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Tips & Best Practices for Family Entertainment Centers

Getting to Know TrainerTainment’s Mary Southwick

What do you enjoy most about working with our clients?

It is fun to talk shop and share your experiences with other people. I find I learn so much from all our clients, so my takeaways go straight to my tool box to share again. I enjoy going onsite, too. It is interesting to see and experience the regional differences in the FEC world and how they interact with their communities.


How long have you been in the FEC industry and in what roles?

Well, as we all know Beth brought me into the bowling industry in the late nineties (don’t do the math for my age) as the bookkeeper for the facility she was managing. I worked at two locations for Schumaker & Company as a bookkeeper. From there, I learned the operational side of the bowling business. I also started bowling leagues and found that I enjoyed all the people you meet. Then I went on to work part-time for Trainertainment as the bookkeeper and onsite trainer. Ten years later I left my job of teaching 5th grade to become the Director of Training with Trainertainment, a shift for me in the content of what I share but still being in service and teaching others.


What is the most significant thing you have learned working in the FEC industry?

The most significant thing I have learned is that most all the people I have met are “good” people. They are all working hard to better the industry, keeping in mind that they are in the business of providing fun entertainment to their guest. I love smaller venues that are in the process of growing into the FEC world from traditional bowling centers and watching their transformation and growth.


Which of our core values resonate with you the most?

Being in service to others – I worked in education for 20 years. I get gratification helping, sharing, and interacting with other people. I’m a people person and rarely meet a stranger. I am a big advocate for great guest service and love to share with others when I have experienced great guest service.


What are your favorite movies? Comedy? Drama?

I don’t watch many comedies, but my favorite comedy would be Christmas Vacation, which is a classic. I love realistic/historical fiction. The last movie I watched was The Light Between Oceans. I loved that it was in the post-WWI period. I especially enjoyed watching it from the deck of a cruise ship.

How would you spend a billion dollars?

Well, you know Mister would not let me tell a soul until we had everything in order. Money doesn’t make my world go around, but I would buy property and get my bed and breakfast up and running. I would have a working ranch where I could raise cows and have horses, with huge trees and a house with a wraparound porch. I would move to an easier way of life, low key and back to the basics. I would take care of my family and friends to make sure they were in good shape financially. I would find some way to give back – a veteran’s organization or low-income schools would be my focus.




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