Pinball Hall of Fame offers 25-cent family fun on the Las Vegas Strip, donated $1.2M to charity in 2023

Call it pinball for peace.

The Pinball Hall of Fame in Las Vegas, Nevada offers a step back in gametime amid the high-priced neon glitz and schlock of Sin City — and does it all for good causes.

“We’re a bunch of old hippies who are busted and just like to hang out and play pinball and raise money,” the Hall of Fame’s Tim Arnold told Fox News Digital. His title is “director of stuff and things.”

The organization donated $1.2 million to local causes last year, most of it to the Salvation Army, he said.

MAPLE BUTTER OFFERS A SWEET AND SECRET TASTE OF SPRINGTIME IN NORTH AMERICA

The Pinball Hall of Fame is Arnold’s 25,000-square foot arcade with 700 classic pinball machines, some dating back to the 1950s.

It’s free to enter, open to families — and games cost just 25 cents to 50 cents to play. The non-profit is staffed by volunteers.

The Pinball Hall of Fame offers 700 different pinball and other arcade games. It’s located at 4925 Las Vegas Boulevard South, Las Vegas. (Kerry J. Byrne/Fox News Digital)

“It’s a lot of fun for not a lot of money,” Las Vegas resident Dianne Gilmore Schippert told Fox News Digital.

She called it “back to old school” family entertainment.

AMERICAN CULTURE QUIZ: TEST YOUR COMMAND OF MUSIC AND FILM ICONS – AND MORE

“The Pinball Hall of Fame is an attempt by the members of the Las Vegas Pinball Collectors Club to house and display the world’s largest pinball collection, open to the public,” claims its website.

The charitable mission does not prevent the Pinball Hall of Fame from flaunting the same promotional bravado of any other local attraction.

It’s located on Las Vegas Boulevard – “The Strip” – between the city’s landmark “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” sign and the sprawling Mandalay Bay resort.

Dianne Gilmore Schippert of Las Vegas, Nevada, plays the pinball game Space Station at the Pinball Hall of Fame in Las Vegas.  (Kerry J. Byrne/Fox News Digital)

The arcade announces itself with 60-foot-tall letters on the façade screaming “PINBALL.”

“We put up that sign so that the Martians could find us,” said Arnold. “But so far only pinball players have found us.”

A roadside retro neon sign points the way back to gaming history.

GEORGIA WOMAN CREATES ‘MISSED RSVP’ CARDS FOR WEDDING GUESTS WHO DON’T RESPOND BY DEADLINE: ‘INCONSIDERATE’

Pinball exploded onto the American entertainment scene during the Great Depression and reached its heyday in the 1970s, before electronic video games grew in popularity.

Licensing deals with movies and bands have inspired a rebirth in pinball in recent years, said national pinball expert and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania restaurant owner Steve Zumoff.

The Pinball Hall of Fame, Las Vegas, Nevada, announces its presence with 60-foot-tall letters on its facade.  (Kerry J. Byrne/Fox News Digital)

Video games have patterns,” he told Fox News Digital. “Pinball games are mechanical. Every game is different. Even the same game plays differently for different people.”

The noise, the flashing lights and the ability to control the game give pinball eternal appeal, said Zumoff.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR OUR LIFESTYLE NEWSLETTER

Tiki Lounge, his Polynesian-themed Pittsburgh place, offers Metallica and Godzilla pinball games.

“Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” greets visitors to Sin City as they drive northward on Las Vegas Boulevard South. (Kerry J. Byrne/Fox News Digital)

The sudden soaring of pinball’s popularity in the 1930s raised the ire of public officials, who saw it as a form of gambling and a gateway game to deepening vice.

Pinball operators were “slimy crews of tinhorns, well-dressed and living in luxury on penny thievery,” New York City Mayor Fiorello La Guardia raged, according to Smithsonian Magazine.

“By the late 1930s, La Guardia had enough,” the magazine added.

“He began commanding the police to seize pinball machines, smash them to pieces and dump them in the Hudson River, eventually destroying fully 11,000.”

For more Lifestyle articles, visit www.foxnews.com/lifestyle.

Kerry J. Byrne is a lifestyle reporter with Fox News Digital.

Check Also

7 ways to stay safe in this summer’s scorching heat

With a dangerous early-seasonheat wavegripping the West Coast and more scorching high temperatures expected throughout …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *