You Can Thank Vineland, NJ For Skee-Ball Arcade Game
Was there anything better than spending a Saturday afternoon at the boardwalk arcade? It really doesn't matter which boardwalk you considered part of your stomping grounds. Chances are, you spent many a summer afternoon blowing through token after token at a claw game, shooting something or other, playing Mortal Kombat or Pacman, or everyone's favorite arcade game, Skee-ball.
Wouldn't you know that the last game mentioned actually was invented right here in South Jersey? So many awesome inventions and patents have come out of the southern region of the Garden State, but to discover that Skee-ball is one of them just invokes a strong sense of nostalgia, doesn't it?
The inventor's name was Joseph Fourestier Simpson. Though native to Philadelphia, Simpson was residing in Vineland, Cumberland County at the time of filing for the Skee-ball patent. Reportedly though, Simpson wasn't much of a marketer. According to NJSpotlightNews.com, Skee-ball didn't see much success until another man by the name of Jonathan Dickinson Este essentially took over the rights to the game. It was he who would go on to set up alleys and sites for the game all throughout the region.
Este even opened up a spot in Atlantic City during the first few years after acquiring the rights to the game. Eventually, all the best Skee-ball players in the nation would flock to Atlantic City to play in Skee-ball Stadium. That would be where the very first Skee-ball tournament would be held.
From there, that's all she wrote. It's not unheard of for people to find a passion for Skee-ball. You can even join Skee-ball leagues!
Who knew that one of the most popular arcade games in the world has such deep-rooted ties to South Jersey? Learn more HERE.