In the late 70’s in Little Rock, Arkansas, two establishments existed side by side in location but worlds apart in concept.
Inside the classic setting of the Missouri Pacific Train Station, two very different establishments enjoyed a brisk trade. A man named Buster ran a favorite watering hole. Buster’s restaurant boasted casual elegance, warm historic ambience and wonderful eclectic food served up by some of the friendliest people in town.
Next door another man was also enjoying a bustling business. Dave ran “Slick Willy’s World of Entertainment.” Here people were almost irresistibly drawn by his selection of outrageous fun and games for big people. These two young entrepreneurs and neighbors became fast friends.
“Are You Thinking What I’m Thinking?”
Dave and Buster soon discovered they had a unique traffic phenomenon. Patrons would often be seen going from one business to the other. An idea began to form: What would happen if they put both establishments under one roof?
After a year or so of scratching out a rough plan, Dave and Buster gathered a few hard-earned dollars, a few close friends and went in search of the right location to begin building a dream.
Long before frequent flier programs, several thousand air miles led the two young men to “Restaurant Row” in Dallas, Texas. There, perched right at the end, they found an empty 40,000 square-foot warehouse.
Having been proclaimed certifiably crazy by many in the restaurant industry, Dave and Buster dove headlong into construction. By December of 1982, the doors were opened on the very first “Dave & Buster’s.”
Perseverance, faith and scores of talented people put Dave & Buster’s on the map for good. The Dave & Buster’s family has grown to include locations across the country and around the world.
Great food and big fun served up by the friendliest people in town: that’s always been our guiding principle… and not such a crazy idea after all.