I want to thank a story from the Wall Street Journal that made this posting much easier. It talks about how Chuck E. Cheese (and many times booze filled environments) is getting bad publicity because in 12 cases since January 2007, police have been called to their restaurants (not sure if serving flat and dry pizza qualifies as a “restaurant.” However, I’ll leave that evaluation to the food critics).
The Wall Street Journal reported (excerpt):
To appeal to adults, about 70% of the chain’s locations serve wine and beer. Some city officials have pinpointed that as the main cause of the fighting. Milwaukee Alderman Tony Zielinski called for the removal of Chuck E. Cheese’s beer-and-wine license in 2006 after he received police notification and complaints from constituents about fighting there. The company stationed armed security guards inside the restaurant in an effort to make it safer.
This is one time when I feel that a child in the third grade could offer up public relations advice to a corporate client like Chuck E. Cheese. Let’s break this down:
“…about 70% of the chain’s locations serve wine and beer.”
The company promotes itself where “a kid can be a kid.” And apparently where adults can get plastered. (I wonder if they serve the Miller Lite with one of the swirly straws, I used to love those.)
“The company stationed armed security guards inside the restaurant in an effort to make it safer.”
Now the picture gets clearer. If someone gets out of hand after you’ve served them alcoholic beverages, shoot them. That will fix everything. Parents can explain that it’s simply an extension of the robotic singing characters on stage to add realism to the dining experience.
What’s the PR laugh here? Just read the Wall Street Journal. They’re soon going to compete with Comedy Central.