By Joy Hampton
The Norman Transcript
NORMAN — Bowling is coming out of the back room and into the boardroom with the proposal of a $9 million renovation of HeyDay Entertainment Center to include 24 bowling lanes. The two story addition will allow for family entertainment downstairs and “adults only” bowling with an upscale lounge upstairs.
HeyDay will also increase the number of employees from 45 to 125.
“When we designed this thing, we designed it to be an experience that you’d have to travel to the West Coast, to Dallas, or to the East Coast to have,” said co-owner and developer Trey Bates. “This is going to be an amazing state-of-the-art facility.”
Designed by Shane LaBeth of Cornerstone Architecture in Moore, the Brunswick facility will triple the entertainment space offered at HeyDay and increase the seating capacity from 135 to 450. The anticipated opening is fall 2014.
The two-story addition will bring 28,000 more square feet to HeyDay. The current interior will also be completely renovated and HeyDay will close for two weeks in the fall while work is completed.
Co-owner Brad Little said they have been researching this bowling entertainment model for two years. When the tornado wiped out the AMF bowling center in Moore which will not be rebuilt, those plans expanded.
“We were thinking about building before the tornado but not to this scale,” Little said. “We were going to do the upscale bowling.”
Little is chairman of the board for the Moore Chamber of Commerce. He and Bates like the way HeyDay brings the two communities of Norman and Moore together and hope the expansion will serve both communities well.
Little said research revealed that lasertag and bowling are the two biggest draws for the entertainment industry. The new facility will serve families and leagues but will also offer a new draw for businesses needing training or conference space.
Downstairs, the cafeteria-style restaurant serving DoubleDaves pizza will transform into Revolutions, a more intimate cafe setting.
“It will be a totally different look,” Little said.
While DoubleDaves will still be served, patrons will have a wider menu selection and the kitchen will be enlarged.
The number of arcade games will also increase and private party rooms will be added on both floors. An elevator will allow wait staff to transport food upstairs and will make the upstairs accessible for persons with disabilities.
The new entryway will a greeting area with a water wall.
“It will be like walking into a nice hotel,” Little said.
The downstairs environment will allow “kids to be kids,” Bates said, but patrons will “definitely have an entirely different experience upstairs.”
Little said while there will be leagues, there will always be lanes dedicated to open bowling and weekends will be strictly open bowling.
The upstairs lounge, The BreakPoint, will seat 165 people and will include a fireplace, large island bar, televisions, video games, pool table, shuffleboard and a balcony rail that overlooks the downstairs bowling lanes. An outside seating balcony will overlook the miniature golf course.
The eight upstairs bowling lanes will be in Brunswick’s cherrywood finish.
“Brunswick is the premier bowling equipment provider,” Bates said. “We’ve certainly not cut any corners here. I’m sure some people will wonder what we’re doing building a facility of this level here, but whenever I’ve taken a risk, Norman and Moore have never let me be disappointed.”
The upstairs facility will be limited to patrons aged 21 and over. It will be ideal for a classy date-night out Bates said, but much of the facility can be rented to host a company party or training with full audio-visual support in each of the private rooms available for rent. After the company meeting, employees can bond and do team-building through lasertag and bowling — or not.
Outside sales person Cathy Doyle came on board with HeyDay two months ago and will help market the facility as a conference and entertainment center.
“Cathy Doyle is a godsend,” Little said. “She came to us from the Marriott.”
Financing for the project is by First American Bank and the general contractor is Miller-Tippens Construction.
“People don’t have to go anywhere but here to do upscale entertainment,” Little said.
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