Location: The bottom floor of Crown Center by the Coterie Theater.  Crown Center is at 2450 Grand Boulevard in Kansas City, Missouri.  Fritz’s does have other locations throughout the Metro area.

Cost:  It entirely depends on what you order.  Their menu is available on their Web site, below.

Web site

Fritz’s just may be the coolest diner ever, especially if you’re a train fan.  From having wandered around Crown Center before, I knew that Fritz’s had a train theme:  there’s a big faux engine in front of the diner, and kids would emerge from the diner with paper engineer hats with Fritz’s logo on them.  I had absolutely no idea how well they made their theme work, how good the food was or how much fun the restaurant would be.

If you like trains, you’ve got to go to Fritz’s. There are running trains everywhere.  There’s an Amtrak train that runs along the outer wall–there are windows at the end of your booth so you can watch the train go by.  There’s a big model train set in the middle of the restaurant next to some of the other booths.  Best of all, a train engine delivers your food to you.  No, really–a little engine toting a Fritz’s tub with your order in it will toot-toot across rails along the ceiling, drop its payload on a metal platform at your table, and the platform will lower down to your table so you can get your food.  How cool is that?

You order your dinner using a black “telephone” at the table.  The service is excellent–people made sure we were ok and well taken care of throughout our meal.  They even gave us a sani-wipe to clean off the highchair (as all parents know–restaurant high chairs get naaaasty.  This was definitely a thoughtful touch!).  The food is good–Efrit liked the onion rings, and I was tickled with the fried ‘shrooms.  Peanut had no complaint about his chicken nuggets, as he was too busy eating them and watching the room in wonder to offer any real opinion.

Peanut was fascinated by the trains going by, constantly saying, “Train!!  Oooh!  Oooh!”  Tracking the deliveries across the ceiling was a good activity for him to work with his visual fields–his upper/top field is especially challenging for him.  The trains make noise and have lights, so they’re sure attention-getters, and the ones in the walls are close enough that they’re easy to see.  It was good food, a good meal, and a good activity for Peanut to practice tracking things through multiple visual fields.  The lighting was a little dim for reading the menu–I was fine, but Efrit found it challenging–but otherwise, Fritz’s just can’t be beat.

Efrit was every bit as enraptured by the trains as Peanut, so he went a bit wild with the photos for this spot.  Hence, the slide show below:

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