(Topic ID: 143227)

Kickstarter (Pinball on the Plains - Fund Fargo Pinball)


By BillPinball

4 years ago



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  • 57 posts
  • 25 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by Boondocker
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    #1 4 years ago

    Greetings Pinside!!

    About a year ago our pinball club here in beautiful Fargo ND shut its doors. My brother and I are collectors and restorers and could not see the collection get parted out and shipped out of the area. There are barely any places to play here in Fargo and we felt we HAD to save the collection and reopen the club! Way up here on the northern plains the closest place to play multiple machines is a 3.5hr drive.

    We just launched our Kickstarter to help us hit the ground running. Any help from the pinball community is greatly appreciated!!

    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/431857788/pinball-on-the-plains-fund-fargo-pinball

    In short, we are a members only private club operating from 6am to 12am seven days a week. We are looking at 30 games minimum when we reopen the doors.

    Please check out our Facebook page and message me with any questions you may have.

    https://www.facebook.com/fargopinball/

    A big thanks to "robin" for allowing us to use some awesome pinball pictures.

    We are looking forward to tournaments, leagues, and the opportunity to give back.

    I thank you for your time and consideration.

    Bill
    Fargo Pinball

    #2 4 years ago

    ???Is this for real???

    The way I read it, you are asking for people to donate so you can start a for profit business?
    Also sounds like you have over 30 games but are asking for help to buy more for your business?

    #3 4 years ago

    We had an arcade around here that had trouble getting going, Rusty Quarters. In their first year, they ran an Indiegogo to get money to cover operating costs. About a year later, they ran another one (and raised like $8000) for the same reason. Maybe 6 months later, they closed their doors.

    https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/save-rusty-quarters-retro-arcade#/

    https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=577930532251703&id=226688464042580

    Good luck with your endeavor, hope things go better with Fargo Pinball. Sometimes these things work out, and it was good to see LTG's SS get a facelift.

    #4 4 years ago
    Quoted from BillPinball:

    About a year ago our pinball club here in beautiful Fargo ND shut its doors.

    Um, I was there in late June, 2015. Fargo Pinball was open and the closing announcement was not yet made. That was four months ago.

    Your brother (unless I am confusing him with the previous owner) was going to let me in as a guest, but was delayed coming back from Duluth so it didn't work out. I had dinner across the street and looked inside. Nice place you had. Maybe reopen in a lower rent district and charge more for memberships and/or per play.

    Good luck.

    #5 4 years ago

    Thanks for the comments guys.

    We did the Kickstarter to give people interested a chance to donate and to help us get a boost out of the gate.

    Even though we own the machines, we want to see the machines as the pinball community's machines here in Fargo. We need to introduce a new group of players and reinvigorate the need for pinball machines.

    We bought out the collection from the previous owner so we would not lose our club. Not really starting a new business, but making sure our pinball club would live on.

    I have donated to a number of for profit ventures/businesses over the years (magazines, games, documentaries, etc) and will likely again.

    We do have 30 machines, but if we can bring some new and awesome games to Fargo that people otherwise would not have the chance to play, heck yeah we are going to do it

    Thank you again.

    Bill
    Fargo Pinball

    10
    #6 4 years ago

    I suggest treating this like a business instead of looking for handouts so you can buy new machines. You have 30 machines... Sell a few and buy something new if that is what you want. Alternatively, go get a loan! With 30 machines if you have a viable business plan any lender will be happy to loan you some money with a standard interest rate.

    Pretty disgusting to come ask for money for something like this IMHO.

    What is it these days when nobody is willing to work hard and take risks. I can assure you that if you have real skin in the game you will take this so much more seriously and hence do a better job. AFTER you open the doors and get things moving and have built a community THEN would be the appropriate time to reach out if you needed help.

    I am curious what happens if you make this spanger goal, buy a few new machines and then close the doors a few months later (history says that is highly likely since the previous iteration failed)? Do you just keep the donated funds and games?

    #7 4 years ago

    Sell a couple machines if you need money. You have 30 of them. I agree with Whysnow, you should look at other ways to raise money other than handouts from the community. Our league could always use more games or space but we dont go mooching money for it. Have some pride man!

