Got kids who love games? Get them off whatever mobile device they’re playing and take them to one of these spots, most of which harken back to a time when getting a pixelated frog across a freeway was the pinnacle of gaming success. Whether your’e a pinball pro or a dedicated video gamer, you’ll find something to play at one of these awesome arcade and game museums across the U.S.

The Strong – National Museum of Play – Rochester, Ny

This place knows its games. Not only is it home to the International Center for the History of Electronic Games and the National Toy Hall of Fame; it's also got the world’s largest collection of historical toys and games. Consequently, it's a pretty great place to play. Little gamers will want to head straight for the eGame Revolution exhibit, where they can play their way through a collection that spans from the dawn of PONG to today's virtual worlds. Feeling retro? Step into a recreated eighties arcade and see how your kids stack up in a game of Space Invaders (and others).

Fun Fact: Visitors can also play dodgeball on an LED Lightspace floor; create artwork on a gigantic Lite Brite-like pixel wall; or challenge friends to the latest games on the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and Wii. Meanwhile, pinball wizards will can explore the Strong's Pinball Playfields, a (partially) playable collection that spans more than 80 years.

photo: courtesy of The Strong

  • Pacific Pinball Museum - Alameda, Ca
  • The Pinball Hall of Fame - Las Vegas, Nv
  • Museum of Math - New York, Ny
  • American Classic Arcade Museum - Laconia, Nh
  • Arcadia: America’s Playable Arcade Museum - McLean, Il
  • National Videogame Museum - Frisco, Tx
  • Pinball PA - Pittsburgh, Pa
  • The Strong - National Museum of Play - Rochester, Ny
  • Interactive Museum of Gaming and Puzzelry - Beaverton, Or
  • The Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment - Oakland, Ca
  • Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum - Simi Valley, Ca


Have you been to one of these game museums? Share with us in a comment below!

—Melissa Heckscher