M&P Amusement employees Jafet Camacho, left, and Phil Arkward install two custom "Rev’s Ball" games in the picnic area at Santander Stadium
M&P Amusement employees Jafet Camacho, left, and Phil Arkward install two custom "Rev's Ball" games in the picnic area at Santander Stadium on Monday. (BILL KALINA — bkalina@yorkdispatch.com)

Gene Goodman rolled skeeballs toward holes with the highest point values, showing onlookers that baseball won't be the only game played at Santander Stadium this year.

The vice president of M&P Amusement Co. said the Springettsbury Township business sees its latest deal with the York Revolution as a chance to boost local sales.

"We've been in York for more than 80 years, but we do most of our business everywhere else in the U.S.," Goodman said.

M&P Amusement, which refurbishes and makes custom games, typically sells to customers who can afford a higher price point. Most of the company's products, such as pinball machines and arcade games, start at about $1,500.

Clients include professional athletes, heirs to family fortunes, restaurant chains and guys building man caves.

Most recently, M&P Amusement sold three custom games to the Revs — two skeeball machines and a hammer game.

The games: The skeeball machines bear the baseball team's logo and colors, but they were originally blue and pink and served users along the New Jersey boardwalk.

M&P Amusement worked for three weeks to restore and customize the games for the Revs, showing a level of dedication that impressed Eric Menzer, team president and general manager.

"We could buy these machines from anywhere, but only a local company would go to town and customize them like this," he said.


Guests will be able to try out the new skeeball machines and other games during Fan Fest from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday. After that, the games will only be available to those with tickets for the stadium's picnic pavilion.

A changing business: Refurbishing old games and doing custom work is one of the ways M&P Amusement has stayed alive.

The company started in 1932, operating music boxes and candy, pinball and cigarette machines. It eventually grew into one of the largest arcade companies in the country, owning about 200 arcades during the 1980s.

But electronic games made arcades a relic of the past.

"People wanted to play games at home, and that killed our industry. Vacations are the only time people go to arcades now. We went from making $1 million a week to being $10 million in debt," Goodman said.

The company rebounded by selling its arcades and revamping its business. M&P Amusement has installed flat screens in all the old arcade-driving games, customized riding games to accommodate tall NBA players and now restores old games for modern users.

M&P Amusement also rents games to company parties, weddings and other events.

"We're constantly changing and evolving, and that's how we've been around this long," he said.

—Reach Candy Woodall at cwoodall@yorkdispatch.com.