    #8 4 years ago

    I think the kickstarter is fine. I will support yours. I also am running a kickstarter for a show in Billings in February:

    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1180836012/big-sky-gaming-expo-february-12-13-2016-billings-m

    The problem we both have is that there are a bunch of vocal guys that got ripped off by JPOP and the predator loser, so now they have to bash every form of crowd funding. When I announced my project, they all did a pile-on because I hurt their feelings when I pointed out the vaporware they were invested in long before anyone dared to question the master creators/scammers.

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/announcing-the-big-sky-gaming-expo-feb-12-13-2016

    I guess they all feel like they are doing their part for the hobby. Too bad they didn't listen to me way back when they could have recovered their malinvestments.

    Good luck on the project!

    #9 4 years ago
    Quoted from SadSack:

    I think the kickstarter is fine. I will support yours. I also am running a kickstarter for a show in Billings in February:
    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1180836012/big-sky-gaming-expo-february-12-13-2016-billings-m
    The problem we both have is that there are a bunch of vocal guys that got ripped off by JPOP and the Predator loser, so now they have to bash every form of crowd funding. When I announced my project, they all did a pile-on because I hurt their feelings when I pointed out the vaporware they were invested in long before anyone dared to question the master creators/scammers.
    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/announcing-the-big-sky-gaming-expo-feb-12-13-2016
    I guess they all feel like they are doing their part for the hobby. Too bad they didn't listen to me way back when they could have recovered their malinvestments.
    Good luck on the project!

    Not sure I agree with you on this. If your charging admission for an Expo then why are you crowd funding? If the Expo is free admission then i'm all for a kickstarter campaign.

    #10 4 years ago

    In my case, the kickstarter is an opportunity to buy in at a discount. I don't need the kickstarter, but it is handy to send exhibitors there to get an idea of what it is.

    And CES is charging $100 for admission this year. CAX was around $50 if I remember right and I think the gate admission is necessary on a free play arcade or you will have 500 elementary kids hogging it.

    BTW, where can I go to attend your pinball show?

    To OP, sorry for the threadjack.

    #12 4 years ago
    Quoted from SadSack:

    The problem we both have is that there are a bunch of vocal guys that got ripped off by JPOP and the Predator loser, so now they have to bash every form of crowd funding.

    the fact that you compare this or your crowdfunding to JPOP and Predator shows exactly where your intent is with your crowdfunding. You are looking for free money.

    The people that bought in and supported with preorders have legal recourse when the individuals did not deliver.
    With this kickstarter shenanigans you are just looking for protection and free $. Your comparison makes it sound like you plan to run off with the funds also?

    Worth mention is that people were not bashing your kickstarter (I actually find it to be slightly more tolerable than this cause). They were bashing that you have commonly been a jerk to people here and then hypocritically come groveling for funds and they dont want to support YOU, despite liking what you are trying to do.

    #13 4 years ago

    How about you guys just put me on ignore and stop littering OP's post with irrelevance?

    #14 4 years ago
    Quoted from Whysnow:

    I suggest treating this like a business instead of looking for handouts so you can buy new machines. You have 30 machines... Sell a few and buy something new if that is what you want. Alternatively, go get a loan! With 30 machines if you have a viable business plan any lender will be happy to loan you some money with a standard interest rate.
    Pretty disgusting to come ask for money for something like this IMHO.
    What is it these days when nobody is willing to work hard and take risks. I can assure you that if you have real skin in the game you will take this so much more seriously and hence do a better job. AFTER you open the doors and get things moving and have built a community THEN would be the appropriate time to reach out if you needed help.
    I am curious what happens if you make this spanger goal, buy a few new machines and then close the doors a few months later (history says that is highly likely since the previous iteration failed)? Do you just keep the donated funds and games?

    I think it is important to clarify a few things. We are not looking for handouts but offering people the opportunity to join and score some rewards via the Kickstarter. Kickstarter also allows us to give people the opportunity to back us outside our local area who may not visit the club but want to support the continued rise of pinball.

    We are personally funding the entire operation and we are opening regardless! (we are locked into our lease)

    I am sorry you are disgusted by our efforts to reopen our club and our Kickstarter but thank you for the bump.

    I am also sorry you don't think we are working hard and are taking risks. Considering the amount of money we are personally financing I would consider that a risk. The doors are opening no matter what and immediately assuming we are not working hard or taking risks simply because we allow people help fund our efforts and vision via micro funding is unfortunate.

    We cannot close a few months later, we are legally locked in and will ensure that our membership has a place to play in Fargo.

