Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Main Event Opening $14 Million Store in Tulsa

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Main Event Opening $14 Million Store in Tulsa

Article excerpt

TULSA - Main Event will unveil a new store prototype and menu with Tuesday's Tulsa opening.

The estimated $14 million-plus project delivers the U.S. subsidiary's 20th location, said Main Event Chief Executive Charlie Keegan. It marks the seventh and last new store to open this fiscal year, which ends June 30.

At 49,000 square feet, the new location just off 81st Street and U.S. Highway 75 promises heightened space efficiencies for its 168- person opening staff.

"It's very similar to the store in Oklahoma City," said Keegan, noting the company's 58,018-square-foot location that opened last year.

"It has sort of an upgraded interior design package, new lighting, new decor," he said. "It has a little different game and amusement mix. But it has the same look and feel as Oklahoma City."

That starts with the Main Event entertainment options including 22 bowling lanes, a two-story laser tag complex, video games, billiards and an elevated climbing challenge course above the game room.

"Our highest-rated activity for satisfaction is laser tag, which is surprising," said Keegan. "You can't have a game of laser tag without coming out with your adrenaline running and your heart beating."

Roughly 20 percent of store revenues come from catering group parties or events at different dining stations or rooms. The new menu augments Main Event's staple appetizers, steak, pizza, sandwiches, salads and tacos.

"It's fresher, healthier, more authentic," Keegan said. "It's on par with a best-in-class grill and bar menu that you'll find."

Such businesses profit off the "staycation" trend that grew through the recession years, as more Oklahomans invested their vacation dollars in or around their home, said University of Central Oklahoma economist Sue Lynn Sasser.

"What I find most interesting is that we used to have to go to Dallas or other major metro areas to find things like this," said Sasser, a professor at the UCO School of Business Department of Economics and International Business. …

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