Go Loko

Entertainment venue in Fayetteville has unlimited-access armbands, party rooms

Posted: April 11, 2014 at 10:15 a.m.
Updated: April 10, 2014 at 11:06 a.m.

Lokomotion Family Fun Park, located just north of the Northwest Arkansas Mall on U.S. 71 Business, is a multi-use facility that offers entertainment for all ages.

Built in 1994, the center offers four go-kart tracks, two 18-hole mini-golf courses, water bumper boats, laser tag, arcade games and four party rooms.

"Eighty percent of what we have here is outside. Our main attraction is go-karts," said general manager Doug Watson.

The Junior track is reserved for ages 4-6 years old. The Rookie track is available for ages 7-13 years old.

The Family track has two-seated carts. Drivers must be 14 years old and older and at least five feet tall. Passengers are allowed on the Family track, if the driver is 16 years or older and the passenger is at least 36-inches tall.

A valid driver's license is required for the Pro track. The single-seat karts are equipped with a five-point harness and can accelerate up to 25 mph.

The mini-golf courses are set beside a tributary of the Illinois River, and a portion of the Razorback Greenway multi-use trail runs adjacent to Lokomotion and connects Lake Fayetteville to the Clear Creek Trail.

Another popular attraction, especially for young children, is the bridge that spans the river. Coin-operated food dispensers allow the children to feed the fish, said Watson.

There is no entry fee at Lokomotion, but the different activities have their own fees. The facility provides birthday packages and group rates for those fees.

Birthday party packages start at $10 an hour per person. That price includes a room rental for one hour with plates and napkins. Each guest also gets an hour of unlimited access to the go-karts, laser tag, mini-golf and bumper boats.

This promotion started in February, and due to the popularity of the package, it will continue to be available, assistant manager Scott Stilwell said.

The $10 Unlimited Armband Birthday Package is available for a group of at least eight people. Special-priced add-ons include an extra hour of unlimited rides for $5 per person and up to 250 game tokens for $40.

"[This package is popular], especially for the older kids... it allows them to do what they want, when they want. So if they want, they could just ride go-karts for an hour, rather then having to do everything as a group," Stilwell said.

"It gives the kids more freedom. [The Laser Blast and Classic Racer Packages] are more of an organized, structured party," Stilwell said.

The $10-per-person package does not include food or drinks, but those can be purchased separately, either in advance or at the event.

The menu served at the on-site Cafe Loko offers ballpark-style fare with hot dogs, nachos, chicken tenders, cheese sticks, a jumbo pretzel, popcorn, cotton candy and other snacks.

"We make our own cheese dip and fry the chips in-house," Watson said.

Watson's previous experience in the catering industry has helped him fine-tune a few menu items and add one of the most popular offerings -- house-smoked, pulled pork sandwiches.

The meat is rubbed with a signature blend of seasoning and smoked in-house for 12 hours. The end result is a flavorful and tender mound of pulled pork served on a hamburger bun. The pulled pork sandwich is priced at $2.25 and French fries can be added for $1.

There is also pizza by the slice or as a whole pie. Gluten-free pizza crust is available with an advanced notice of at least four days.

"You can walk up and order pizza and it's ready within 10 minutes," Stilwell said.

Pizza by the slice can be added to any group package. One slice with a soft drink is priced at $3, and two slices and a soft drink is $4.

An ice cream sundae bar can be added for $3.50 per person and includes two scoops of vanilla ice cream, up to three toppings, a choice of chocolate or strawberry syrup and topped with whipped cream and a cherry.

The Laser Blast and Classic Racer Packages include "The Works" and start at $11.99 per person with an eight-person minimum.

"The Works" includes a slice of cheese pizza; unlimited soft drinks; plates; cups; napkins; downloadable invitation and thank you notes; a private party room for an hour-and-a-half; and a staff member appointed as party captain.

"The advantage of these parties is that you get the pizza and drinks, and it is a more structured party. The party captain gets the pizza and drinks, and leads the kids around," Stilwell said.

These are more popular with the parents of younger age groups, since the party captain can help "keep the party sane," Stilwell said.

Outside food is not permitted, with the exception of birthday cake, cupcakes or cookie cakes.

Lokomotion also uses Facebook to advertise special promotions and offers.

A current promotion offers unlimited access to go-karts, laser tag, mini-golf and bumper boats 5-9 p.m. Thursdays for $14.

Facebook fans can also go to the coupon tab and sign up to receive a free round of laser tag and four tokens.

Guests can also sign up on lokomotion.com or at the front counter to join the Loko Jr. Kids Club, which sends a monthly newsletter, exclusive offers and invitations to "members only" events.

Current hours of operation are 4-9 p.m. Wednesdays and Thurdays, 2 p.m.-midnight Fridays, 10 a.m.-midnight Saturdays and noon-10 p.m. Sundays.

Although currently closed Mondays and Tuesdays, private party bookings are allowed on these days in addition to regular hours.

Summer hours, which start Memorial Day weekend, are 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-midnight Friday-Saturday and noon-10 p.m. Sunday.

NAN Dining Guide Cover on 04/11/2014

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