Kid-Friendly Restaurant Reviews: Friendly’s

Friendly’s has been one of my absolute favorite restaurants since high school; it used to be the best hangout spot after school concerts and activities.  There was a fire that closed our local Friendly’s when I was away at college, and I think everyone who went away to college was still talking about it over email.  Luckily, they rebuilt and remodeled the restaurant to be better than ever.  Now, I take my son there at least once a week for lunch with the grandparents.

Kid-Friendly Atmosphere

Our local Friendly’s used to give balloons to every child, though they recently discontinued the practice. My son loved it, and a balloon occasionally saved us from a temper tantrum. They have some nice sturdy plastic high chairs instead of the usual wooden ones.  These are the kind that are actually safe for car seat carriers to fit on top, so you don’t have to worry about what happens when they flip those wooden ones upside down.

Kid-Friendly Menu

Friendly’s kids meals come with an entree, beverage, and ice cream.  They have both a kids and a big kids menu.  Personally, I would prefer to order from the big kids menu, but they do have an upper age limit.

Since my son is just a toddler, he can usually share something from the little kids menu with another toddler.  He likes the macaroni and cheese with applesauce or waffle fries, or the mac and cheese and hot dog, or the chicken fingers with applesauce.  They also have cheese quesadillas, grilled cheese, hamburgers, or cheeseburgers.  I don’t approve of their “meal” consisting of mozzarella sticks and french fries, but it is an option.

Bigger kids can choose from some much cooler meals like a crispy chicken wrap, a salad topped with grilled or fried chicken, skewered chicken fingers, a double cheeseburger, or two hot dogs.

Little kids and big kids have their own ice cream menus to choose from, as well, many of which feature candy like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups or gummy bears.

Kid-Friendly Service

We have a favorite server, Patty, who we request by name.  Any Friendly’s server will honor our request for an extra straw to play with.  But Patty brings out little “baby appetizer platters” for each of the kids – a bowl of mandarin oranges, some dill pickle slices, and a package of saltine crackers.  The kids love it, and it keeps them quiet and happy until lunch comes.  She also gives me one of the bendy straws that the kids get, just because it makes me smile.  She’s been doing it for years.  She got me a cold cloth with ice and a big glass of ice water (without my asking) when I got overheated the summer I was pregnant.  She even gave the kids two of the stuffed animals she won out of the skill crane for Christmas.

Patty takes such good care of us that I gave her a Christmas card this year.  She keeps it in her order pad.  When other customers ask about “her baby,” she tells them all about him and how he’s the son of a special customer.

I don’t know where else you can get service like that.

And Everything Else

I have been to some Friendly’s restaurants that are not “my” local Friendly’s, and I have noticed some big differences in the level of customer service – even when I consider our visits when we don’t have our favorite server. I hope your Friendly’s experience is as good as mine!

My kid-friendly restaurant reviews are accurate as far as the restaurants in my local area are concerned.  I would hope that the restaurant chains would be more or less consistent in their policies and service, but please be aware that your local restaurant manager may run things differently.

Christina Gleason (975 Posts)

That’s me: Christina Gleason. I’m a professional copywriter, editor, and blogger. My company is called Phenomenal Content. (Hire me!) I'm a multiply disabled autistic woman doing my best in this world built for abled people. I’m a geek for grammar, fantasy, and select types of gaming, including Twitch Sings and Plants vs Zombies 2. I hate vegetables. I have an intense phone phobia, so I’ll happily conduct business over email or IM instead.


  1. […] has the newer gray plastic high chairs (like the ones at Friendly’s) instead of the older wooden ones that are still popular in many restaurants. They also offer […]

  2. […] – toy and all – and eat for less than $5 and 500 calories. Why can’t I go to Friendly’s and do the same thing? (Although for slightly more than $5, of course.) If I want the smaller […]

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