Flint, MI–Those attending a museum fundraiser this weekend will have the opportunity to play more than 20 pinball machines made between 1947 and 1959.
The event, Pinball of the Golden Era, is being held at the Stockton House Museum, an 1872 Victorian mansion located at 720 Ann Arbor St. Flint, MI.
Each of the pinball machines will be set to free play mode. In addition to the games, the event’s $25 admission includes a house tour and snacks. A cash bar will be open each night from 8 p.m. to midnight.
“We decided to come up with an event that would be fun and something totally different, unique, that, you know, you can’t go too many places and experience this,” said Stockton House Museum President Bill Gainey.
Some of the machines present at the event will see their first public use in decades.
“One of the games I have is a 1959 Crossword, and in 1964, Dick Clark of American Bandstand gave it to his neighbor in Pennsylvania because he was moving to Hollywood. I’ve got a letter from Dick Clark that talks about the machine and I’ve got the whole lineage from them all the way to us,” Gainey said. “That machine was built in 1959. By 1964, that was off location; location is where they were making money. That machine hasn’t made money since 1964. When our event happens, that will be back on location for the first time since 1964.”
The pinball machines come from Gainey’s personal collection, with Stanley’s Moving helping to transport the machines, which can weigh upwards of 150 pounds, from his house to the museum.
Gainey said that he expects large turnout for the event, reaching beyond the Stockton House Museum’s normal audience.
“We’re expecting a lot of people. There’s going to be people from out of state coming to our event. That’s what we liked about this whole thing, from our perspective; we have events here at the Stockton House Museum, and we draw certain regulars, but with this we’re not only going to bring in the regulars, we’re going to bring people from far out to come here. Because they love pinball machines, it’s their hobby, and it’s something fun to do,” Gainey said. “So, it’s kind of cool to be able to bring people into Flint.”
Tickets for the event cost $25 and are available on the museum’s website. It will run 5 p.m. to midnight Friday, Nov. 19, and 1 p.m. to midnight Saturday, Nov. 20.