Take a nostalgic trip off the Strip in Las Vegas to check out some of the oldest pinball games and some of the world’s most popular all on display in this ode to the bells, flippers, and lights that we all loved as kids.
It seems that everything has a Hall of Fame these days. Once reserved for athletics and education, now every item you can think of apparently has some nostalgic value and a reason to celebrate its industry’s top performers. While some halls can be stuffy and not interesting to visit, the same cannot be said for the Pinball Hall of Fame, located in the heart of Las Vegas. Here, you can let your mind wander to the games rooms, bars, and pool halls of your youth where you would have found many of these machines.
About the Pinball Hall of Fame
The Pinball Hall of Fame has been open in Las Vegas since 2009 and is located in Paradise, Nevada, to be exact, a few miles east of the Las Vegas Strip. The concept of the Pinball Hall of Fame, however, has been in the works since the 1990s, when its founder Tim Arnold started raising money to add to his collection of machines and put them on display for fans and the curious.
The collection has grown to over 200 games, and while the majority of them are pinball machines from all different decades, there are also a few classic video games that have been added to the collection. The location of the Hall of Fame is such that a regular tourist may not come across it, but in late 2019, there was an application put before the city to build a new property on the south edge of Las Vegas Boulevard. This would make the Hall more accessible to tourists and would allow the collection to grow to up to 600 machines. If that is approved, the building would likely open in early 2021.
Three reasons you should visit the Pinball Hall Of Fame
Pinball is amazing!
Pinball is an incredible game that has seen a significant number of changes in style over the decades, but it continues to be based on the same principle of batting a ball around bumpers to collect points. Seeing the innovations in the game is much easier when you can see hundreds of machines next to one another. This alone is a very good reason to visit the Pinball Hall of Fame.
You can play the games!
Unlike other museums or Halls of Fame, this is a very interactive exhibit. You would be killing yourself if you couldn’t get your hands on some of the games you played as a youngster, and with over 200 on display here, you are very likely going to find your favorite game in the mix! Take your time; all the games are there for your pleasure.
It’s a way to get away from the casinos
So many people come to Las Vegas and never see anything outside of their casino or resort. This is a great reason to get out and check out another piece of Vegas, and before it moves onto the Strip, a reason to drive a few blocks away to see what life is like away from Las Vegas Boulevard.
One thing to remember about the Pinball Hall Of Fame
Most of the reviews of the Pinball Hall of Fame say the same thing – that the games are amazing to see and play, but that the location itself is not very nice. If you are going to visit the Pinball Hall of Fame, bear in mind that this is an older building that is dark and cramped. This will hopefully not be an issue in the new location when it is built, but don’t go into the Tropicana location expecting to be blown away by the décor. This is a home-made Hall of Fame built more on love than on money. You can still enjoy the games and relive some experiences.
Pinball Hall of Fame FAQ
How do I get to the Pinball Hall of Fame?
Given that the Hall of Fame is not on the Strip, your best bet (assuming you don’t have your own car) is to take an Uber or a taxi from your hotel. It isn’t that far a trip, so it won’t cost you too much to get there and back, and it’s worth the trip!
How much is the entry fee?
Herein lies one of the greatest values in all of Las Vegas – there is no entry fee to come to the Pinball Hall of Fame! It is entirely free to visit, although you will have to pay to play the games. The Hall also accepts donations of all sizes to help with the upkeep and with the restoration of new games coming into the facility.
Do I need to book in advance?
No. this attraction is off the Strip, so it doesn’t get a lot of foot traffic. You will be fine simply walking in as long as you are visiting during their open hours.