Having just had our first Chuck E. Cheese birthday party, here’s a few thought on how to make the day go a little smoother.

  • Reserve early to get the best time (who wants a pizza party at 10:00 am or 3:00 pm?)
  • Reserve on-line to hold a spot without any deposit (but show up otherwise they’ll charge your credit card)
  • Your party planner is your new best friend. You’re paying big bucks to have your party there, so use him/her for advice and to take your food order. Also, make sure you know his/her name so that you can call across the room to ask for forks.
  • Plan the times you open presents and play around Chuck’s arrival (ask the party planner when he’s coming out for your group)
  • Invite the parents to stay (and feed them) there’s no way to keep track of 5 kids (who aren’t your own) in that place.
  • They take coupons for the adults’ food, so save up before the party.
  • Know your kid’s friends’ names. It’s very helpful when a kid comes running into the party and tries to usher all the other kids into the play area just minutes before Chuck is going to come out (ask me how I know).
  • Unless your kid has been to a lot of parties at Chuck E. Cheese, I’d suggest 5 is the minimum age for kids to really enjoy the party aspect of it. We went to a 4 year-old party and the entire table started crying when Mr. Cheese came out, but the 5 year-olds at the next table had a blast.

Birthdays that don’t require cleaning up, works for me (if you don’t like Chuck’s place, go check out this week’s birthday theme for other good ideas).