We celebrated my son’s tenth birthday with a trip to Q-Zar laser tag in Concord. For $150, our small group completed two battles in the arena (with other folks) before returning home to pizza and donuts in the backyard. By not having an official private party on-site, we may have saved about $300. Gulp. Want to know more? Read on as East Bay mom and guest writer, Sunny, shares her experience hosting a birthday party at Q-Zar. For more birthday party ideas in the East Bay, see our Birthday Party Guide!
What happened to the good old days when a kid’s birthday consisted of a cake, friends, and pin the tail on the donkey? When I told my son that’s what we used to do for parties, he just looks at me like I’m from another planet (no, not another planet, just a different generation). So after much discussion, we ended up at Q-Zar Laser Tag in Concord for Lucas’ 10th birthday party. He had been there several times before for other birthday parties and knew exactly what he wanted.
For birthday parties at Q-Zar, you can choose from several party package options. Like some of these other kid activity places like Pump It Up, the all-inclusive package makes it really easy for the parents.
For the laser tag game, players are divided up into teams and given electronic vests to wear and guns to wield. You basically try to shoot members of the other team, while providing back up for your own team members and home base. It helps to have the skills to “charge” your laser tag gun when you’re running low (I didn’t have the skills, so I needed a little kid to show me).
After you finish the laser tag games, they shuttle your group into one of the party areas, which are very basic. But again, it’s easy for the parents since they bring in the pizzas and drinks and do the cleanup.
Once we were done with the pizza and cake, the boys went on to the arcade. They probably spent more time in the arcade than playing laser tag, but they blew off any extra sugar-induced energy with all the games they played.
The kids had a ton of fun, as did any parents that jumped into the arena. This party is super easy for parents to organize; you don’t have to do any prep or clean up. You just show up with your kid and his cronies and a cake. They also have a deal with a local pizza place so you order the pizzas and drinks beforehand (no outside food allowed aside from your own cake).
Hosting the party at Q-Zar is not cheap. So it’s up to you whether the trade-off (no prep and clean up) is worth it. The fully-hosted party with two private games for 20 kids and all the pizza runs slightly more than $600.
There’s an arcade. It was a good way to get rid of any extra money I had planned on “saving.” Like the party package, you can purchase different options for game credit.
Kids must be 6 years or older to play laser tag. Also, if there’s a kid who doesn’t like being in the dark with other kids hunting them down, this will not be the place for them. Each game includes a short instructional and safety talk and 15 minutes of game time.
The Bottom line:
Aside from the two laser tag games, our package included 100 game tokens (and I still went back to buy more once they blew through those), 45 minutes in the party room with a few pizzas and pitchers of drinks, and a t-shirt for the birthday boy.
Individual laser tag games are $10 each. A package for 2 public battles and 5 funcard (game credits) is $20 per person (BEST DEAL). So, circling back to the secret shared at the top of this post, bringing three or four friends to play and avoiding a party package will cost closer to $100 before you add food or treats.
2295 Willow Pass Road, Concord
For more birthday party ideas in the East Bay, see our Birthday Party Guide!