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Fort Family Fun Centre leased, plans to reopen

Fort Family Fun Centre

The Fort Fun Centre is coming back.

The business, which closed in the Spring of 2021 during the COVID-19 pandemic, is re-opening under new management and while the actual date it will open its doors has not been revealed, the business’ new owners are “aggressively” trying to have it ready for the public as soon as possible.

Christian Fournier, president and CEO of Tanggo Companies Inc., said he and his group of ten partners are eagerly trying to bring the business back and will offer very similar programs and games as it had when it closed nearly three years ago.

“Everything is pretty well here from the day they left,” said Fournier.

The “Barracks” restaurant is returning, as are other features such as the six-lane bowling alley, the arcade, party rooms and laser tag “combat area,” with other features planned as well. Fournier said the arcade game supplier is ready to return, and is looking forward to coming back to Amherstburg.

The 25,156 square foot facility will largely look the same when it reopens, though Fournier said painting and updating are planned. He said after the Fort Fun Centre re-opens, they will likely make some “tweaks” such as possibly converting the banquet hall area at the north end of the building to a sports simulation area.

The Off the Wall Kids facility in London is operated by the same group and Fournier noted it is geared towards younger children. That is about half the size of The Fort Fun Centre, he added.

“We’ve always wanted to expand into something for older youth and adults,” said Fournier.

They hope to create a “hub” between the two facilities and offer programming and games for people of all ages. He added they were notified of the opportunity in Amherstburg and decided to jump on it.

“The hope is for a very quick turnaround to get it open,” said Fournier. “We want to make sure everyone’s first experience is a good one.”

Exterior features like the beach volleyball courts will be relocated to the back of the building but Fournier added the outside pavilion, known as the “Bunker,” will be brought down because it sits on the property line and the rear portion of the property has been severed and redeveloped for housing.

The building has been leased from owners Terry Jones and Brad Hearn, said Fournier, and the new business owners have the rights to the name.

Fournier said since the news of the re-opening went public, people are excited to see the business return.

“The response has been great,” he said.

The new operators say they hope to bring back some former staff and will be hiring new staff as part of a “staged” re-opening. Fournier envisions having about 30-40 staff members at first and expanding from there. Day camps are also in the plans for the facility.

The building was originally The Verdi Club, with the club still operating out of the Amherstburg Community Hub. The building re-opened as The Fort Fun Centre under the ownership of Hearn and Jones in 2017. It is located at 689 Texas Road.

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By Ron Giofu

Fort Family Fun Centre leased, plans to reopen

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Best of luck. Let us all support this endeavour. Another reason to visit Amherstburg area.

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