Read what Al Stilley and the Southsider Voice had to say about the future of Rascal’s Fun Zone after the Goedeker’s purchase.
The future of Rascal’s Fun Zone – the 11-acre family entertainment complex in Whiteland – is in good hands.
The indoor-outdoor entertainment center is under the new ownership and management of Whiteland High School alumnus and brothers, Brad (Class of 1999) and Jeff Goedeker (Class of 1997), who purchased the massive facility in November 2022.
“Our hearts are in the right place to offer affordable, great entertainment where everyone can have fun and make memories,” Brad Goedeker said in an exclusive interview. “It has to be more fun, safer, cleaner, positive and uplifting for all who come to enjoy Rascal’s Fun Zone.”
They also seek to change the perception that Rascal’s Fun Zone as just a “seasonal outdoor go-kart track.”
As Brad Goedeker points out, there is much more that patrons can enjoy: two indoor go-kart tracks, a massive arcade pizzeria with prizes, 48,000 square feet of games, food, and entertainment, many new arcade games, indoor duck-pin bowling this summer, two outdoor miniature golf courses, outdoor pool bumper boats, two large pavilion areas outdoors, huge picnic area, and spacious parking.
Brad and his brother remember Rascal’s as a putt-putt golf course when they were at Whiteland High School.
“Had a great time here and our kids can have fun here,” Brad emphasized. “I hold this place in high regard. It is a staple of the community and people come from a 90-minute radius.”
He continued, “We want people to have a place for a birthday party, to enjoy special occasions, and for businesses and corporations to have large outings. We are friendly and affordable – that’s the niche we want to be in.”
Significantly, the Goedekers have improved the Rascal’s Fun Zone website and already have reached out to more businesses and corporations, schools, and organizations with improved marketing and special events.
For example, they have introduced a new “Reading for Rascal’s” program that rewards students at Clark, Needham, and Pleasant Crossing elementary schools for reading improvement and achievement that they want to expand to more schools. Rascal’s also opens its doors once a month for FireFlight of Indianapolis, a children’s alliance that benefits homeless children.
“We want to reach out, tell our story to the people, and use social media – that’s how new customers can find us.”
The website was utilized in November so followers could purchase gift cards online in time for Christmas giving. Also, nearby Endress+Hauser had its employee Christmas party at Rascal’s Fun Zone.
Brad also looked back on the past five months and realized, “It’s been a race to get a handle on everything.”
Brad, his wife Marissa and brother Jeff and his wife Nikki bought Rascal’s Fun Zone on Aug. 4, 2022. Brad and Marissa, a third-grade teacher at Clark Elementary, have three children, Holly 11, Quincy 8, and Henry 4. Jeff and Nikki have four children, Brady 14, Gabi 12, McKenzie 8, and Isabelle 6. Each family lives in Whiteland.
Brad and Jeff played baseball and basketball and ran cross-country for the Warriors. Brad was valedictorian of the Class of 1999. He is an alumnus of Franklin College and Purdue University. He is a pharmacist and has worked with Walmart and Genoa Health Care and opened a small pharmacy in Franklin during the pandemic in August 2020 to help serve those with mental illnesses. He later was pharmacy director for a managed health plan with United Health Care in early 2021. Brother Jeff is a dentist.
They had several talks with the previous owners before buying Rascal’s Fun Zone.
“Rascal’s came out of the pandemic with some of their best sales, but it was a big challenge for any business or profession to navigate their way through the pandemic,” Brad recalled. “Hopefully, no one has to deal with anything that challenging again.”
They have touched many aspects of Rascal’s Fun Zone while retaining many of the former employees and making customers more welcome.
One major project is the refurbishing of the weathered stand-up animals throughout the two miniature golf courses. They have sent two of the animals to Whiteland High School for students there to refurbish in a pilot program.
“There was lots of deferred maintenance that needed to be done, mainly for environmental and safety improvements,” Brad said. “We were so fortunate and blessed to inherit a ton of workers who love this place.”
Brad also continues to reach out to more businesses, schools, sports clubs, teams and not-for-profits to help them raise funds through events at Rascal’s Fun Zone. And he has been networking with other family entertainment centers nationwide for new ideas.
“We are going to make Rascal’s better for everyone,” Brad concluded.
By Al Stilley / www.southsidervoice.com