fb-pixelChuck E. Cheese will remove animatronic band at all locations except one in California. A teen from Mass. helped save it. - The Boston Globe Skip to main content

Chuck E. Cheese will remove animatronic band at all locations except one in California. A teen from Mass. helped save it.

Like others across the country, the company’s Warwick, Rhode Island, spot will also lose its furry band as it undergoes renovations this summer

Munch's Make Believe Band will find a permanent home in Northridge, Calif.Courtesy Chuck E. Cheese

From pizza parties to chaos in the ball pit, many children and adults have fond memories of going to Chuck E. Cheese at some point in their lives.

But one part of the experience is facing changes: Munch’s Make Believe Band, the iconic (and some might say slightly unnerving) animatronics rock ‘n’ roll group that was first introduced in 1989, is breaking up.

Chuck E. Cheese announced last week that all but one spot in California will do away with the animatronic band, as locations across the country — including in Warwick, Rhode Island — undergo major renovations. The band will have a more digital presence moving forward.


While they will physically leave the play spaces, it was Logan Carreiro, a 14-year-old from Swansea, Mass., who had a lot to do with making sure the band’s presence was at least preserved on the West Coast.

Last year, when word started to spread that CEC Entertainment, the company that owns the family entertainment franchise, would be moving on to “the next generation of fun,” and was looking to replace Munch’s band, Carreiro urged people to sign a petition to “keep the animatronics for our childhoods sake!”

The animatronics band — Chuck E. Cheese on vocals, purple monster-alien Mr. Munch on keyboard, Helen Henny on vocals, hound dog Jasper T. Jowls on guitar, and chef Pasqually P. Pieplate on percussion — now has a permanent home in Northridge, Calif., thanks to Carreiro.

In a Facebook post last month, he said the Chuck E. Cheese franchise even gave him a position for his efforts: chief animatronic officer. Carreiro and his father were flown out to the location earlier this month and recognized for ensuring at least one robotic band had a permanent home.

The Warwick Chuck E. Cheese is the only one of its kind in Rhode Island. Remodeling plans are set to begin next summer, according to a spokesperson for the franchise. Renovations will take about a month, and will include updated exterior signage, upgrades to the interior, new games, a floor-to-wall jumbo screen, a digital dance floor, and more ways to interact with the characters on screens.


“We fully understand the affinity our fans have for classic animatronics; however, over the years, the company has evolved its entertainment to reflect new technologies, new consumer trends, and new ways to interact with our beloved characters,” the spokesperson said.

The new Chuck E. Live! show will replace Munch’s animatronics band at the Warwick location, as well as other locations. The show will have “high expectations of realism and special effects,” according to the spokesperson.

“Animatronics aside, we believe in the value of our characters, and they will continue to be an essential part of our brand as we move forward,” she said.

Just not in the form of fuzzy, moving robots.

Brittany Bowker can be reached at brittany.bowker@globe.com. Follow her @brittbowker and also on Instagram @brittbowker.