(Topic ID: 322454)

Official Pintastic New England 2023 show and hotel discussion

By dmarston

1 year ago


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  • Latest reply 4 months ago by dannunz
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    There are 316 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 7.
    12
    #1 1 year ago

    The announcement has rolled out. The next edition of Pintastic New England will be September 7-10, 2023! We signed a 2-year deal; more on that below.

    The new location: Best Western Royal Plaza Hotel (not the Trade Center)
    181 Boston Post Road West (US Route 20), Marlborough, MA, USA
    Less than a mile West of Exit 63B off I-495

    We studied several candidate venues and determined that this was the best choice. It is similar in size to the old Sturbridge location, but is divided into more function rooms. All the function rooms are in one area of the hotel, next to the restaurant and bar areas. We are thinking creatively about the flexibility afforded by the new layout.

    Please use this thread to discuss the features of the show, the facility, and the City of Marlborough. Buy-sell discussion should be elsewhere, keeping in mind that Pintastic provides official support on our website for game-bringers who put their games up for sale at the show.

    The September dates are a 1-time thing, dictated by availability of the venue. In 2024, our dates will be April 11-14.
    .................David Marston

    #3 1 year ago

    New venue. Nice time of year to visit.

    #4 1 year ago

    My questions is where is the nearest karaoke spot?

    #5 1 year ago

    Nice, that’s an easier drive for me. Having apex near by will also make it a much easier sell to the family. I’m assuming this hotel’s AC works, so all things are lookin up for pintastic ‘23!

    #6 1 year ago

    Only adds about 10-20 minutes to my drive so I’m good. Just happy that it’s still on. Not worried about the hotel, I used to sleep next to torpedoes.

    #7 1 year ago
    Quoted from GreenMachine19:

    Only adds about 10-20 minutes to my drive so I’m good. Just happy that it’s still on. Not worried about the hotel, I used to sleep next to torpedoes.

    Yeah, but I bet the torpedoes were clean.

    #8 1 year ago

    Kudos to the show organizers for making the tough decision to change venues. This addresses the following...

    1) It keeps it in the same general area so drives are relatively the same.
    2) It addresses the hotel situation which was the biggest point of contention.
    3) It also moves it from a peak summer weekend which was a big gripe from the summer weekend vacationers.

    If there's other perks, it's just icing on the cake. Great job and looking forward to attending once again!

    #9 1 year ago

    The April dates are way too close to Pinfest. It'll be a "choose one or the other" situation for many of us.

    #10 1 year ago
    Quoted from jrpinball:

    The April dates are way too close to Pinfest. It'll be a "choose one or the other" situation for many of us.

    Pintastic was one month and a half after Allantown for 7 years. Now we will be one month before Allantown. What is the huge difference?

    #11 1 year ago

    Awesome news!

    #12 1 year ago

    Congrats on the new venue! Looking forward to the new show. Interested to see what kind of fun things the team does with the function rooms. You could theme them by era, maybe have a rarities room with low-production run games, or showcase a certain designer.

    -Doug

    #14 1 year ago

    I think with all of the negative comments, it's important we all (including dannunz) remember that most people are really, really liking Pintastic despite the issues. If the hotel is just 10% better than The Host Hotel, it will be fantastic. It can't be perfect, but it's pretty freaking great!

    #15 1 year ago
    Quoted from dannunz:

    Pintastic was one month and a half after Allantown for 7 years. Now we will be one month before Allantown. What is the huge difference?

    If Pinfest is held the usual first weekend in May, then it's only three weeks after Pintastic. That's half of a month and a half. Big difference. I know many of us will choose one or the other.

    #16 1 year ago
    Quoted from jrpinball:

    If Pinfest is held the usual first weekend in May, then it's only three weeks after Pintastic. That's half of a month and a half. Big difference. I know many of us will choose one or the other.

    That’s 2 awesome shows in one month! Nothing wrong with that IMO.

    #17 1 year ago
    Quoted from arcyallen:

    I think with all of the negative comments, it's important we all (including dannunz) remember that most people are really, really liking Pintastic despite the issues. If the hotel is just 10% better than The Host Hotel, it will be fantastic. It can't be perfect, but it's pretty freaking great!

