auction

More Than 1,000 Arcade Games Are Up for Auction as Museum of Pinball Closes Its Doors

The 40,000-square-foot museum is closing after the nonprofit says lengthy coronavirus public health lockdowns took a toll on its financial situation.

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More than 1,000 arcade games, including a plethora of pinball machines dating back decades, are going on the auction block.

This weekend, and again later this month, the items will be sold off as the Museum of Pinball in Banning prepares to close its doors for good. The 40,000-square-foot museum will host live and online bids Friday, Saturday and Sunday on the floor of the facility, located at 700 S. Hathaway St.

The nonprofit announced in July that because of the lengthy coronavirus public health lockdowns, its financial situation had turned dire, and options had run out. There was an attempt to relocate the roughly 1,100 vintage pinball machines and digital arcade games to a venue in nearby Palm Springs, but the effort fell through, according to reports.

“It’s just sadness,” founder John Weeks told the New York Times. “People would come from all over the world to go to this place.”

The museum touts the largest collection of classic pinball and arcade games in the world. Some of the pinball titles include "Addams Family Gold
Special,'' "Big Bang Bar,'' and "Magic Girl.''

Among the digital arcade games are Atari's "Star Wars Cockpit'' and "Paperboy,'' Exidy's "Death Race'' and the "Bally Midway Discs of Tron.''

The museum's collection is valued in excess of $8 million, according to the auctioneer, Captain's Auction Warehouse of Anaheim.

"While it's disappointing to see the Museum of Pinball close its doors, I am confident that Captain's Auction Warehouse will steer the games in the right direction as we've worked together for many years,'' Weeks said.

Bidding will start at 3 p.m. Friday in the museum, as well as online.

Additional auctions will be held Saturday and Sunday, beginning at 11 a.m. Product previews will be available between noon and 3 p.m. Friday, and between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. on the weekend.

All inventory not auctioned by Sept. 13 will be up for grabs during a final bid event scheduled for Sept. 24-26, according to the museum.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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