Straw Hat Pizza is identifiable with its upbeat and fun atmosphere. Strategically located in the heart of a community, the restaurants are local gathering hubs for families, sports teams and business meetings. The restaurants use only fresh, locally-grown ingredients; many locations feature video game arcades and TVs to add to the family fun. Straw Hat Pizza was founded in 1959; in 1987, competitor Pizza Hut purchased all the company-owned locations, but the Straw Hat franchisees banded together and won the right to continue the brand. A lower-cost concept called Straw Hat Express is also available, and the franchisor has just launched Straw Hat Grills -- a larger, full-service eatery serving pasta, steak, ribs and burgers in addition to pizza.