New Cedar Fun Center to host public grand opening

CEDAR CITY — After being in a “soft open” mode for the past few weeks, Cedar Fun Center is primed to officially open its doors to the public. The center’s grand opening celebration has been scheduled for Saturday from 6-10 p.m.

Arcade at the newly renovated Cedar Fun Center, Cedar City, Utah, Aug. 9, 2021 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

The fun center, located at 170 E. Fiddlers Canyon Road, features a variety of family friendly entertainment options, many of which will be familiar to patrons of the former establishment, known for years as Fiddlers Fun Center.

But ever since partners Jon Cole, Brandon Eves and Derrik Staheli bought the property and began renovating the building back in March, they’ve been determined to create the best experience possible for customers.

“When we first took over the building and started operating, initially we were going to just open and get going and just keep the status quo,” Cole recently told Cedar City News. “But then we realized that people seem to really know the building. They came here when they were in high school, or as a child. This building really has some fun history to it. So, we decided to redo the building, and we definitely spent longer than we thought we would on the remodel process.”

Their efforts have resulted in a new-look Cedar Fun Center that’s been freshly painted inside and out, along with new carpet and other renovations in the lobby area. 

The four-screen movie theater, as of Monday, was showing “Cruella,” “Peter Rabbit 2,” and “The Boss Baby: Family Business.” Check the fun center’s website for current times and listings. Admission prices are $6.50 for adults, $5.50 for children. The matinee price is $4.50 per person for all shows starting before 6 p.m. 

Although some of the theater’s second-run offerings are likely to already be out as new DVD releases or on Netflix and other streaming services, Cole said that hasn’t deterred people of all ages from coming in to watch films together.

“People come to the movies because they want to be out,” he said. “They want the experience and to be around other people. They want to get the concessions, you know? It’s the whole deal.”

L-R: Cedar Fun Center’s laser tag experts Brandon Eves, Caleb Bittar and Dallen Forsyth after taking third place overall in a national laser tag tournament in Syracuse, N.Y., July 2021 | Photo courtesy of Cedar Fun Center, St. George News / Cedar City News

Additionally, the ever-popular laser tag course is also back, and the center has no shortage of experts to help oversee it. Eves and two other Cedar Fun Center employees Caleb Bittar and Dallen Forsyth recently flew back to New York to compete in a national laser tag tournament, taking third place overall.

Besides having completely new ownership and management, Cedar Fun Center has hired a new staff of approximately 15 employees, Cole said.

“We’re really trying to create the best customer service experience we can, so that people can just come here and have fun,” he said. “We’ve got some really excited people on our staff who enjoy working here. We try to make it a fun experience for our employees, too.”

Cole said Cedar Fun Center hopes to add more attractions soon, starting with a skating rink and a go-kart track.

“We’ve actually acquired the property surrounding us for expansion,” Cole said. “We’ve been working with ice rink arena companies, and we are preparing the information for the city to get permitting for a rink that would serve as an ice skating rink for five months, along with seven months of roller skating.”

They’re also planning on a regulation-size hockey rink, to be enclosed in a metal building.

“We’re also looking at the initial stages of go-karts,” Cole added, noting that it, along with the skating facility, were the top two vote-getters in a recent survey of some 700 community residents. “I know it’s been a big request from people, so we’re pleased to at least have the space to do that.”

The center’s arcade features many of the familiar games, along with several new ones. Players can earn ticket credits, which are also tracked on their card and can be redeemed for prizes.

One of the newest amenities, expected to open in mid-August, is a small eatery called Canyon Cafe, located right inside the main lobby. It will offer a variety of hot foods, such as pizza, chicken tenders and French fries.

Cole said the fun center’s goal is to be the community’s “one-stop shop” for their family entertainment needs.

“It’ll be an entertainment complex, a gathering place where you’ve got an all-in-one place to hang out, a place to come and spend time together.”

Flyer for the grand opening of the newly renovated Cedar Fun Center, Cedar City, Utah, scheduled for Aug. 14, 2021 | Image courtesy of Derrik Staheli, St. George News / Cedar City News

“We’ve been open a little over a month now, and we’ve kind of just eased into it,” Cole said. “We’ve been working on things as we go along. But now things have stabilized a bit, and we’re looking forward to the grand opening.”

Staheli said that any antique, classic or exotic car owners who are interested in having their vehicles be part of Saturday evening’s car show are invited to join in the fun (call 435-263-0200 for details). Free pizza and drinks will be provided to participating car owners.

One last detail the Cedar Fun Center owners are still waiting on is an electronic marquee sign to grace the front of the building outside.

“The sign company said they are about two or three weeks away from installation,” Cole added. “I’m trying to see if we can rush that.”

Event details

  • What: Cedar Fun Center grand opening event, with car show, music, and other activities.
  • When: Saturday, Aug. 14, 6-10 p.m. 
  • Where: 170 E. Fiddlers Canyon Road, Cedar City.
  • Additional information: Check Cedar Fun Center’s website, Facebook page, or call 435-263-0200.

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Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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