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Milwaukee's first arcade bar opens in Old World Third

Posted at 6:56 PM, Dec 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-21 19:56:30-05

If you’re looking to spend a fun night out in downtown Milwaukee, grab your quarters and be ready to relive your childhood memories at Milwaukee’s first arcade bar. 

1983 Arcade Bar in Old World Third opened its doors to around a hundred patrons Thursday night where they got to play more than 20 arcade classics. 

“There’s people everywhere, everybody is having a good time,” said Dixie Lane. 

Ian Bunner and his friend had remote controllers in hand

“We’re playing NBA Jam, Mortal Combat was definitely a throwback for me,” he said. 

They stared down screens that reminded them of childhood days in the ‘90s. 

“It’s an eclectic feel, honestly. I grew up playing arcade games and I just couldn’t miss out on the chance,” Bunner said. 

The bar’s owner Michael Sampson says this idea has been in the works for a couple years. 

“My wife and I just do a lot of traveling around the U.S. and see this business model have success in other cities and really wanted to bring something fun and different to the city of Milwaukee,” Sampson said. 

Now that this bar is here to stay, patrons can expect to see many of the arcade classics switched out for new games every other month. Games that allow Lane to reminisce on the good old days.  

“You have two buttons, now try to win, so it’s a lot tougher, yet it’s a lot more fun,” she said.

The first 50 through the door Thursday night got 20 free tokens to kick things off.