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16 Reasons Why Penny Arcades Are The Greatest

Walk into Spring Lake Arcade with $2, and you can have fun for hours. Tucked away in the back woods of Burrillville, RI, this hidden gem has been offering penny games since 1931. We stopped by on our MINI NOT NORMAL Road Trip with a few bucks, and had a hard time leaving.

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If you ever visited Spring Lake beach as a child, you're going to see several of the same arcade games you played still there today. Spring Lake Arcade began operating in the early '30s with a single Walking Charlie amusement game. One summer, the owner and operator added a classic arcade game for children to play when the Walking Charley broke down. Children began to play the arcade game more than the Walking Charlie, and the rest is history.

5. Peppy the Musical Clown.

This dancing puppet from the mid '50s introduced young children to the playful world of arcade games (before Stephen King came along and made clowns terrifying).

8. Pre-Pinball.

Silver Cup is a little like Plinko. Your score is tallied at the bottom into categories. At the end of the game (seven balls for five cents), the player has to manually add up their final score.

11. Antique games rely on electromechanics.

While Spring Lake Arcade does have its fair share of modern digital games, the antique classics operate on brilliantly constructed mechanical actions. This is a look under the hood of Sky Fighter.

13. Goalee.

This air hockey/pong predecessor from 1948 is one of the first games to ever enable users to "play against the computer." That's right, in one-player mode, the opposing goalee spins randomly to fire shots and defend its goal.

15. Rosebowl Football.

This 1920s foosball-style game was one of the first games ever to hit the floor at Spring Lake. The original owner's wife knit mini tops for each player on the two opposing teams.

All photos by Joseph Lin / BuzzFeed

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