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Illinois Chuck E. Cheese gets one of five animatronics bands in the US

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The animatronics of Munch’s Make Believe Band go nowhere other than Springfield’s Chuck E. Cheese at 2369 S. MacArthur Blvd., which remains perpetually moving onstage thanks to crowd opposition.

Children’s Pizza owner CEC Entertainment has reversed its decision to phase out all animatronic characters from more than 400 chain stores.

Originally, CEC planned to leave just two bands in the entire country with talking metal rodents and drummer chiefs in the country.

The company said in a detailed plan that animatronics would be phased out by the end of 2024, providing more screens, trampolines and digital floors to dance on. The aggressive shift in corporate image would cater to the new generation of youth, who grew up with technology that has surpassed the robot belt.

The crowd screamed.

Chief Executive of Chuck E. Cheese David McKillips told The New York Times that die-hard fans of the band called his personal phone number to criticize the decision, while other fans of the vintage animatronics sent letters, emails and phone calls to the company sent to see Pasqually, the drummer, continues to play.

In response, Chuck E. Cheese announced in November that the Los Angeles and Nanuet NY locations would keep their bands, but since resistance from local communities, only three locations (Springfield, Pineville, NC and Hicksville, NY) remain at the list attached, eliminating Munch’s bond of decommissioning.

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Fans of the characters took to Facebook to celebrate the news. Animatronic enthusiast Jake Suchman said, “Ladies and gentlemen, we won,” in reference to Muncher’s onstage encore.

The five bands that have survived from the decades range from the 1980s to the 2010s. Springfield’s animatronic band is the last CU 1 stage in the country, and the last animatronic Chuck E. Cheese in the state. A CU 1-stage is a special full-character stage type that uses 3-Stage characters with a 1-Stage-like format. The stage is unique to other Chuck E. Cheese stages as the band is called ‘Chuck E.’s Make Believe Band’ instead of its namesake ‘Munch’s Make Believe Band’.

According to The New York Times, Chuck E. Cheese Chief Marketing Officer Mark Kuferman said the decision to keep three of the older bands around was less about business and more about paying tribute to the kids who started the company have supported during its 47 years of existence. years of history.

Claire Grant writes about business, growth and development and other news topics for The State Journal-Register. She can be reached at [email protected]; and on X (formerly known as Twitter): @Claire_Granted

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