    The BW is a great improvement from Sturbridge. But not to the point that it would take away from the party atmosphere we all have grown to love. That was one of the most difficult parts about picking a new venue.

    #18 1 year ago
    Quoted from dannunz:

    That’s 2 awesome shows in one month! Nothing wrong with that IMO.

    Maybe just as an attendee. It takes time to recover and prep games between shows, though.

    #19 1 year ago

    Nice. Well done. This is also close enough to me now I’ll consider bringing a game or two.

    There is a lot to do in that area as well.

    #20 1 year ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    Maybe just as an attendee. It takes time to recover and prep games between shows, though.

    Exactly that’s why we want to see how being before Allantown effects us over all.

    #21 1 year ago

    The hotel staff is going through the mechanics of setting up the special code for our block of hotel rooms. I think this will work through Best Western's national reservation system when all is done. They only allow bookings with an 11-month lead time, and I hear that it's rounded off to the nearest month. Tracking "how much business we bring in" is very important to the financial arrangements for Pintastic to put on a show like this, and we ask that our supporters to use the special code.

    We may also be trying to convince the City of Marlborough that we make a positive impact on the local economy.
    .................David Marston

    #22 1 year ago
    Quoted from dmarston:

    We may also be trying to convince the City of Marlborough that we make a positive impact on the local economy.
    .................David Marston

    Pot, beer, and pizza sales will be up 500%!

    Exciting news. My son and I will be there. We’ve been to every Pintastic so far.

    #23 1 year ago
    Quoted from jackd104:

    Pot, beer, and pizza sales will be up 500%!
    Exciting news. My son and I will be there. We’ve been to every Pintastic so far.

    Well you are in luck! Plenty of all of those around here!

    #24 1 year ago

    Interested in seeing how this plays out. Time line being different puts a different dynamic into play. Sept 2023 is right after school starts, so may interfere with attending. At least kids won't be able to attend, possibly wife as well. That might rule it out for me. We enjoyed the family aspect, despite the accommodations.
    Only time will tell for us

    #25 1 year ago

    Great news, already blocked the dates, thanks guys for the hard work and effort to get this to happen. Excited to see the new layout.

    10
    #26 1 year ago
    Quoted from Dwboca:

    Interested in seeing how this plays out. Time line being different puts a different dynamic into play. Sept 2023 is right after school starts, so may interfere with attending. At least kids won't be able to attend, possibly wife as well. That might rule it out for me. We enjoyed the family aspect, despite the accommodations.
    Only time will tell for us

    I understand the summer shows made it easier for some families to attend. But it also made it more difficult for many people to attend due to being on vacation. So we can’t win either way. But don’t forget you only miss half day on Thursday and half day on Friday. But can still attend Friday afternoon, evening. All day Saturday and Sunday till 2pm

    Quoted from MG7322:

    Great news, already blocked the dates, thanks guys for the hard work and effort to get this to happen. Excited to see the new layout.

    Thank you, moving to a new venue was not taken lightly. We took our time and walked multiple hotels. Power was a big issue at most hotels. Best Western corporate are pinball fans. They agreed to make a substantial investment in Pintastic. They absorbed the $10,000 plus cost to buy all new distribution cables and boxes to get us the power we need we’re we need it. Those type of things really make me feel like they want to take Pintastic into it’s next chapter.

    #27 1 year ago

    I will assume if crack pipes have been found in the beds, drinking booze on the property shouldn't be a problem... Sounds good to me. Will check out the September show.

    #28 1 year ago

    Congrats. Location needed an upgrade. Can’t satisfy everyone.

    #29 1 year ago
    Quoted from radial_head:

    My questions is where is the nearest karaoke spot?

    I'll have to look into that. I have a friend who does karaoke and I noticed John Borg singing on Facebook. So I jokingly asked Borg at Expo if he wanted to do karaoke and he agreed. I was surprised he showed up along with a few other friends. Luckily there was a bar nearby that did karaoke on Friday nights instead of say Tuesday nights. This year it was messed up due to work schedules, flight delays, etc. However still a lot of people hung out at the bar and it was a lot of fun. There is a place 9min away from the new venue called "Funky Murphys" and they do it but I'll have to research it. That being said the new hotel has a large bar and it will be staffed unlike the last place. So my theory is that it's probably better to move karaoke to the hotel itself especially to prevent DUI or to just enjoy yourself more as you're already at the hotel. Again I'll have to look into it because there is a party for game bringers and vendors but it might not be a bad idea to merge the 2 or make it more elaborate. Throw in pinball trivia or something you know? Especially for people who don't want to sing but want to do a group activity.

