Southern Pinball Festival
Here’s why we love pinball: You don’t have to be a pinball wizard to appreciate a decrepit, finicky old pinball machine with a dusty lightbox and a sticky flipper. There are no cheats to look up online to help you get ahead in the game. You don’t need to actually be good at pinball to enjoy it. In fact, a good pinball game is kind of like interacting with your own little Rube Goldberg machine – every interaction that little metal ball has with any other object in the playing field causes the game to erupt in a flurry of unpredictable lights, buzzers and bells that announce that you’ve received another ball, another point, another chance to win big. Kind of like slot machines, only cheaper and without the rank stench of desperation. Anyway, if you’re into pinball, you’ll want to stop by the Southern Pinball Festival this weekend: catch a pinball tournament (or play in one – anyone is welcome and you don’t need to be a pro to play), check out the vendors or admire the modern and vintage pinball machines on display. If you’ve got some cash burning a hole in your pocket, buy a pinball machine of your own to take home. Then invite us over so we can play, too. We’ll leave the rank stench of desperation at the door. Promise. – Erin Sullivan (3 p.m.-midnight Friday, 10 a.m.-midnight Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday at Maitland Civic Center, 641 S. Maitland Ave., Maitland; $15; southernpinballfestival.com)
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