Caine's Arcade Is Closing as Boy Pursues New Dream

Bicycles are a passion for Caine Monroy, and he plans to turn it into a business.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The hugely popular cardboard arcade is closing so its 10-year-old creator can focus on a new goal: opening up his own bike shop. Lolita Lopez reports from Boyle Heights for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on July 12, 2013. (Published Friday, Jul 12, 2013)

    Caine Monroy, the imaginitive young boy whose cardboard arcade made him an instant Internet sensation, is growing up, and apparently so is his business savvy.

    Two years after building Caine's Arcade in his father's autoshop in Boyle Heights and thousands of visitors later, the 10-year-old is shutting down his operation and embarking on a new entrepreneurial adventure: a bicycle shop.

    Inspired by Caine's Arcade, Cardboard Challenge to Draw Hundreds

    [LA] Inspired by Caine's Arcade, Cardboard Challenge to Draw Hundreds
    On Saturday, "Caine's Arcade" in Boyle Heights will be the center of a worldwide event, inspired by a cardboard arcade built by Caine Monroy's. Lolita Lopez reports for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Oct. 5, 2012. (Published Friday, Oct 5, 2012)

    Caine got the idea after buying a new bike and giving his old one a makeover.

    "I painted it, sanded it, bought new grips, bought new tires," he said.

    Caine's Arcade Continues to Inspire

    [LA] Life Connected: Caine's Arcade Continues to Play, Inspire
    Months after a film of his creation went viral, Caine Monroy's cardboard arcade is inspiring students and teachers, and attracting celebrities, like Jack Black. The 9 year old built Caine's Arcade in his dad's Boyle Heights auto shop and raised more than $250,000 toward college and foundations that foster kids' creativity. Lolita Lopez reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on June 26, 2012. (Published Wednesday, Jun 27, 2012)

    Caine's Arcade became a destination spot after a film made about his handmade games went viral. Since April 2012, the video has more than 7 million online views.

    Caine's father said they constantly receive visitors, and the college scholarship fund created for his son now stands at more than $236,000.

    $2 Cardboard Arcade: "Best Deal of My Life"

    [LA] Youngster's $2 Cardboard Arcade in Boyle Heights: "Best Deal of My Life"
    “He built .. this elaborate arcade world without having any customers, just with that sense that if you build it they will come," says filmmaker Nirvan Mullick, whose video of Caine Monroy’s all-cardboard arcade has gone viral. The 9-year-old’s achievement -- at his father's auto parts business in Boyle Heights -- has inspired the creation of a college fund for more than $80,000. NBC4's Lolita Lopez reports from Los Angeles. (Published Thursday, Apr 12, 2012)

    Caine's vision and sense of entrepreneurship has led to meetings with celebrities -- his favorite is Los Angeles Clippers star Chris Paul. He became the youngest speaker at the University of Southern California's Marshall School of Business and Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Caine recently spoke at a TED teen talk hosted by Chelsea Clinton and had a little fun during a trip to Washington, D.C. to meet with the secretary of education.

    The closing of the arcade at 538 N. Mission Rd. on Aug. 3 will also be a celebration of Caine's birthday. However, while he may be off to junior high and starting work on his other project, the arcade and its inspiration will live on. It will become a traveling arcade in a partnership with Toms shoes, his father said.

    The Imagination Foundation, which spawned from Caine's Arcade, will have another Global Day of Play on Oct. 5. The goal is to engage 1 million kids in 70 countries in creative play and provide curriculum to schools around the world.

    Caine also has advice for anyone pursuing something new.

    "Just believe in yourself," he said.

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