    This hotel presents a wealth of new things we can try or have always wanted to do but were limited by the hotel itself. People may complain about the travel but it's worth it and the hotel is rather good. Get excited for next year.

    -Derek Karamanian
    A/V Team Leader of Pintastic Pinball & Game Room Expo

    #30 1 year ago
    Quoted from dannunz:I understand the summer shows made it easier for some families to attend. But it also made it more difficult for many people to attend due to being on vacation. So we can’t win either way. But don’t forget you only miss half day on Thursday and half day on Friday. But can still attend Friday afternoon, evening. All day Saturday and Sunday till 2pm

    That doesn't necessarily exclude us from coming but conversations will need to be had

    #31 1 year ago

    Just to be clear. I'm happy to host a karaoke party on the first night at the hotel. I have everything we'd need.

    #32 1 year ago
    Quoted from hool10:

    There is a place 9min away from the new venue called "Funky Murphys"

    There's also a place called Lavender in Sudbury that looks to have some serious karaoke.

    1 month later
    #33 1 year ago

    The move had to be made, The show could conflict with York which is a month afterwards, that pick one or the other scenario for Vendors and folks coming with loaded up vehicles. The Host Hellhole needed to be dumped, nobody wants mold, bugs, and non-working HVAC. I suspect you will get fewer attendees from the NYC area now, but more from Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire folks will replace them. Good luck with your show and I hope you have great success.

    1 month later
    #34 1 year ago

    Any pictures of the locations in the hotel where the vender room, freeplay, and extra ball lounge will be?

    Is there working and open restaurant for our event inside the hotel? Last time getting something to eat was challenging.

    Any cool nightlife in the area we should know about?

    #35 1 year ago

    We took a bunch of pictures for planning purposes, which might be a little dull. Our plan is to have the main Free Play Room and the Vendor Hall together in the
    main ballroom (Eastern end of the property), and use the divider wall to close the vendor zone at night. The Extra Ball Lounge will be closer to this room than it was at the old venue.
    .................David Marston

    #36 1 year ago
    Quoted from digitaldocc:

    Any pictures of the locations in the hotel where the vender room, freeplay, and extra ball lounge will be?
    Is there working and open restaurant for our event inside the hotel? Last time getting something to eat was challenging.
    Any cool nightlife in the area we should know about?

    Here is the lay out of Pintastic 2023. Yes we will have a full service bar and grill restaurant directly in the middle of the hotel. We also have a dedicated breakfast buffet restaurant that will be included with every nights stay at the hotel. After party will be in the breakfast restaurant as well.

    24hr EBL and all club rooms will be in the west wing and open very late if not all night. The band will be set up in the court yard directly across from the restaurant/bar.

    As Dave mentioned vendor hall and free play will be in one big room. Our plan is to have the divider wall close off the vendor hall at 9pm. But we will leave the newer games from vendors on the free play side and available to play till 2am.

    Tons of great restaurants in the area and the Apex center up the street. Go cart racing, bowling, rope course, bumper cars, laser tag, mini gulf and tons more.

    7432EEE2-8B0D-4EB7-91C7-4180ACE589A7 (resized).jpeg7432EEE2-8B0D-4EB7-91C7-4180ACE589A7 (resized).jpeg
    #37 1 year ago

    just booked my room!!! ready to have a great time!!!

    #38 1 year ago
    Quoted from dannunz:

    Here is the lay out of Pintastic 2023. Yes we will have a full service bar and grill restaurant directly in the middle of the hotel. We also have a dedicated breakfast buffet restaurant that will be included with every nights stay at the hotel. After party will be in the breakfast restaurant as well.
    24hr EBL and all club rooms will be in the west wing and open very late if not all night. The band will be set up in the court yard directly across from the restaurant/bar.
    As Dave mentioned vendor hall and free play will be in one big room. Our plan is to have the divider wall close off the vendor hall at 9pm. But we will leave the newer games from vendors on the free play side and available to play till 2am.
    Tons of great restaurants in the area and the Apex center up the street. Go cart racing, bowling, rope course, bumper cars, laser tag, mini gulf and tons more. [quoted image]

    You certainly did some great planning. Nice work man.

