Erlton Social has opened in Cherry Hill NJ, offering 24 craft beers on tap, a delicious menu, and a really awesome décor and layout. This is a multi-room facility offering billiards, a private event space, and since they are part of the The Big Event complex, the restaurant leads directly to a large arcade and bowling facility!
Erlton Social officially opened on Friday night, and 42Freeway stopped in early Saturday afternoon. We met up with Marketing Manager Maggie, who gave us a full tour of the restaurant and facilty, and a lot of interesting pieces of information about the property and transformation!
Below is a short 2 minute video overview! Scroll down for photo tour!
And some of you are probably already thinking… “wait wasn’t that? Didn’t it used to be? Isn’t that were the Bobby Clarke gym was?”
Yes! This space was previously the Bobby Clarke gym, and before that it was Jim Correa’s gym going back to the 60s! And within this larger building was also Uncle Al’s Erlton Lounge back in the 70s and more… So this amazing transformation has brought the space back to some of it’s core roots!
The first thing that you’ll notice when entering Erlton Social is… this is a really beautiful bar and restaurant! It’s not basic flat walls and boring seating.. every wall and surface in each of the rooms has a variety of textures and colors, which just makes feel like a place you want to hang out in.
And as you move through the rooms, you’ll see how while there is still a core theme.. each of the rooms has its’s own distinctive style.
And when I say “rooms”, I really mean rooms! The core Erlton Social features 3 distinct rooms; the main bar area, an additional seating area, and a third room for private events.
And then on one side of Erlton Social are two rooms for “shooting pool”! And on the other side is the large arcade.. and of course there is the large 32 lane bowling alley. Well more on all of that.
My wife and I tried a beer each (Bonesaw’s Swoosh and Golden Road’s Pineapple Cart). We then shared a flight sampler which included Spellbound’s Cherry Belgian! You can see the beer list on the Erlton Social website.
For food.. well we had a late breakfast so we went with appetizers. Delicious hot wings with blue cheese, and and Charred Sweet Corn Cheese dip and Tortillas! Both were amazing!
The menu features a mix of appetizers, shareables, and entrees (as expected!) and they are also a variety of options to support different diets.
Burgers are a special house-blended beef. Grilled Chicken includes guacamole and cheese fondue.
Entrees include Salmon atop Shrimp Fried Rice!
And for special diet considerations, they even have gluten-free cauliflower based flat breads!
Everything is fresh… delivered fresh and prepared fresh.
Check their website for the latest menu, as they expect to change it up as the seasons change!
Oh and before we dive deep into the full photo tour, there is one other really interesting aspect to this building and bar… remember when I said Uncle Al’s Erlton Lounge was here also?
Well back in the early 70s a young Bruce Springsteen was starting his career and playing smaller venues, and in 1973 Bruce performed in this building.. in the Erlton Lounge!
Bruce was building a following in South Jersey and Philadelphia as radio station WMMR (Sciaky, Tearson) had discovered his talents early on, and were promoting him on the station.
So with some recognition in the area, in July of 1973… Bruce performed in Cherry Hill, at the Erlton Lounge!
So the really funny and cool extra history bit is while Bruce was definitely buildign a name for himself, not everyone was fully aware.
The newspaper ad for the show listed him as Bruce Springstein! And today the Big Event complex proudly displays that advertisement.
Check out this article at South Jersey Magazine for more on Bruce in South Jersey!
The Photo Tour
From the side entrance, turn right towards the host stand. Beyond that is the main room of Erlton Social.
This largest of several rooms features the main bar and taps, a variety of seating, many televisions.. and just a beautiful decor!
Fun fact, when this area was the Bobby Clarke gym this roomed housed the swimming pool and hot tub!!
Another photo of the main room is below. Beautiful styling! Through that garage door entrance…
… is a second seating area, also with a variety of table seating, and televisions.
Additional televisions are in this second seating area. One one side entrance to this room is the main, bar, and the other side leads to the arcade.
By the way.. in the Bobby Clarke gym days, this room was the basketball court!
Private Events Room
A third room is allocated for seating (just off that prior room we just looked at), which is available for your private event!
Birthday parties, Bat Mitzvahs, Baby Showers, Corporates events! Just reach out to the staff at Erlton Social to lock in your day and time.
The flooring on this room is interesting. It is the original squash/racquetball court from when the original Jim Correa gym was developed in the 60s! While the floor has been refinished, if you look closely you can see some of the dents from people playing racqetball!
Pool Tables! Two Rooms!
There are two pool table rooms within the facility, and they are located close to both Erlton Social and the Bowling Lanes
From the Erlton Social side entrance, if you turned left (instead of right) you’d come to this smaller two table pool room first.
As you can see from the photo, these are convertible tables and can be set up for ping pong.
Since this is a separate room of just two tables, this would make for a great area to have a smaller friends get together say as home-base for a Bachelor or Bachelorette party, or someone’s significant birthday!
The second pool table room is at directly adjacent to the smaller one, and is at the end of the building.
This larger room features SIX pool tables, and typically would have different groups of guests.
Of if it’s not clear.. the liquor license for The Big Event complex covers the whole building! You can take your craft beer with you wherever you go! Bar, Billiards, Arcade and Bowling!
This larger room was previously the weight room when this was gym!
We’re going to head towards the arcade, but wanted to point out that…
Erlton Social has it’s own entrance on the side of the building, and it is also the best entrance to use if you are coming to play pool.
But there is a clever design to the building as the entire inside areas are connected by a continuous loop!
So from that side entrance, this is the hallway/foyer that you enter into (the main entrance is to the right of that gentleman).
In this photo I am standing at the pool table area… and the main bar of Erlton Social is straight ahead!
There is a reason this complex is called The Big Event… they have something fun for everyone!
Which includes a large arcade!
The arcade sits at the front of the building (main entrance) but is also directly next to Erlton Social
This is a real-deal arcade, featuring a large variety of fun newer tech games!
And last but definitely not least… there is a full 32 lane high-tech bowling alley.. and another bar to better serve those who are bowling.
Each lane features the latest computerized scoring systems, digital display screens and televisions!
Marketing Director Maggie tells us that The Big Event took Covid precautions very seriously, and had installed numerous sanitizer stations, lane barriers, and after every bowling session people were told to leave the balls in the lanes.. so that staff could completely sanitize them!
While New Jersey restrictions have mostly gone away in June 2021, they lanes do currently have the dividers… but sometime over the summer they are likely to come down.
This is 100% a family facility, perfect for kid’s birthday parties and other family fun!
The Big Event Cafe
Somehow I missed getting a photo, but positioned between the arcade and bowling alley is the Big Event Cafe!
The Big Event Cafe features fun foods such as Buffalo Wings, Mozzarella sticks, Pretzel bites and french fries.
Check out their menu at the website!
Links and Location
Erlton Social Craft Bar and Kitchen
1536 Kings Highway North
Cherry Hill NJ 08034
The Big Event! Bowling, Arcade, Billiards
1536 Kings Highway North
Cherry Hill NJ 08034