Smoky Mountain Pinball Museum’s

Dolly Parton pinball has all the bells and whistles.

Dolly Parton pinball has all the bells and whistles.


Smoky Mountain Pinball Museum’s. Gatlinburg’s Pinball Museum offers a step back in time for gamers. The metallic sound of quarters dropping into a metal slot; high-pitched electronic beeping; clanging bells; flashing lights and the flapping sound of metal flippers – rescuing stainless steel balls in the nick of time transport gamers to another time and place in the new Gatlinburg Pinball Museum.

This is definitely not your usual museum with hushed voices and static exhibits, rather it is a place where adults can re-live those rocking teen memories through vintage video games and pinball machines and, perhaps, instill a love for the same games in their children.

Boasting the largest collection of pinball and retro games in the Smokies, the new Pinball Museum showcases modern limited edition games as well as vintage ones – dating back to the early 60s.

Classic pinballs include Attack from Mars; Lord of the Rings; The Addams Family Gold Edition; Metallica, Dialed in; Medieval Madness; the 1965 classic Gottlieb Sky-Line and many others.

Early pinball machines, which became coin-operated and electrified in the 1930s, often paid off in small coins and were frequently considered gambling. And, as a consequence, were banned in many cities, including New York which outlawed them from 1948 – 1976. Nowadays the machine’s only rewards include, in some cases, a free game.

The museum is located off the Parkway (just past the Space Needle) at 205 Historic Nature Trail in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Admission is $15 for adults and $12 for children age 10 and under.

Hours are Monday – Thursday, 2 p.m. -9 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. -11 p.m. and Friday and Sunday, 12 p.m. -10 p.m.

The game is on for all you Pinball Wizards!

Check out additional pinball museums in Asheville and Hendersonville, North Carolina.  Take a short drive from the Smokies to the arty community of Asheville,North Carolina, located high in the Blue Ridge Mountains, and try your luck at the Asheville Pinball Museum. The museum is located just across from the historic Grove Arcade in downtown Asheville. The 80-plus machines are clustered era by era. Enjoy a turn on a 1975 Elton John Captain Fantastic; a 1975 Cherry Bell or a wide-bodied, double-flippered version of the 1979 Space Invaders. A smaller back room is home to old-school video games that include Ms. Pacman and Asteroids. In an attempt to satisfy every age gamer, the museum also houses some Nintendo and Sega Genesis.

Admission to the museum is free if all you just want to do is look, and a $15 ticket allows you to play for hours on the venues 75 + vintage to modern machines..

Asheville Pinball Museum is located at 1 Battle Square, #1b, Asheville, North Carolina.

Museum hours are Wednesday – Friday, 2 p.m. -9 p.m.; Saturday, noon -9 p.m. and Sunday and Monday, 1 p.m. -6 p.m.

Hendersonville’s Appalachian Pinball Museum offers nostalgic games

Twenty-six vintage games await visitors to the Appalachian Pinball Museum in Hendersonville, North Carolina. Located on the main drag in downtown, the venue offers such classics as an original 1979 KISS game, a vintage Elton John Captain Fantastic and two-dozen others. For those that fancy later editions, check out the pinball version of Game of Thrones, an epic fantasy series that has gained cult status, along with arcade versions of Ms.  Pacman, Tekken 3 and The Empire Strikes Back.

Again there is no need to bring a sack of quarters; a $10 fee buys hours of play. Appalachian Pinball Museum is located at 538 North Main Street in Hendersonville. It is open Wednesday – Friday, 2 p.m. -9 p.m.; Saturday, noon -9 p.m., and 1 p.m. -6 p.m. on Sunday and Monday.

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