8 Hangout Spots From the 1970s That Deserve a Redux

Pull out your roller skates and loosen up your trigger fingers because we're digging up some of the coolest hangout spots from the 1970s.

Published February 15, 2024

Metaverse’s epic failure showed us that you can’t beat the real thing. Unfortunately, so many of the best hangout spots have been lost to time. But you can’t keep a good thing down, and maybe we can harness that sequel energy that’s gripped the nation to bring them back.

So we’re digging up some of the greatest 1970s hangout spots tucked away in the time capsules of our minds.

Godfather's Pizza


When you think of a children’s restaurant hotspot, Chuck E. Cheese probably comes to mind. But Godfather’s Pizza lured kids decades before the mouse — and their pizza was actually good.

Kids in the 70s flocked to Godfather’s Pizza (and other pizzerias) to waste the hours after school or on weekends while their parents were busy working and running errands. But what made this pizza joint so special was the in-house arcade games. That arcade section in every 90s pizza place can thank Godfather’s for starting the trend.

Record Shops


In the 70s, the only way you could hear new music was through the radio or by heading to a record store and sampling the latest sounds. Record shops like Record Bar and Tower Records became sweet hangout spots for teens and 20-somethings to veg out and toss music recommendations back and forth.

If you were an audiophile in the 70s, then you spent every last penny you made on the newest 45 RPMs. Record shops might not have been the most frenzied or energetic places to hang, but they were perfect for like-minded folks to find their people.

Roller Rinks


Roller skating has never been as cool as it was in the 1970s. With micro satin shorts, knee-high banded socks, and teeny halter tops, teens roller discoed their way across the slick hardwood. If you weren’t spending your late nights catching the latest slasher flick or working a part-time job, you were probably showing off your twirls under the disco lights.

Roller discoing in the 1970s was like swing dancing for their parent’s generation. It was fun and flirty and housed a ton of kids under one roof.



Most people know the YMCA for the Village People’s legendary dance track “Y.M.C.A.” and not the actual recreation center that it is. Back in the 70s, the YMCA was a hopping summertime spot. From kids escaping the blistering heat at the large pools to teens roughhousing with rec games of softball, baseball, soccer, and more, the whole neighborhood flocked to the YMCA.

Given the tumultuous economic time that was the 70s, you couldn’t pass up on a free place with lots of stuff to do and the YMCA was many folks’ answer.

Head Shops


You can’t talk about 1970s hangout spots without mentioning head shops. Today, they’ve been repackaged as smoke shops but these mother’s medicine-oriented stores were all about extending that counterculture style well past its heyday.

Make friends with the burnout at the counter and you’d have an everyday haven to waste hours at. Pull up a bean bag, and browse through the magazines, home goods, and plant medicines at your disposal.

Related: 14 Odd Things From the 70s You Might Not Remember

The Mall


Unfortunately, the malls we once knew and loved are mostly dead. But in the 1970s, they were a thriving hotspot for every social group under the sun. Career women could gab while browsing for new button-downs and pantyhose, kids could splash around at the edge of the water fountains, and teens could hog the few food court seats available.

Malls were a microcosm of American capitalism, so of course people couldn’t get enough of the pseudo-society within its many walls.



By the end of the 70s, arcades were a massively popular place to hang out. Atari — the first popular at-home video game console — wasn’t released until 1977 and it still took a few years for everyone to afford one. This meant that you couldn’t get your pinball wizard kicks in unless you went to the arcade.

Kids and teens of all ages could spend hours tossing their pocket change at Space Invaders or Galaga. There was no greater insult at the local arcade than blasting through someone’s high score, especially if you didn’t like them much.



Love it or hate it, the 1970s was a delightful disco era. Discotheques popped up in cities all around the world where they pumped out ear-splitting dance tracks that everyone (literally) danced the night away to. You knew you were a different breed of people if you didn’t want to claw your eyes out after ten minutes under those strobe lights.

Sure, you might not know anyone’s name at the end of the night, but you’d be willing to hold their hair while they puked in the toilet. Discotheques like Studio 54 brought levity and camaraderie to the club scene, and it might be why we still long to dance under disco balls today.

These 70s Hangout Spots Deserve Their Own Sequels


There aren’t a ton of positive angles to growing up in the 1970s when you’ve got murder, economic crisis, widespread emotional burnout, and fruitless wars topping the list. But we’d trade coming to grips with the nation’s loss of innocence if it meant we could bring back these incredible hangout spots.

8 Hangout Spots From the 1970s That Deserve a Redux