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Retro Arcade Museum Shut Down Over Arcane Anti-Pinball Law

Retro Arcade Museum
Just a few dozen miles north of the Switched headquarters, in Beacon, New York, lies the Retro Arcade Museum, a storefront on the corner of Main and Schenk Streets loaded with the sorts of vintage arcade goodies that would make even the most steel-willed nerd weep. But an archaic law, one that is more widespread than you might believe, has caused the life's work of Fred Bobrow to be shut down, at least temporarily. It turns out that Beacon still has legislation, dating to the 1940s, that bans pinball machines within the city limits. Beacon wasn't alone in outlawing machines during the era, as most major cities in the U.S., including New York, forbade the machines as well.

The closing of the Retro Arcade Museum has inspired a backlash, including a Facebook page calling for its reopening. The mayor, Steve Gold, has responded to the media attention (as evidenced in the CNN report below), explaining that the shuttering of the museum was based on noise complaints from the building's other tenants. Gold said he worked closely with Bobrow, but that it was a serious challenge to satisfy the needs of the surrounding businesses and residents and to rewrite the ordinance that led to the closing of the business.

For the moment, the Retro Arcade Museum remains closed. But Bobrow, Mayor Gold and city planners are working diligently to save the business, which is a popular attraction in a town otherwise dotted with antique shops and restaurants. You can voice your support for the museum by becoming a fan on Facebook, but remember, this isn't just a story about uptight locals chasing out a hip, young entrepreneur. How would you like to live above clanging pinball machines and beeping arcade games? Might get a little tiresome eventually. Still, it doesn't seem like anything a little high-quality soundproofing couldn't fix. [From: CNN and Front Row Crew Forum, via: Boing Boing]

Tags: arcade, beacon, Beacon NY, BeaconNy, law, museum, noise, pinball, PinballBan, retro arcade museum, RetroArcadeMuseum, top, videogames