For two summers I have worked at Hershey, Pennsylvania’s Challenge Family Fun Center (stop by if you need a break from chocolate themed attractions). Challenge is an arcade, kitchen, mini-golf center, and had been the best place to spend my summers and break between school. As I pack up to head back in less than a week I present some of the things I have gleaned working here.
1. Even on the hottest day of the year there will still be people who want to mini-golf in the midday sun. Why? I have no idea, and from what I have gathered neither do they.
2. Convincing children to save their arcade tickets to come back later and get a bigger prize is a fool’s errand and thankless task.
3. No matter how many signs and instructions you post on how games work or how many tokens they need, people will still find a way to break them. I do not know how, especially since most of the games you just put tokens in and it automatically starts.
4. There is no such thing as too much ice cream, or too many flavors.
5. If you want plants to look healthy without strenuous effort, then water the roots daily and remove dead and dying parts weekly. This is what we do, and we always get compliments on our flowers, on a seemingly daily basis.
6. Your temperament affects how fellow employees and customers view you. Stay humble; work hard.
7. When hosting a birthday party (or any other party for that matter), preparation is everything; if you can form a schedule, the day will be smooth sailing.
8. Try to learn as much as possible at your job, including in areas you do not work in, you may not ever use this information, but having it makes you indispensable.
9. People will compare you to similar establishments, saying the good, bad, and the ugly. There is nothing you can do about it.
10. When you go to arcades with friends now, you know exactly which games to play to win the most tickets, and probably how each game’s mechanism works. Friends will think you are magic; employees will question if you cheated; you will win the giant stuffed bear in one day.
11. If you are not having fun while working, you are doing it wrong.