Renton bar Local 907 set to open new arcade

It's coming. Video games will soon inhabit downtown Renton at the Local 907's new arcade, set to open in June.
— image credit: Tracey Compton, Renton Reporter

Fun and games are headed to downtown Renton, as the owners of bar Local 907 plan to open an arcade in June across from their current location on South Third Street.

Their new space, formerly Cedar Chest Antiques and Pop Gourmet, will feature about 50 arcade games, a luncheon bar, high-speed wireless access and an outdoor patio area, with a four-foot Jenga game set. Beer will be served and wine in the future, but there will also be milkshakes, ice cream novelties, soda, pizza, nachos and other snack foods.

The arcade will be an all-ages venue until 7 p.m. and youth can stay until 8 p.m. with an adult chaperone. The arcade becomes a 21 and up pub from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m.

"Don't know specifically the games, but we're kind of going for the old school '80s, early '90s style of arcade games," said Pete Olive, an owner. "So, Defender, Pac Man, Ms. Pac Man, Donkey Kong – we will have a couple of newer games spliced in there, just for people to remember some of the early '90s games before arcades kind of went away."

Local 907 owners, Olive, Terrence Vaccaro and Scott Fjelstad, are working with a video-game operator, who has been able to place about 85 percent of the games on their want list. There will be about 20 pinball machines, electro-mechanical games and 30 arcade video games that will rotate every couple of months. In addition to the giant Jenga game outside there will also be Washers, which are like a game of horseshoes.

Olive's favorite game is Bubble Bobble, a video game from the 1980s that features a dragon that shoots bubbles.

"(There are) so many games that we've enjoyed over our lives; we just want to have a nice flow of games that everyone can enjoy and have fun with," Olive said.

The idea came to the owners a couple of years ago, when they realized there isn't really a lot of places for families to hang out in downtown Renton. A bartender at the Local 907 at the time had two young boys, who would leave Renton often to find something to do.

"I know The Landing is a nice place for people to go shop and they can go there with a lot of people," said Olive. "But in downtown, there wasn't a lot. There are bars; there are eateries, but there's nowhere for people to actually, like, go hangout."

Once the space across the street from the pub became available, plans came together. Now the owners are working with the City of Renton on licensing issues and hope to have everything, including construction, finished for a June 1 opening.

Business has been good at the current bar and Olive counts still being in business a big deal.

"We feel like we have a long time to be down here in Renton, to build our business," he said. "It's an area we really enjoy and like."

Olive wants to be supportive of kids in school, so the arcade won't open until 3 p.m. on weekdays when school is in session.

"We don't want to have a truancy issue," he said. "We want kids in school."He also doesn't want the Local 907's arcade to have that "bad reputation" arcades get for being a "den of sometimes rambunctious kids," Olive said.

"There is some of that and that is to be expected, but we want to be able to ensure that we can stave off any shenanigans," he said. "We want to let people know that we're not going to tolerate any problems. If you start a fight you won't be able to come back ever again. I don't care if you are an adult or a kid, you just won't be able to come back."

The owners hope to build something with their new arcade that the community can enjoy.


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