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Spring Garden arcade company expands as industry grows
A Spring Garden Township arcade distribution company is "powering up" to a larger facility as the industry enjoys a rebirth in popularity.
M&P Amusement will move into a 13,260-square-foot building at 1511-1539 Mount Rose Ave. from its current approximately 7,000-square-foot hub at 351 N. East St., according to Gene Goodman, vice president and manager of operations.
The company, which has been in the York area since 1932, specializes in restored and refurbished arcade equipment, Goodman said, adding that it is one of the only such businesses in the country.
The extra space is needed, Goodman said, because of major growth that has allowed M&P to go from five employees in 2013 to 12 employees now.
"Arcades took a nasty hit in the '90s and 2000s with the rise of (devices including) PlayStations and Xboxes," he said. "The industry went more toward ticket-redemption type games."
The arcade industry went from $12 billion in sales during 1982 to just $100 million in 1985, according to a graphic posted on the company's site.
Bar arcades: The industry has seen major growth in recent years thanks to an increase in the popularity of arcades that serve alcohol, Goodman said.
Timeline Arcade, not associated with M&P, has taken advantage of this trend with BYOB nights at its Hanover location, but the company was recently denied a BYOB permit for its York City location, because police only approve permits for restaurants, according to owner Brandon Spencer.
Spencer said he understands the police's concerns in denying their application, but he is continuing to work on a resolution.
Goodman said that while arcades continue adding bars, established bars also are adding arcade games. Numerous bar owners have bought Skeeball machines from M&P to replace pool tables, he said.
Skeeball machines, which Goodman said are the company's best seller, range in price from $1,000 to $5,500, according to M&P's website.
Games for sale on the company's site include: air hockey, basketball machines, cranes, foosball, pinball machines, poker tables and shuffleboards.
Goodman said the most the company has fetched for a single machine was $35,000 for a 1930s Rockola World Series baseball game, which involves elements of pinball.
M&P also offers event rentals for $200-$300 per machine, he said.