    (I love Pinside Drama)

    Again thank you for the bump and have a wonderful day.

    Bill
    Fargo Pinball

    P.S. No worries SadSack, best wishes on your KS and I look forward to my T-shirt

    #15 4 years ago

    How will the club work? So you have to pay a yearly membership fee and also have to pay for all the games you play?

    #16 4 years ago
    Quoted from BillPinball:

    I am sorry you are disgusted by our efforts to reopen our club and our Kickstarter but thank you for the bump.

    I am not disgusted by your effort to support location pinball an reopen your business; I actually applaud it and am thankful that others are fighting the good fight to bring back pinball on route! I do think it is weak sauce to ask for others to support you in this business venture, esp when you already have 30 games in your collection and this is a business model/ not for charity. If it is not a business and you are putting 100% of all funds back into the venture for the love of pinball then I appologize fro assuming differently. To me it all reads as "please give money so we can buy more cool games, and then charge you for membership and the coin drop to play those new games"

    You may not know but I also love and support location pinball. Myself and a few other collectors have put our games out in public for others to play. We have taken on all risk, loans for games, and hardship along the way, and the only dontaions we ask for is coin drop in the games. If I am off base and people want to donate money for route pinball purchases, then feel free to send it my way, LOL. I would love to buy a new Hobbit machine to put out on route, but I am not about to ask for hobbyists to buy that machine for me. (Maybe that is how it works now and I am just old school in my ideas???)

    Good luck in your venture! After you open I would be happy to stop in and drop quarters (even buy a marked up shirt) to help support if I am ever in Fargo.

    It was a smart idea to also sell 1 pinball machine to make the "supporter" amount jump up! I have seen lots of crowd funding stuff not meet goals and that was a genious way to get the dollar value up quickly and also sell a game!

    #17 4 years ago
    Quoted from BillPinball:

    I think it is important to clarify a few things. We are not looking for handouts but offering people the opportunity to join and score some rewards via the Kickstarter. Kickstarter also allows us to give people the opportunity to back us outside our local area who may not visit the club but want to support the continued rise of pinball.
    We are personally funding the entire operation and we are opening regardless! (we are locked into our lease)
    I am sorry you are disgusted by our efforts to reopen our club and our Kickstarter but thank you for the bump.
    I am also sorry you don't think we are working hard and are taking risks. Considering the amount of money we are personally financing I would consider that a risk. The doors are opening no matter what and immediately assuming we are not working hard or taking risks simply because we allow people help fund our efforts and vision via micro funding is unfortunate.
    We cannot close a few months later, we are legally locked in and will ensure that our membership has a place to play in Fargo.
    (I love Pinside Drama)
    Again thank you for the bump and have a wonderful day.
    Bill
    Fargo Pinball
    P.S. No worries SadSack, best wishes on your KS and I look forward to my T-shirt

    What are these "rewards via Kickstarter" that you reference? I'm a bit slow with some of this new online lingo - so just trying to understand what is it you are after and what you are asking pinsiders to do.

    #18 4 years ago
    Quoted from Whysnow:

    I am not disgusted by your effort to support location pinball an reopen your business; I actually applaud it and am thankful that others are fighting the good fight to bring back pinball on route! I do think it is weak sauce to ask for others to support you in this business venture, esp when you already have 30 games in your collection and this is a business model/ not for charity. If it is not a business and you are putting 100% of all funds back into the venture for the love of pinball then I appologize fro assuming differently. To me it all reads as "please give money so we can buy more cool games, and then charge you for membership and the coin drop to play those new games"
    You may not know but I also love and support location pinball. Myself and a few other collectors have put our games out in public for others to play. We have taken on all risk, loans for games, and hardship along the way, and the only dontaions we ask for is coin drop in the games. If I am off base and people want to donate money for route pinball purchases, then feel free to send it my way, LOL. I would love to buy a new Hobbit machine to put out on route, but I am not about to ask for hobbyists to buy that machine for me. (Maybe that is how it works now and I am just old school in my ideas???)
    Good luck in your venture! After you open I would be happy to stop in and drop quarters (even buy a marked up shirt) to help support if I am ever in Fargo.
    It was a smart idea to also sell 1 pinball machine to make the "supporter" amount jump up! I have seen lots of crowd funding stuff not meet goals and that was a genious way to get the dollar value up quickly and also sell a game!