    #39 1 year ago
    Quoted from digitaldocc:

    You certainly did some great planning. Nice work man.

    I am only a small part of all this. My team of 15 staff members make me look good. It takes a village lol

    #40 1 year ago
    Quoted from digitaldocc:

    You certainly did some great planning. Nice work man.

    Thank you. Of course, the plans are not all completed, and we are prepared to refine what we've done so far. Soon it will be time for the next part of our "village", the game-bringers, to make their plans and tell us what games they will bring, which in turn will affect our plans.
    .................David Marston

    #41 1 year ago

    Hi,

    This looks awesome! I've never been to a pinball show before, so a few questions.

    Is there a benefit to being there Thursday/Friday vs the weekend?
    When do sales happen? Throughout the show? I'm assuming you can't take the game until the end of the show?
    I live about an hour away - is it worth it to get a hotel for 1 night? Do people play late into the night?
    I'm assuming it's family friendly? I have a 12 year old...

    Thanks!

    #42 1 year ago
    Quoted from ggg71:

    Hi,
    This looks awesome! I've never been to a pinball show before, so a few questions.
    Is there a benefit to being there Thursday/Friday vs the weekend?
    All 4 days are packed with different stuff to do.
    When do sales happen? Throughout the show? Yes

    I'm assuming you can't take the game until the end of the show? We try to get people to leave games to the end. There are many benefits to game bringers for leaving games till the end of the show.

    I live about an hour away - is it worth it to get a hotel for 1 night? Yes

    Do people play late into the night? Yes 24hr a day for 4 days. Pintastic is the only show that does this as far as I know.

    I'm assuming it's family friendly? I have a 12 year old... yes very family friendly
    Thanks!

    #43 1 year ago
    Quoted from ggg71:

    I've never been to a pinball show before, so a few questions.

    [1]Is there a benefit to being there Thursday/Friday vs the weekend?
    [2]When do sales happen? Throughout the show?
    [3]I'm assuming you can't take the game until the end of the show?
    [4]I live about an hour away - is it worth it to get a hotel for 1 night?
    [5]Do people play late into the night?
    [6]I'm assuming it's family friendly?

    Some of the questions may be answered on the pintasticnewengland.com website.
    1. It's less crowded on Thursday night and Friday during the day. Games come and go during the show, so attending every day gives you the best chance to see and play every game. Sunday is a wind-down day, with no vendors or seminars. As we get closer to showtime, you will see announcements about different tournaments on each of the days.

    2. Yes! Pintastic New England does more than any other show to help game-bringers sell their games (if they wish to). The vendors have games to sell on Friday and Saturday.

    3. Actually, there are several scenarios for game removal, and the seller has some ability to negotiate about this with the buyer. We certainly prefer that games stay at the show as long as possible, and deliberately disabling a game is not allowed. We have an early-removal fee to discourage taking a game out of Free Play during prime playing hours Thursday-Saturday. The fee is an incentive to keep the game on the floor, playable, until the designated time in the evening. Games bought from vendors in the vendor hall can be removed whenever the vendor is ready to have it removed. Short answer: you can usually take home your newly-bought game on the evening of the day you bought it.

    4. Pintastic benefits when people take a hotel room at the show hotel. (We couldn't afford to just straight-out rent all the function rooms.) Some people who live nearby take a hotel room to support the show, feel freer about drinking, stay up later to play more, etc.

    5. Yes. We have multi-day experience packages that let you play all night. At past shows, there have been tournaments in the Club Room that start at midnight.

    6. Being family-friendly is the goal. We have most of the kid-appeal stuff happening on Saturday afternoon.

    The upcoming show will be our first in Marlborough. Past experience has shown that you need to decide about hotel rooms in advance, but that was based on a facility having fewer rooms. People who live nearby should monitor this thread, and sign up for email updates if you are so inclined, to stay informed about how fast the venue is filling up.
    .................David Marston

    #44 1 year ago
    Quoted from ggg71:

    Hi,
    This looks awesome! I've never been to a pinball show before, so a few questions.
    Is there a benefit to being there Thursday/Friday vs the weekend?
    When do sales happen? Throughout the show? I'm assuming you can't take the game until the end of the show?
    I live about an hour away - is it worth it to get a hotel for 1 night? Do people play late into the night?
    I'm assuming it's family friendly? I have a 12 year old...
    Thanks!

