ARCADE REPORT: Penn Skate - Allentown, PA (August 2021)
My wife and oldest son had plans on Saturday, so once again my youngest and I found ourselves with some free time on our hands. What better way to spend it than hitting up an arcade that we haven’t been to in a while? So we hopped in the car and made the hour and a half trek to one of the biggest hidden gems in location pinball…Allentown’s Penn Skate.
Unless you were specifically looking for it, you might never know that behind this nondescript door to a skate park lies one of the most diverse collections of pinball out there. Owner Chris Budinetz has put together an absolutely awesome, eclectic collection of games. No cookie cutter lineup here folks. From the newest game on the floor, Banzai Run, to every skate and bike-themed 🛹 🚴 game imaginable to American Pinball and on and on. Check out this lineup:
Banzai Run (Williams, 1988)
BMX (Bally, 1982)
Bad Cats (Williams, 1989)
Cybernaut (Bally, 1985)
Dirty Harry (Williams, 1995)
Earthshaker (Williams, 1989)
Elvira and the Party Monsters (Bally, 1989)
Elvis (Stern, 2004)
F-14 Tomcat (Williams, 1987)
Ghostbusters (Premium) (Stern, 2016)
High Speed (Williams, 1986)
Hook (Data East, 1992)
Houdini: Master of Mystery (American, 2017)
Junk Yard (Williams, 1996)
Last Action Hero (Data East, 1993)
Metallica (Premium) (Stern, 2013)
Monster Bash (Williams, 1998)
Motordome (Bally, 1986)
Mousin' Around! (Bally, 1989)
Oktoberfest (American, 2018)
Pirates of the Caribbean (Stern, 2006)
Pool Sharks (Bally, 1990)
Radical! (Bally, 1990)
Rollergames (Williams, 1990)
Skateball (Bally, 1980)
The Sopranos (Stern, 2005)
Special Force (Bally, 1986)
Spy Hunter (Bally, 1984)
Transporter the Rescue (Bally, 1989)
So many new games to add to my Pindigo list (which stands at 341 now). Such variety. All of the aforementioned games were working but one. Impressive. So, what did we play? My son and I had to start off on Transporter the Rescue. That’s one that I’ve been interested in playing for years but have never come across. And it didn’t disappoint. What a unique layout. From there we moved on to Stern Electronics Magic and Bally Radical! We played a TON of pinball in the several hours that we were there and we didn’t even come close to playing all of the pins. Not only that, but in speaking with Chris I learned that Penn Skate is in the midst of constructing an expansion to its pinball room. Could you imagine that? They could have enough space for as many as 40 pins!
Ok so the collection is on point, but how much does it cost to play? Ready for this? Ten bucks. That’s it! All of the games are set to Free Play and you can play as long as you want for only ten bucks. Crazy.
Even the vibe of Penn Skate is cool. The shop that you walk through to get to the pins contains all sorts of bikes and skateboards. The skate park is full of ramps, jumps and neat graffiti art.
Penn Skate hosts a regular pinball league that is well attended. If competitive pinball is your thing, you should definitely check it out. My son and I had an absolute blast there yesterday. With the expansion in the queue and a large collection beyond what’s on the floor to draw from, I can’t wait to go back in a few months so that I can put up even more mediocre scores for new games on Pindigo 🙂
If you’re looking for more pictures and write ups of cool arcades, make sure to check out my archives on the new KnappArcade.org website. I also share daily pictures of rare games on the Knapp Arcade Instagram account. Thanks a bunch for reading!