    Thanks so much for your comment. I am sorry if it came off wrong because we are indeed putting 100% of the funds back into the club. Our model has the dues helping with rent, heat, insurance, licensing, etc. and the coin drop helping to maintain the collection and the club. Basically we have a private place people can join and play a funhouse, monster bash, and a woz le for example in the same evening.

    My brother and I attended the wonderful seminar at expo with Roger Sharpe and David Fix and learned quite a lot. We consider ourselves as something different than the traditional model in that we are looking to maintain a private venue for people to play.

    It is awesome to hear you and other collectors are putting games out in the wild to breathe new life into pinball. We look at the club as the half way point between a private collection and on route.

    Kickstarter actually does not allow for Charity donations as it is one of their rules, but we will be doing charity focused functions after we open our doors.

    We are planning on quarterly tournaments with the 4th quarter tournament going towards a charity (I attended Daniel's Project Pinball seminar and look forward to working with him)

    The Out of Sight was actually jonogo's before I bought it a while back.

    If you do find yourself in Fargo please let me know as you are more than welcome to join me

    FYI: For those who do not know, Whysnow is a pinball supporter here in the upper midwest/upper plains as he has very generously offered to help with pin-transports via the MN WI thread!

    #19 4 years ago

    i feel like if it was open to the public you would have a lot more patrons dropping coins in your games. you seem to be limiting an already small installed user base by not allowing a passersby a chance at the games. Maybe certain nights for the people with memberships only, but every night that seems like a poor business strategy imo, also doesnt help build up the hobby to newbies since they cant play without a membership.

    #20 4 years ago
    Quoted from Methos:

    What are these "rewards via Kickstarter" that you reference? I'm a bit slow with some of this new online lingo - so just trying to understand what is it you are after and what you are asking pinsiders to do.

    Thank you for the comment. Kickstater rewards are essentially thank you gifts for pledging money at a certain level. Easiest comparison is like when PBS does those telethons asking for donations and in exchange they will send you a tote bag or a CD of "sounds of ken burns" or something like that. Typically the donation is more than the value of the reward as it is your show of support for the project.

    In our case our memberships are $45 for the year regardless, so if you join via the Kickstarter you get some added bonuses.

    Pinside is an awesome venue for pinball fans to get the word out so that is why I posted here. If pinsiders want to donate and support us that is awesome, but just getting the word out is also greatly appreciated.

    #21 4 years ago

    Are you opening with a 501(c) tax exemption? Is this a true non profit venture?

    Nice that it sounds like you plan to donate to some charities, but if this is a for-profit business, I think it is insane to ask for (or donate) money with nothing in return.

    #22 4 years ago
    Quoted from InfiniteLives:

    i feel like if it was open to the public you would have a lot more patrons dropping coins in your games. you seem to be limiting an already small installed user base by not allowing a passersby a chance at the games. Maybe certain nights for the people with memberships only, but every night that seems like a poor business strategy imo, also doesnt help build up the hobby to newbies since they cant play without a membership.

    Thanks for the comment. We did look at that model when we bought out the old club with the intentions of reopening. The private aspect of the location gives us an added veil of security in knowing who is coming and going. Insurance for a public arcade versus a private club was another factor. Also, our foot traffic is pretty much non existent at our future location.

    One item of note however is that members can bring as many guests as they want. A member can reserve the club for a private event where the attendees with them of course do not need to be members.

    We think our $45/year membership fee ($20/year after the initial year) is doable for most individuals in our neck of the woods.

    Quoted from Elicash:

    Are you opening with a 501(c) tax exemption? Is this a true non profit venture?
    Nice that it sounds like you plan to donate to some charities, but if this is a for-profit business, I think it is insane to ask for (or donate) money with nothing in return.

    I will definitely check with our accountant and lawyer to see what we can and cannot do as we never considered a 501c as an option.
    Regarding nothing in return, in return for joining the club, you and your guests gain access to the location. (like other clubs where you pay to get in but still may pay for drinks and food). But thank you for your comment as I will look into it.

    #23 4 years ago

    The business model seems reasonable, and I guess Kickstarter is as good a way as any to track down new members. I considered something similar around here, but without the coin drop (games would all be on Free Play). That's only because Georgia has some draconian laws around coin-op licensing. If it didn't, I'd go with your approach.

    #24 4 years ago

    I looked at the kickstarter page. I see that you do in fact get something (membership, t shirts, etc) for your contribution. Makes much more sense to me. I apologize for my ignorance. I quite literally thought you were just asking for money, something for nothing. I will shut up now.

