Little storefront is opening to big area of fun and games

| 28 Sep 2011 | 02:47

    WANTAGE-From the outside, it is hard to believe the sign on the window that says 15,000 square feet of fun, but once inside it all becomes clear. Funzone, located in the Wantage Plaza on Route 23 from the outside looks like a single storefront, but inside it opens up to an expanse covering a third of an acre and accomodating batting cages, a play center with a concession area. Funzone is owned and operated by Vernonites Mark and Tracy Gencarelli, who felt that the area was in need of the facilities they are offering. "My husband has been in the restaurant business for 20 years so this is a big change for us," said Tracy Gencarelli. "But we felt that there wasn't a lot for children to do in the area and that's why we opened Funzone." The Play center, which is geared to children up to ten years old, is located in the back of the facility along with the four batting cages, which are for both baseball and softball. The arcade area, which has 30 video machines, is located to the front of the facility. "We have kept the arcade separate from the rest of the activities and have a separate walkway for access to the play center and batting cages for parents who do not want their kids to be distracted by the video machines," said Gencarelli. The play center is particularly popular for parties and mothers groups, she added. "I think that this is something that the area needed, and I would certainly come here on a rainy day," said Becky Lazier of Wantage, whose toddler was attending a birthday party. Funzone opened in mid-January. Within the next two to three weeks, the Gencarellis expect to open a concession area offering hot dogs, pretzels and soft drinks. The play center is open from 10 a.m.n7 p.m. daily and the arcade is open from 10 a.m.-9 p.m. during the week and from 9 a.m.-10 p.m. on weekends. The batting cages open at 2 p.m. during the week and have the same operating hours as the arcade at weekends. For more information, call 973-702-0500.