The first CheeZies Pizza opened in Glenpool, OK in 2004 with a simple mission: “To provide an excellent pizza at an unbelievable price”. Since that day, CheeZies Pizza locations across the region have continued to deliver on that promise, with an unwavering commitment to making fantastic pizzas, calizones, and sandwiches from quality ingredients at a great price.
The goal at CheeZies Pizza is for every family to be able to enjoy an outstanding pizza without spending a lot of money. That goal is achieved every day by combining fresh dough, real dairy cheeses, choice meats, our signature sauces, and the very best toppings, for a unique and affordable dining experience.
In developing the CheeZies franchise model, founder B.J. Demond envisioned a concept that would be simple for both the customer AND the operator. CheeZies stores are primarily located in high-traffic, multi-family, predominantly urban areas, where ease-of-ordering, quick production, and true value are equally important dining decisions. By operating during peak hours, with a streamlined menu and unbeatable pricing, CheeZies Pizza stores were designed from the outset to meet these specific dining criteria. Today, the CheeZies Pizza franchise map has grown to include stores in Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri.
A Little History
CheeZies founder B.J. Dumond has fond memories of his first pizza shop in Sand Springs, OK in 1984, and the life lesson he learned on one fateful night.
“I’ll never forget our first Tuesday night All-You-Can-Eat buffet,” B.J. recalls. “It was just our second day of being opened, and my wife Becky and I were so excited. The dining area was full of about 80 folks, and we had our big deck oven that we used at the time packed with 28 pizzas for the buffet.
“I was out in the dining area, shaking hands and thanking folks for coming, when all of a sudden Sister Tabor from the local Pentecostal church very sweetly said to me, ‘Mr. Pizza Man, I think your wife needs you in the back.’
“Well, I assured her that Becky could handle anything that might be going on in the kitchen, but Sister Tabor insisted, ‘Mr. Pizza Man, I think she needs you NOW!’
“So, I turned around to see Becky waving frantically at me from the kitchen, where I saw smoke coming out the door of that big deck oven with all those pizzas in it. And, when I ran over and opened that oven door, and the air started flowing in, all 28 of those pizzas literally went up in flames.
“We spent the next few minutes frantically running flaming pizzas out the back door, past the long line of cars in the drive-through, and throwing them onto a gravel pile behind the shop. We managed to avoid setting the place on fire, but now I had to let all those people sitting in the dining room know what they already suspected.
“ ‘Folks,’ I said to everyone sitting there, ‘I’m afraid I’ve burned all your pizzas. Now, it’s going to about an hour till we can have some more made up for you, and you’re all welcome to enjoy the salad bar and drinks while you wait, but if you’d like a refund, just come on up to the register and Becky will give you your money back.
“After that announcement, I went outside to inform all the cars in line at the window about the bad news. But I was shocked when I came back in the shop, and the place was still full. No one had left.
“I said to Becky, ‘Why is no one getting their refunds?’
“And Becky just grinned and said, ‘Because they all want to wait for their pizzas!’
“The remarkable thing is, NOT ONE PERSON asked for a refund that day. We served pizzas to everyone there that night, way past our normal closing time for the buffet, and we even gave away two free pizzas to the folks in the drive-through who had called in orders before we burned them. And even those folks were great, some of them insisting on paying for their pizzas anyway, throwing money at us through the window when we said their order was free.
“Becky and I learned a powerful lesson that night: when you treat people with honesty and sincerity, you win them over every time. Even the next day after the ‘fire’, when we wondered if we might ever have another paying customer, who was the first customer to show up for lunch? Sister Tabor and her husband – and they brought another couple with them!
“ ‘Oh, Mr. Pizza Man, we just had to bring our friends here today,’ Sister Tabor said. ‘We thought last night was great!’ ”