    I do wish you good luck. I am in Fargo about twice a year for work. I will certainly support your efforts when in town!

    #25 4 years ago

    You would have more success if you were asking for money for a new roof on your private club house.

    good luck with the fund raising.

    1 week later
    #26 4 years ago

    Donation and Bump for a Good Group!

    2 weeks later
    #27 4 years ago

    A huge thank you to everyone who has pledged to re-opening the Fargo Pinball Club.

    With 7 days to go our goal is within reach!!!

    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/431857788/pinball-on-the-plains-fund-fargo-pinball

    Thank you so very much to the Pinsiders who have pledged and those who are considering pledging.

    I am thankful for the pinball community and all it has done for me and our club.

    Bill
    Fargo Pinball

    -3
    #28 4 years ago

    Ok. I've been in the Fargo area for 12 years now (originally from Madison Wis). I REALLY believe this is a HUGE scam. These guys bought the original owners games (everything except Twilight Zone & Junk Yard) they paid full/over retail for the games & now come on here & Facebook acting like they are doing us a favor & then asking for a kick starter so we pay for "their games"

    Here's a idea.... put "your" games at a location. Do not charge for a member free or kick starter. If I feel that I want to come & pay to play "your" games I will bring $. If it's not worth it or fun I won't. Simple

    How about putting some food & beverages .

    Just don't make your fun hobby our problem.

    #29 4 years ago

    Wow. I didn't realize these guys were putting a gun to your head.

    #30 4 years ago

    In my opinion $45 a year is cheep to have access to this amount of games. Around here the few location games are not well taken care of. I have contacted the operator from time to time and only the simplest most obvious issues are fixed. The scoop on the kiss has never scored, there have been, or at least were, two balls stuck in genes mouth for at least a month. I happily signed up for a membership, and if Bill can keep the machines up and running I will be dropping lots of coins, or more accurately buying credits on my phone.

    #31 4 years ago

    I hope I am wrong but I'll wager this place won't last more than 2 years.

    #32 4 years ago
    Quoted from pinballuniv:

    I hope I am wrong but I'll wager this place won't last more than 2 years.

    I hope you're wrong too. I've made my donation. I visit Fargo a few times during the year and it will be nice to be able to visit (and play) while I am there.

    #33 4 years ago

    Good luck guys!
    Not sure I believe in the $45 model though. Do you know how many people you need each month to buy memberships in order to stay afloat?
    Your hours of business seem too long too in my opinion given you'll have to pay someone for their time. Who's really likely to show up at 6am to play pinball?
    Why not evenings and weekends only, and keep a day job to help pay the bills at home -at least until business warrants it?
    With those hours, you'd need 4 new customers every single day just to pay someone $10/hour for the 18 hours a day you play to be open, right? Not to mention rent, repairs, hydro, insurance, $ for new pins...
    Also, giving every member the right to bring in others for free will only hurt your bottom line. 2 friends will split on a membership. Only 1 family member will buy. Hell, you might only ever have 1 kid from the local high school buy a membership, and then have everyone else attend for free.
    Why not offer a family rate ($100?) or couples rate ($75?) instead of $45 with free tag-a-longs?
    Just my two cents.
    Either way, best of luck. Running a business can be a tough go with long hours.

    Edit: just read the kick starter page. So members get a key fob and just let themselves in? So nobody will be there to supervise? What if you find people smoking/doing drugs/having sex/starting fights/abusing the machines?
    Wouldn't this be better if you planned evenings and weekends only, and had someone there to sell drinks and snacks?
    Pitchers of beer will help pay the bills. Pizza by the slice helps pay the bills. Potato chips...
    You get the idea.

    -1
    #34 4 years ago

    Exactly what will the funds be used for?

    General funding, for the lease, for a PRIVATE club. Or did I miss something? So a paid membership gets one a key-fob to enter the "club" pay to play the games. Do you have a bill changer to supply quarters or tokens? What sort of staff will be there to fix problems like stuck balls or machine malfunctions?

    Tilt Pinball was an Arcade open to the public, now closed. Sounds like it was not a profitable venture for the previous owners because there was not enough public interest aka players. And now a $45 annual fee will make the difference in profitability? Do you expect walk in traffic to sign up at $45 per person?

