Fun and games: Commissioners approve arcade games bid for The Clubhouse

Drew Butler
The Ardmore City Commission met via Zoom for the second time Monday evening. From Top left: Commissioner Sheryl Ellis, Commissioner Martin Dyer, Vice-Mayor Doug Pfau, Mayor John Moore, City Manager J.D. Spohn, City Clerk Lori Linney in the Commission Chambers, Commissioner Beth Windel via Zoom, and Director of I.T. Rob Newell via Zoom.

It was almost business as usual during Monday night’s meeting of the Ardmore City Commission. There were no new COVID-19 related items introduced in the agenda, and the only difference from the norm came from the video conference format which allowed Commissioner Beth Windel to join the meeting virtually. Citizens were able to watch the proceedings via Zoom or over Sparklight Cable on Channel 56.

One of the main items on the agenda was the purchase of new arcade games for the upcoming Clubhouse. Commissioners approved an RFP in the amount of $307,187.40 from Betson Enterprises out of Dallas for the approval of 34 arcade games to be installed.

Ardmore Parks and Recreation Director Teresa Ervin said up to 57 people will be able to play the games at one time. In addition to video games, The Clubhouse will also feature classic arcade games such as Skee-Ball, Down the Clown, prize crane machines, and a basketball toss. Ervin said rather than giving out tickets for prizes, prize points will be calculated onto cards.

“It’s like when we were younger, and you’d end up with a big roll of tickets to keep up with,” Ervin said. “Now it’s all loaded onto your card, and you’ll use your card to cash in your points at the redemption counter.”

Ervin said that in addition to the prizes that can be collected from winning points, the redemption counter will also have a few branded Clubhouse items for purchase. These items include lanyards, bracelets and a variety of Clubhouse t-shirts.

Ervin said Betson will be coming up to install the machines, help with the arcade layout and train the staff in their operation. Two staff members will also travel to their facility in Dallas for a more in-depth lesson on machine maintenance and troubleshooting.

Ervin said the games will be traded out for new games periodically, and she added that every game ordered might not be available because of the pandemic.

“These games aren’t entirely for sure because of availability issues due to the virus,” Ervin said. “If we’re able to open on schedule, it might be a difficult time to get all the games in. So we may end up looking at other options or holding out for the games we’ve ordered.”

She said construction is currently continuing on pace, and The Clubhouse could open as soon as some time in June — barring any kind of social distancing restrictions that might still be in place.

“The city is going to be following all the guidelines put into place to keep everybody safe, but taking all of that out of the equation, I feel like we’re looking at opening sometime in June,” Ervin said. “I’m really excited to get another step closer now that we’ve got the games approved.”