    I’ve been to every Pintastic with my son. He is 12 now. It’s totally family friendly. People walk around drinking but never seen anyone act out of line. I think Friday is the best day because most all the games are set up and it’s less crowded. I recommending getting a room for at least 1 night. I prefer two nights (Friday/Sat). The room is great to have as a quiet oasis when you need a break. I find my son needs downtime. We go out and play in spurts and chill in the room between. And when you stay the night you can have a couple drinks without worry. Go to the vendor hall in the a.m. to play the newest games, tends to be less crowded. At crowded times long lines form to play the new releases there. Come Sunday we usually just have a slow morning and pack up and leave without going back to the games. A lot of people start taking them down by Sunday. After a full Friday and Saturday we are pinballed out anyhow. Have fun!

    4 weeks later
    #45 1 year ago

    Sales of the top-of-the-line "Limited Edition" pass for Pintastic 2023 are now open. The LE pass includes more hours and more swag than any otherlevel of admission.
    https://pintasticnewengland.com/passes/
    Once they sell out, they're gone!
    .................David Marston

    #46 1 year ago
    Quoted from dmarston:

    Sales of the top-of-the-line "Limited Edition" pass for Pintastic 2023 are now open. The LE pass includes more hours and more swag than any otherlevel of admission.
    https://pintasticnewengland.com/passes/
    Once they sell out, they're gone!
    .................David Marston

    Ever consider other kinds of passes for the extra ball lounge? I can’t afford the premium and I’m not a night owl so going after 8:00 doesn’t appeal. I know it’s supposed to be exclusive but some option for daytime play other than a premium pass would be welcome. Even if it’s like for 2 hour blocks and you could limit the number. Thanks for all you and the organizers do, great show over the years.

    #47 1 year ago
    Quoted from jackd104:

    Ever consider other kinds of passes for the extra ball lounge? I can’t afford the premium and I’m not a night owl so going after 8:00 doesn’t appeal. I know it’s supposed to be exclusive but some option for daytime play other than a premium pass would be welcome. Even if it’s like for 2 hour blocks and you could limit the number. Thanks for all you and the organizers do, great show over the years.

    Part of the idea is to limit the number of people with access. It’s intentional as a perk of the upper level passes. The higher expense passes get perks, and that partiality subsidizes the expense of the show, and can keep day passes cheaper. If they start to give that away cheaper it will impact the whole cost structure of the show, and basically becomes the same as the free play room.

    #48 1 year ago
    Quoted from jackd104:

    Ever consider other kinds of passes for the extra ball lounge? I can’t afford the premium and I’m not a night owl so going after 8:00 doesn’t appeal. I know it’s supposed to be exclusive but some option for daytime play other than a premium pass would be welcome. Even if it’s like for 2 hour blocks and you could limit the number. Thanks for all you and the organizers do, great show over the years.

    The

    Quoted from DaveH:

    Part of the idea is to limit the number of people with access. It’s intentional as a perk of the upper level passes. The higher expense passes get perks, and that partiality subsidizes the expense of the show, and can keep day passes cheaper. If they start to give that away cheaper it will impact the whole cost structure of the show, and basically becomes the same as the free play room.

    This is very true. LE ticket packages go on sale first, are the most expensive, and give you the most access. These things are done for a reason which Dave has pointed out a few key ones. One way to gain access to the EBL during the day is by volunteering your time to the show. Volunteers get tons of cool benefits and access. Best part is it only cost you your time.

    #49 1 year ago

    I'd like to bring a game or two. Is there a way to have the game placed in the ebl?

    #50 1 year ago

    There could be a justification for placing a game in the EBL, but it's hard to think of what it would be. If you want to bring a rare game, we want to have it generally available so that we can promote the opportunity to see all the rare games. Also keep in mind that we will have a special showcase area for homebrew games at the new Marlborough venue. But it doesn't hurt to send a private email where you "make your case" for why your game deserves EBL placement.
    .................David Marston

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