LAKEWOOD, NJ -- Jersey Jack Pinball has continued to build a distributor network for its new flipper game, Wizard of Oz, with the appointment of four more companies to represent the product. They are Automated Services (Milford, CT); Fun Billiards (Mesquite, TX); Joystix Entertainment (Houston, TX) and PinCades (Griffith, IN).
[photo] BACK TO THE FUTURE: Jersey Jack Pinball is making steady progress toward its goal of producing 1,000 new Wizard of Oz flipper games by the end of the year. Above, design team puts finishing touches on whitewood playfield in the shop.
Automated Services is led by industry veteran Michael Daddona Jr., an experienced vending operator and games distributor. A few years ago, he announced that his Pinballs.com and Pinball Store business would combine to form Automated Services/Pinballs.com, a distributorship for commercial operators in southern New England. Daddona's retail business ships internationally. | SEE STORY
"I think the Wizard of Oz is the greatest pinball title of all time," Daddona predicted.
Fun Billiards, in northern Texas (Mesquite is just east of Dallas) is headed by Steve Nordtech and staffed by a devoted team that's passionate about pinball and celebrated for high-end pinball restoration, according to Jack Guarnieri, founder of Jersey Jack Pinball.
Joystix Entertainment, managed by Charles Kallas, has been serving Houston and the surrounding south Texas region since 1987, Guarnieri reported. It has one of the largest showrooms in the country.
Jesse Trueblood, who runs PinCades, recently opened a new store and has stocked it with restored pinball machines as well as a broad spectrum of other coin amusements from classic to contemporary.
Guarnieri, who appointed his first three distributors -- two in the U.S. and one in Australia -- earlier this summer said that preproduction development of Wizard of Oz is proceeding according to plan. | SEE STORY
"The mechanism for the spinning house is complete," he said, "and the mechanism for the Melting Witch has started." The Flying Monkey and Witch's Castle, now in the final design stages, will be completed shortly, Guarnieri added.
Plans call for an initial limited production run of 1,000 special Emerald City Wizard of Oz pieces by year's end, and preorders are approaching 900, the industry pioneer explained.
Guarnieri, active in the industry since 1975, began his career servicing electromechanical flipper games. While he went on to design other kinds of game, develop amusement centers and break new ground in online sales, his early experience continues to fuel his enthusiasm for the Golden Age of pinball.