World's Only Pinball Museum, Las Vegas, NV

TRAVEL TIPS, road trip journey queries, motels, coffee shops, drive-ins, bowling alleys, dinner houses, gas stations, giant objects, signs, theme parks, Disneyland, and roadside sites to see along the way

Moderators: I_LUV_POWER!!!!, Joe, Adriene, moderns-r-us, Tony, Futura Girl, sean, nichols, Java

[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable
User avatar
Lynxwiler
Modern Guru
Posts: 1302
Joined: Thu Aug 29, 2002 10:06 am
Location: Far from the crowds in downtown LA
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

World's Only Pinball Museum, Las Vegas, NV

Postby Lynxwiler » Mon Feb 26, 2007 4:44 pm

World's First Pinball Museum

http://www.lasvegasnow.com/Global/story.asp?s=5866469
Jan 8, 2007 07:41 AM
Ky Plaskon, Reporter

It's probably been a long time since you've had the itch to hit the plunger and knock a chrome ball around with the flipper. That's because the once popular game of pinball has virtually disappeared.

But Las Vegas is an exception thanks to the world's one and only pinball museum. Eyewitness News took a trip around the bumpers.

Las Vegas postman Fletcher Corey is like a kid in candy story as he wanders around the machines. "It's been a long time since I played pinball machines." He adds, "He has some really old ones, wow, look at them."

Welcome to operator Tim Arnold's world. "I don't pay, I get it free," Arnold likes to point out.

He sees players like Corey every day. "Total waves of nostalgia, where they can play games that they haven't seen since they were a kid," Arnold said. He admits it also has the same impact on him.

"I don't like the new stuff, I am an old fool. I like the old school." Here at the one and only pinball museum you can play with the artifacts of the pinball machine world.

"If you look at that one, that is early 50's if you look at the one next to it, that is obviously the swinging 60's. It is psychedelic."

Arnold has collected games from as early as the 40's. "Oh there are some real cream puffs in here but I am not going to tell you which ones," Arnold says.

Since this is a museum, we wouldn't be doing justice if we didn't have a line about pinball's impact on the world. To understand you don't have to look much deeper, Arnold opens the lid of one of the machines.

"See it is just a nest of moving gizmos and wires." Nestled in the wiring is the birth of the computer.

"That is the predecessor to the central processor, the cams move and the switches close in a certain order, that causes things to happen," Arnold says.

Below the flashing lights, pinball was introducing the public to the age of digital interaction. But then the trip through pinball history abruptly ends at one very unique machine.

"You go up the elephant's snout and he tilts his head back and then the giraffe takes it up to the evil clown's head. You can't have a circus game without an evil clown."

Arnold describes one of only two machines in the world. "There are people flying in from all over the country just to play this machine. It is like the holy grail of pinballdom."

This was supposed to be the next generation, the evolutionary pinball crescendo that never happened. Arnold says game makers made pinball too hard, they kept trying to trick people into putting in more money too. Instead people moved on and the sun set on pinball. It seemed like the game was doomed says Arnold.

"They didn't save anything. They got done running the machine and went on to the next one. They totally forgot about their past."

But a die-hard fan club of pinball players didn't forget. "Pinhead is the term. We like to be called pinheads and there are different levels of the sickness," Arnold said.

He admits he has the sickness. "I kept stacking them up in a warehouse and one day I had 1,000 of them and said well, what happens when I put them all in an arcade." For Arnold and the museum, just keeping a couple hundred machines working is a meticulous chore.

He scrounges for parts from old beaten up machines. "This one was out in some guy's yard. It got rained on. So we had to go in and take all that surface rust off of there."

Arnold has a full-time staff repairing machines. It's the sounds that keep them going.

"You can hear the old games have bells, mechanical bells, I miss that everything is electronic and digital now."

The bulbs he can replace, some parts he has to manufacture because the brittle plastic is hard to come by. Arnold admits he hates digital electronics. He also sees it as the downfall of the pinball machine.

"Kids want stupid games where they run around the video screen and chase monsters and shoot people and pinball is a thinking game. You have to shift your strategy as you are playing."

Children who unsuspectingly wandering into the museum are perplexed by what they see says Arnold. "Kids who come in here. They look at it. They don't understand it. They say 'where is the dance machine. Every day I hear it 100 times, 'where's the dance machine', where's the kung-fu machine?'"

