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Snack Shack fun center is loaded with fun for young children

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When Floyd W. Roberts thinks about his early childhood, he vividly recalls his parents taking him to places to be entertained for his birthday — inflatable toys, arcades and pizza were involved.

With that notion in mind, in December the 42-year-old businessman launched the Snack Shack Family Fun Center at 20768 Route 12F. The center’s fun-filled activities already have made it a busy hub for children’s birthday parties.

“I appreciate that my parents took me to fun places as a kid, but I don’t think it’s done as much these days,” said Mr. Roberts, who also owns Palomino Motors in Watertown and Evans Mills. “This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.”

Activities are geared toward children ages 1 to 7 at the 4,800-square-foot center, which has partnered with Roberts Family Concessions in Watertown to offer pizza, hamburgers, hot dogs and chicken wings, he said. When they enter, youngsters will first notice its inflatable bounce castles, slides and mini trampoline; the arcade features a giant Connect Four game, air hockey, a foosball table, arcade-style basketball, Skee-Ball, an interactive downhill skiing game and an old-school jukebox. Tickets earned from games can be redeemed for prizes such as plasma balls, sticky hand toys and candy.

Children can take a break from the action by getting washable glittery tattoos stamped on their arms; designs include butterflies and mermaids for girls, sharks and pirates for boys. A separate party room with dining booths is also available.

Youngsters can whoop the afternoon away for $5 an hour per person at the center, said Mr. Roberts, who aimed to create an affordable getaway for families.

“I’ve tried to make this a place where everything is included, instead of paying more as you go like other places,” he said.

Mr. Roberts said activities now available at the center are just the start of his plans. Next month, youngsters who visit the center will be able to make their own stuffed zoo animals. A host of outdoor activities will be offered at the center during the spring and summer. Those plans include giant inflatable obstacle courses and a fenced-in area that will offer rides for children on large moving stuffed animals, called Giddy Up Rides.

Two children at a time will be able to race through obstacle courses more than 50 feet long, which include ladders, pylons, climbing wall and slides. Obstacle course themes will feature a boot camp challenge, Batman, Spider-Man and Call of Duty Black Ops, which is named after a popular video game. There is also a chance water will be added to slides during the hot summer, transforming it into an inflatable water park.

“They’re going to love racing and bouncing,” Mr. Roberts said.

Snack Shack Family Fun Center is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, visit snackshackfamilyfuncenter.com.

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