Brian McCall, owner of Planet Fun and Starz Sports Grille in Shallotte, N.C., was looking to create a 50,000-square-foot entertainment center that would bring much needed jobs and a whole lot of fun to his community. “We are extremely excited about the project and look forward to bringing this upscale family entertainment center to Shallotte.” said Brian. “It will offer an array of attractions and recreational activities for the entire family.”
In July 2009 this became a reality with Planet Fun and Starz Sports Grille, the largest family entertainment recreational complex along the Coastal Carolinas.
The facility features 32 state-of-the-art bowling lanes, four lanes of Highway 66 mini bowling, a two-level space-themed laser tag arena, a nine-hole ocean-themed blacklight miniature golf course, bumper cars, indoor soft playground, the largest redemption and video arcade in the region, party rooms, concession stand, Pro Shop and a 100-plus seat sports and media restaurant called the Starz Sports Grille. “Our vision is to provide a tremendously fun experience in a safe, clean, comfortable, smoke-free atmosphere with great customer service at a tremendous value,” McCall said.
Beginning with the Foundations University workshop in May of 2008, which was held in Kansas City, Mo., McCall had his project plans and attraction mix reviewed and received valuable information on available attractions. He also visited several showcase entertainment centers in the area, which helped to bring the entire project into focus and provided their team with a behind-the-scenes look at the operation and marketing of successful centers.
Later in the year McCall took advantage of the ILTA’s programs and attended the IAAPA tradeshow, which helped firm up the site preparation details.
Once the project got underway, McCall and Creative Works worked hand in hand with the general contractor on the project, Mark Hiatt at Coram Construction, to ensure that the site areas were prepared properly for the installation of Planet Fun’s themed attractions. This entailed being involved in a myriad of construction meetings over several months with electricians, plumbers, flooring contractors, attraction vendors and more in an effort to answer their questions and collaborate on McCall’s behalf.
McCall’s team created some fantastic artwork on the perimeter walls including space scenes and planetary bodies in the laser tag areas and underwater ocean scenes in the miniature golf. The two-level laser tag arena features glowing high-tech wall obstacles as the arena maze and two brightly lit base targets for the teams.
At the conclusion of the installation, McCall and his team were “very satisfied with the themed environments” that were created. “[Planet Fun] will serve as an entertainment destination for all ages, and have a broad appeal to families, churches, schools, corporate outings and the many tourists that visit Brunswick County. It will be a huge asset to the local population and surrounding areas as one of the premier locations to spend time with you family and friends.”
Planet Fun is a great example of what it takes to be successful in this industry. Learning from industry examples and utilizing both expert advice and putting together a great creative team helped McCall achieve his entrepreneurial dream. His story is a testament to those who not only follow through on their plans, but who do it right the first time.
(If you would like to have your attraction featured in a future Facility Focus, please contact the ILTA at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
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