    All the arcades I went to never had an annual membership fee or cover charge to get in the door. Except, Cedar Point the amusement park.

    I know the major football universities now sell you a "license" just so you can buy tickets to their football games. An end around play to increase ticket prices. They can do it because the fans, short for fanatics, are willing to pay.

    -1
    #35 4 years ago

    I don't see Mom here buying her kid a membership to play pinball for an added cost per game.

    kickoff.jpg

    #36 4 years ago

    Bump! Only 3 days left!

    I just pledged and am happy to do so. We make it to Fargo a number of times a year. It's great to have a place 'near by' to be able to play pinball in an environment where the family can experience and enjoy more than what my wallet can afford at home.

    Thanks Fargo Pinball! See you soon!

    #37 4 years ago

    I pledged and I live a 1000 miles away, you do get some goodies.

    You complainers act like they are trying to rip people off when they are just getting pinball out there for people to enjoy and have thier own access to some sweet games? I spent less than most mods cost for a game, got a year membership, shirt and a mug. Wish I had a place like this near me. I'll give my membership to one of my old buds that comes to visit me and goes home to Fargo wishing he had a place to play locally.

    #38 4 years ago

    I think there are too many people that don't understand the point of Kickstarter. It should not matter if the project is for profit or not. It's about crowd funding any project because you want to. If you do not want to, move along. In fact many of the highest paid individuals work at not for profit companies.

    The guy has 30 machines, great. That's not even close to getting the doors open. Many people have considered doing similar things out near Chicago but no one is willing to sacrifice their collection and no one is willing to set up and operate the club. I give the op credit for taking on a big undertaking. Of course it would need to be for profit, the guy needs to keep the doors open and be paid for his time, wear/tear on his games, as well as something to pay the frickin bills.

    Even though the pinball operation the op wants to open is for profit, it still takes plenty of time, money and dedication to make the place work. It seems like in this instance he just doesn't have enough money to make it work. You either want to help him out and see pinball grow a bit or you don't. Why jump on his thread and bash him for asking for help bringing pinball to a community that doesn't or wouldn't have it?

    That seems pretty disgusting IMHO.

    The only thing that seems like people are upset about is that the guy has 30 games, at this point it comes off as a jealousy thing.

    I'm starting to feel like the dude dealing with Walter saying "what does this have to do with nam?" Every time someone brings up jpop or predictor. Those two issues have nothing to do with this, stop bringing them up.

    #39 4 years ago
    Quoted from bob_e:

    I don't see Mom here buying her kid a membership to play pinball for an added cost per game.

    kickoff.jpg

    What I see is a grown person acting like a child because somebody is trying to do something good for the world. What a sad picture it is.

    #40 4 years ago

    There is just something about some pinsiders that makes them feel like they need to bash everyone here who is not in their exact demographic. I swear that if you have any contrary opinions, you are supposed to go sit in the corner and be quiet because some of the guys who think pinside is their gameroom think they can shut you up like their wives do to them.

    I experienced a terrible pile-on when I threw my kickstarter link out on this board. And it was because I was so mean and nasty when I told the victims of the two biggest pinside scammers to go for their money about 3 months too early. Then I had a big argument with the two guys who told everyone to just wait a little longer and good things would happen. That really made people dislike me. I guess being realistic is the same as being nasty when you are trying to have a rational conversation with pie-in-the-sky dreamers that are in total denial of the reality around them. So I took a big admonishment from a few guys and you know what? It didn't bother me a bit. My kickstarter is likely to fail, but this one is likely to succeed. More power to you Fargo pinheads that are going to enjoy the club. Crowdfunding is a valid way to gin up capital for projects that otherwise may prove too risky. In my case, I just wanted to try it out and I learned that it's really not for me. I'll be happy for the OP when my pledge goes through. They deserve it. Anyone who doesn't like crowdfunding doesn't have to participate and anyone who is willing to crowdfund a dream is completely entitled to take the risk.. but when things go south, don't blame the messenger over your suspended disbelief.

    What is the old saying about shaking the dust off? Oh, yeah, let's play some pinball in Fargo!

    #41 4 years ago

    Just was wondering if you guys asked a bowling alley like West Acres if they'd do some type of deal hosting your games? I'm pretty sure the rent would be much less expensive & a plus would be there food & booze.