The saving grace for Arnold is that while times have changed the price hasn't. "You can spend literally all night here playing great games from the past for literally $5."

One child who comes regularly, Camille Runge has a lot of trouble trying to tell her friends about this large mechanical game called pinball.

"There are these things at the top and sometimes you hear this banging noise and that means you got a credit."

But that's what makes it a museum something you just can't understand unless you see it or play it. Parents are also bringing their children here to learn about our digital past. Not to mention, it's a place where everyone can feel like a kid -- even adults.

The museum is located at 3330 E. Tropicana in Las Vegas, Nevada 89121.

User avatar
Lynxwiler
Modern Guru
Posts: 1302
Joined: Thu Aug 29, 2002 10:06 am
Location: Far from the crowds in downtown LA
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

Postby Lynxwiler » Mon Feb 26, 2007 5:00 pm


User avatar
Gnomus
Modern Master
Posts: 372
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:02 pm
Location: Santa Monica, CA
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

Postby Gnomus » Mon Feb 26, 2007 6:48 pm

This was on my "to do" list when I made a short trip to Vegas in December, but what with my friend doing the marathon and driving around taking photos of the old motels on Fremont Street, I just didn't get to it. Now I'm kicking myself... and making plans for the next trip!

User avatar
Synthetrix
Modern Master
Posts: 185
Joined: Fri Dec 13, 2002 4:02 pm
Location: Wilmington, CA
Contact:

Postby Synthetrix » Fri Mar 30, 2007 10:27 pm

Synthetrix Photos of the Forgotten
http://photosoftheforgotten.synthetrix.com/

User avatar
roadsidepictures
Special Secret Modern Agent
Posts: 684
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2004 11:21 pm
Location: Nampa, Idaho
Contact:

Postby roadsidepictures » Sat Mar 31, 2007 8:35 am


Dustyman73
Modern Master
Posts: 184
Joined: Sat Mar 22, 2003 10:41 pm
Location: Fresno, CA
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

Postby Dustyman73 » Sat Mar 31, 2007 9:04 am


User avatar
Gnomus
Modern Master
Posts: 372
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:02 pm
Location: Santa Monica, CA
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

Postby Gnomus » Mon Apr 30, 2007 10:37 am

Well, I'm back from Vegas and points east, and stopped by the Pinball Hall of Fame. Much to my surprise, I realized I had been there before, probably in the early 90s -- and forgotten all about it.

Essentially the place is a large arcade, but instead of just stocking the latest games, their selection spans the decades. Other than handwritten cards on some of the games giving a little history, there's nothing there that you would expect from a non-profit museum-type of place. I think that's why it didn't stick in my mind. California Extreme in San Jose (a yearly gathering of game owners where people pay to get in, but can play all the games for free) is a slightly better deal in my opinion if you want to experience classic games.

The high point of this visit was the chance to play Circus Pinball, one of only two built. The cool thing about this game is that it's stacked up with different levels, so the cabinet is about six feet tall. This was also its downfall, as it took up more room than a regular game, and didn't really attract more business.

Mr. Atomic
Modern Groupie
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Jul 29, 2007 11:09 am
Location: Brea, CA
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

Postby Mr. Atomic » Thu Aug 02, 2007 1:21 pm


User avatar
Gnomus
Modern Master
Posts: 372
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:02 pm
Location: Santa Monica, CA
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

Postby Gnomus » Thu Aug 02, 2007 7:57 pm

Yes, the games are well-maintained. I hope I didn't give anyone the impression that it wasn't a good place to visit.

I like all games, generally speaking, but I have a special fondness for the old mechanicals. There's something about hitting a target and seeing it drop that brings back my childhood.

User avatar
Synthetrix
Modern Master
Posts: 185
Joined: Fri Dec 13, 2002 4:02 pm
Location: Wilmington, CA
Contact:

Postby Synthetrix » Wed Aug 15, 2007 9:51 pm

Synthetrix Photos of the Forgotten

http://photosoftheforgotten.synthetrix.com/

User avatar
Gnomus
Modern Master
Posts: 372
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:02 pm
Location: Santa Monica, CA
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

Postby Gnomus » Mon Oct 06, 2008 6:57 pm

Here are a few mid-century games from the Las Vegas Pinball Museum. I took these early last year, so some of these may not be in the collection now...

Image

Image

Image

Image


[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 1266: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable

Return to “Roadside Rambling”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests