June 20

News : Pinball Museum marks anniversary with tournament : The Roanoke Times

The Roanoke Times has posted a story about the Bumper Bash Tournament held at the Roanoke Pinball Museum Sunday June 19th.


Chris Hancock yelped in frustration when the ball he was attempting to guide through the maze of a pinball machine failed to obey his commands.

Hancock, 55, was one of several people competing in the Bumper Bash tournament in the Roanoke Pinball Museum on Sunday afternoon. Though many of the players were museum regulars, this was Hancock’s first time. His daughter brought him to the event as a Father’s Day gift.

Though he was a newcomer , it was clear to Hancock, of Moneta, why people like it.

“Lights and bells and whistles,” he said, looking around the room, which might cause sensory overload for some.

The Roanoke Pinball Museum opened in Center in the Square exactly one year ago on Sunday, and it held a tournament to mark the occasion.

The tournament was set up like a round of golf, with participants playing on nine machines and trying to reach a certain score with as few balls as possible. A tenth machine was included in case there was need for a tie-breaker.

Chris Rader, the museum’s manager, said the tournament served as a way to commemorate the anniversary while engaging the pinball faithful with something new: competition.


“We really haven’t had that much official competitive events going on here, and we thought it would be a good time to sort of dip our toes into that and see how it goes and see how people like it,” he said.

The year that the museum has been open went by quickly, Rader said. He’s been pleasantly surprised by the support from the community and the distance that some people travel to visit it.

Rader said he believes the nostalgia factor is a big draw, but it’s also, put simply, that a museum full of pinball machines is pretty fun.

“There’s not really any way you can come in here and not have fun,” Rader said.

Read the entire article below :

Thanks to the Roanoke Times and Casey Fabris for the article and picures.