    #42 4 years ago
    Quoted from pinballuniv:

    Just was wondering if you guys asked a bowling alley like West Acres if they'd do some type of deal hosting your games? I'm pretty sure the rent would be much less expensive & a plus would be there food & booze.

    But the bowling alley won't be open at 6 AM.

    #43 4 years ago

    Hosting games at a bowling alley is what is known as a route. A semi-private club with machines in relatively good condition is worth a lot more than a split of a coin drop. I don't know the laws in ND, but they could sell mixers and let people byob. They could make money that way. But the idea of being able to open up your little arcade clubhouse on a whim is very inviting.

    #44 4 years ago
    Quoted from pinballkim:

    In my opinion $45 a year is cheep to have access to this amount of games. Around here the few location games are not well taken care of. I have contacted the operator from time to time and only the simplest most obvious issues are fixed. The scoop on the kiss has never scored, there have been, or at least were, two balls stuck in genes mouth for at least a month. I happily signed up for a membership, and if Bill can keep the machines up and running I will be dropping lots of coins, or more accurately buying credits on my phone.

    I'm looking forward to Fargo Pinball.

    Wish the guys who have KISS at the Bismark will swap it for The Walking Dead at O'learys. It would be a way better fit.

    #45 4 years ago
    Quoted from scampcamp:

    I'm looking forward to Fargo Pinball.
    Wish the guys who have KISS at the Bismark will swap it for The Walking Dead at O'learys. It would be a way better fit.

    Well there are some zombies at the biz, that is for sure.

    Left ramp ever get fixed on walking dead? Haven't been over there for awhile. Did he ever update the code on TWD?

    #46 4 years ago

    Evening Everyone!

    First off, thank you for all the bumps! Regardless if you do or don't support what we are doing, any comment bumps us to the top of the forum and we have seen an uptick in Kickstater pledges from pinside over the last 5 days.

    I will try to cover some of the things that have been discussed.

    Quoted from pinballuniv:

    Ok. I've been in the Fargo area for 12 years now (originally from Madison Wis). I REALLY believe this is a HUGE scam. These guys bought the original owners games (everything except Twilight Zone & Junk Yard) they paid full/over retail for the games & now come on here & Facebook acting like they are doing us a favor & then asking for a kick starter so we pay for "their games"
    Here's a idea.... put "your" games at a location. Do not charge for a member free or kick starter. If I feel that I want to come & pay to play "your" games I will bring $. If it's not worth it or fun I won't. Simple
    How about putting some food & beverages .
    Just don't make your fun hobby our problem.

    We are not out to scam anyone and I know we have sadly seen scams come and go in the pinball community (i.e. preorder scams and such) so it is understandable that people have their reservations.

    We respect opinions good or bad and will gladly address topics as any good venture should.

    Regarding what we paid, to be frank, pinball prices are governed by availability and Fargo does not have a lot of availability. We paid what we felt was a very fair price for the machines we got and again thank Scotty for selling the machines to us so we could keep them in Fargo. I imagine the pricing information must have come from someone Scotty talked with.

    The Kickstarter has been awesome and it is a great tool for marketing and allowing people who appreciate our vision to show their support inside and outside the Fargo metro. I believe Kickstarter is a great marketing tool and should be there to assist a new venture. That being said, Kickstarter may not be a good idea if your venture is dependent on the site to "make it or break it". In our case, we are locked in our lease and will be opening our doors regardless of the outcome of the Kickstarter campaign (although we are less than $500 from our goal!!!)

    Our goal is to keep pinball relevant here in Fargo. The next closest place to play is a three and a half hour drive to the Twin Cities . However if you do make a trip to the Twin Cities, visiting with Lloyd at SS Billiards (LTG) is an absolute must!

    My personal belief is that for pinball to survive we absolutely have to bring in new players to appreciate the game. I loved having machines in my basement but that was not very accessible to everyone who wanted to play.

    The Fargo Pinball Club is attempting to combine the feel and variety of a private basement/collection with the accessibility of machines out in the wild. The location is private to members, but members can bring as many friends as they want. Provided a member can pass a background check (similar to something an employer would do) you are more than welcome to join.

    The kicker is that each member is responsible for their guests and with the security cameras and key fob access, we know who is coming in, when they come in, and can see who they are bringing in with them. So if someone decided to have sex in the club (as mentioned in a previous post) they are going to be on camera and we will know who they are or who they arrived with.

    We could put machines on location but say someone had a bad day and decided to tip our Monster Bash over. Even with a clear image on a camera, we would have no idea who that person was or how to track them down.

