New mall anchors? These six entertainment businesses are growing

By Jodi Schwan

They’re interactive, entertaining and all about fun.

Several growing entertainment-based businesses are planning national expansions that eventually could include Sioux Falls.

They’re taking over former department stores at many mall properties and offering visitors unique experiences for all ages.

Here’s a look at some of the growing players:

Crayola Experience: More than two dozen hands-on attractions await, allowing kids to name their own crayon, star in a coloring page and have a 4-D coloring adventure. The business also expanded its adults-only Crayola After Dark event this year into a monthly event where guests enjoy wine and appetizers as they attempt advanced crafts and play with the attractions. Crayola Experience has four locations, including one at the Mall of America, and recently opened in part of a former Nordstrom department store in Florida.

Dave & Buster’s: The national food, bar and entertainment concept has two Minnesota locations and one in Omaha – so it’s inching closer to Sioux Falls. It features a variety of arcade games plus a full-service bar and restaurant. The chain has about 90 locations, recently opened three sites in former Sears or Kmart stores and is opening 12 locations this year.

KidZania: This growing indoor theme park began in Mexico and has expanded worldwide. Kids enter a miniature city that allows them to role-play in more than 100 occupations and professions, from board member to baker, doctor to truck driver. Each KidZania is tailored to its city, complete with buildings, paved streets, vehicles and a self-contained economy fueled by a currency called kidZos. The first U.S. locations are in Chicago and Dallas, but there are plans to open as many as 20 in the coming years.

Main Event Entertainment: The growing national chain features state-of-the-art bowling, multilevel laser tag, a gravity ropes adventure course, mini golf, billiards and video games plus an Italian street-market food concept with a full bar. It has more than 30 U.S. locations. The company is projecting 42 locations by the end of the year, with a Midwest expansion in 2018.

Punch Bowl Social: A self-described “dirty modern mash-up of chandeliers, ‘Gangster’s Paradise,’ food for foodies, PBR tallboys and craft beverages,” this growing food and entertainment business offers everything from brunch to bowling parties, all-you-can-sing karaoke and shuffleboard. It’s in eight U.S. cities with about a dozen more locations in development.

Round One Bowling and Amusement: The growing chain offers modern bowling combined with billiards, darts, ping pong, arcade games, karaoke and a kids’ zone. It started in Japan and has 105 locations worldwide. There are 13 locations in the U.S. and plans to open 50 by 2020.

New mall anchors? These six entertainment businesses are growing

Several growing entertainment-based businesses are planning national expansions that eventually could include Sioux Falls.

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