The Pinball Hall of Fame is a museum for pinball machines that opened in Paradise, Nevada in January 2006. It is located at 1610 E Tropicana Ave. It’s slated to be open its new location on the Las Vegas Strip at 4915 S. Las Vegas Boulevard, in January 2021, between Mandalay Bay and the Harley-Davidson store.
The museum is a project of the Las Vegas Pinball Collectors Club, and it features pinball machines from all eras, including some very rare machines such as Williams’ Black Gold, Bally’s Pinball Circus, and Recreativos Franco’s Impacto. It features over 200 different pinball games, including some classic video arcade games and other novelty machines of the past and present.
The Pinball Hall of Fame is a nonprofit venture and its creation came about in part due to donations, which are still accepted. The museum is run by Tim Arnold, a veteran arcade operator who ran “Pinball Pete’s” in East Lansing, Michigan. Fully staffed by volunteers, excess revenues are donated to the Salvation Army.
Pinball Hall of Fame History
Since 1990, Tim Arnold has been busy with this project, raising money selling DVDs (and VHS tapes) about pinball repair and organizing pinball ‘fun nights’ at his own house. There he also has a very large personal collection of pinball machines.
The Pinball Hall of Fame’ was originally located at 3300 E Tropicana Ave, Las Vegas NV 89121 and featured approximately 200 pinball machines, classic video games, and arcade games. This original location opened in January 2006 and was located approximately one mile east from its present location. In late 2009, the Pinball Hall of Fame moved to its new location at 1610 E Tropicana Ave.
In 2016, Tim Arnold denied reports he was looking for a successor or he would close the museum. Instead, there are plans to expand The Pinball Hall of Fame by constructing a new building on a lot on the Las Vegas Strip.
From Tim Arnold himself off the PHoF Website:
That ‘cheap side’ approach gives the Pinball Hall of Fame its disarming, thrift-store feeling. The royal-blue carpet? It’s scrap from a Convention Center weekend show. The change machines? Grabbed from the Golden Nugget’s trash dock before the garbage men came. But it’s not about cutting corners – it’s about maintaining an almost obsessive focus on the pinball games themselves. Forget about public relations, marketing, uniforms, or even a sign outside. ‘If the games play, the people will come, quarters at the ready. There’s stuff here that hasn’t been seen since my mom was a kid. And it’s all up here, and it’s playable.’
Learn more on their website.
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