    I did explore the beer and food idea but after investigating the licenses, regulations, and requirements (especially with food prep) we felt the focus should remain on the machines. (it is important to note however that we do maintain an operators license with the state). That being said however, if people wanted to pick up something for dinner on the way to the club, we do not have a problem with that (no alcohol however due to insurance concerns). One of the things I wanted to do at the last location but could not was to bring in a snack and soda. Well now I am able to.

    Quoted from bob_e:

    Exactly what will the funds be used for?
    General funding, for the lease, for a PRIVATE club. Or did I miss something? So a paid membership gets one a key-fob to enter the "club" pay to play the games. Do you have a bill changer to supply quarters or tokens? What sort of staff will be there to fix problems like stuck balls or machine malfunctions?
    Tilt Pinball was an Arcade open to the public, now closed. Sounds like it was not a profitable venture for the previous owners because there was not enough public interest aka players. And now a $45 annual fee will make the difference in profitability? Do you expect walk in traffic to sign up at $45 per person?
    All the arcades I went to never had an annual membership fee or cover charge to get in the door. Except, Cedar Point the amusement park.
    I know the major football universities now sell you a "license" just so you can buy tickets to their football games. An end around play to increase ticket prices. They can do it because the fans, short for fanatics, are willing to pay.

    The funds will be used for the direct operating expenses of the club. We absolutely have a change machine but will also have PayRange on each machine (check out this great video from East Side Pinball in the Twin Cities and their implementation of PayRange.

    ).

    Tilt Pinball in Fargo (later renamed Fargo Pinball) was not open to the public. They had public open house hours every now and then, but it was a private membership club with pay to play machines as well. It was profitable but Scotty wanted to spend less time working on the club and more time at the lake.

    Quoted from bob_e:

    I don't see Mom here buying her kid a membership to play pinball for an added cost per game.

    kickoff.jpg

    That is my picture of my son on the last day Fargo Pinball was open downtown, but unfortunately all the machines had been moved out prior to the last day. My son was crushed. It was truly a sad day in Fargo.

    Again, thank you all for the bumps and support. We have nearly hit our Kickstarter goal with two days left to go. We are very proud to say Fargo Pinball will officially open to it's doors to our members on December 19th.

    I again appreciate all the support and wish you all a wonderful evening.

    Bill
    Fargo Pinball

    -3
    #47 4 years ago

    Alright Bill, now you've just lost any of my support that I had for anything to do with you or the pinball place. I should have listened to my 1st instinct when I met you & your brother downtown when you were talking to Scotty (the original Tilt-Fargo Pinball owner. You have the same attitude as you do here basically saying "f you to whoever disagrees with me because I'm getting bumps! LOL

    My friends, family & myself will not be attending this place.

    Don't you think you would be able to put in the last $500 if you can afford 30 games?

    #48 4 years ago
    Quoted from pinballuniv:

    Alright Bill, now you've just lost any of my support that I had for anything to do with you or the pinball place. I should have listened to my 1st instinct when I met you & your brother downtown when you were talking to Scotty (the original Tilt-Fargo Pinball owner. You have the same attitude as you do here basically saying "f you to whoever disagrees with me because I'm getting bumps! LOL
    My friends, family & myself will not be attending this place.
    Don't you think you would be able to put in the last $500 if you can afford 30 games?

    No worries. I respect everyone's right to express their opinions regardless if I agree with them or not. I apologize as I do not remember meeting downtown.

    I saw your other post about Monster Bash mods and if we can be of any help, please do not hesitate to let me know.

    Best wishes to you and your family this Holiday season.

    Bill
    Fargo Pinball

    #49 4 years ago

    Fully funded! Congratulations, thank you, and good luck to Bill!

    #50 4 years ago
    Quoted from pinballuniv:

    Alright Bill, now you've just lost any of my support that I had for anything to do with you or the pinball place. I should have listened to my 1st instinct when I met you & your brother downtown when you were talking to Scotty (the original Tilt-Fargo Pinball owner. You have the same attitude as you do here basically saying "f you to whoever disagrees with me because I'm getting bumps! LOL
    My friends, family & myself will not be attending this place.
    Don't you think you would be able to put in the last $500 if you can afford 30 games?

    Did you read past his first paragraph?

    I still can't believe people are complaining about having their own access to some great games?

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