Date: March 2010
Report by Doug Maisells
Doug knows pinball in Colorado and Illinois. He pretty much maintains these state's listings in the Pinball Rebel locator and keeps more comprehensive details of places to play across the two states on his own website.
Here, Doug shares with us some of the best places pinball across Colorado.
Hands down the best place to play and the best assortment of games! 35 maintained machines from '60s to some recent titles and if one is not working, Kevin is there in real time fixing them.
Only a few minuses that I see. They are only open Thursday to Sunday, late afternoon through the evening, but you can always head next door to their game room at Oskar Blues Brewpub for three pins and a retro arcade which opens at 11am daily for lunch and brews. Lyons Classic Pinball can also open earlier for special occasions.
I have asked Kevin and Carole to supply certain games there, such as some of the later Stern titles like Elvis and T3, and their reaction was indifferent. They do have an Elvis at an Oskar Blues in Longmont, CO but don't expect to see certain games at the location in Lyons.
Also because it's the best place to play, it attracts the best pinball players in CO and in the world. Tournaments are held there every third Thursday as well as a pinball league, Competition at tournaments can be very serious.
They also keep a high score database posted on their website (reset every August) but it is mostly owned by two high ranked players. Unfortunately some players there believe in only playing at places like that. LCP is a place not to miss but as Gary Stern had said at Pinball Expo 2008, we need to get out to the bowling alleys, bars, patronize the establishments and play pinball. Then convince the owners to keep the machines up to snuff. It's the only way pinball will survive. Great for kids
Nested up high at 9000ft., it was true gem to met John Balogh, the owner of coloradopinball.com. John maintains 13 machines at the Strikes-N-Spares including a Bally Strikes and Spares and a Premier Strikes 'N Spares.
John has been in the business for a long time and knows his stuff. I would certainly buy my first pinball machine from him. A pinball tournament was held there in 2008 but with only limited attendance, as Leadville is approximately 110 miles west of Denver on I-70.
So it's a drive, but it is definitely worth the trip. Great for kids.
This arcade has been here since 1908. They have many old pins including some nickel and dime machines. Occasionally, one of them will get a new mechanism and the
There have some of the newer machines as well (NASCAR, CSI, Lord of the Rings) and those play well. I definitely visit here a couple times a year to play a Captain Fantastic or an Air Aces.
If a ball gets stuck, you will probably get your quarter back instead of getting the ball unstuck in real time. Despite some machines needing work, it is definitely worth the trip.
Great place for kids. Make sure you stop at the Mountain Cafe nearby and have some of their cinnamon flavored ice tea!
A local game vendor and player maintains his machines and usually has a half-dozen machines here. Due to the fact the Grill opens at 10 or 11am, has great beers, live band at times in the other room, and well maintained pins, it is probably the best place to play in metro Denver.
Tournaments are held once a month and the bar will kick in more money the more players they have. Usually gets the newest Stern machine first.
Since the pins are located in another area, a lot of times you can be away from the crowd, have a pretty waitress serve you, and have a good game of pinball.
Kids would probably be OK in the afternoon and early evening but probably not appropriate after 9pm.
A line up of about 8-12 pins, all serviced by a professional game vendor and player.
The only downside is that it is typically only open in the afternoon to evenings depending on when kids are out of school. It is a large pool hall with soda machines only and it attracts a lot of high school kids playing pool. Noisy at night. Worth it for the pins though.
Five pins upstairs in a dark area above bowling alley but well maintained by a professional game vendor and player.
Sometimes the extra ball is left turned off as tournaments are held there monthly.
Open at 11am and there are a number of other establishments within walking distance.
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