Houston Forecast: Problems for Coin-Op

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At this writing, communication with the business crowd in Houston was almost nil. Readers all know about the catastrophe that hit America’s fourth largest city. What we don’t yet know is the extent of the damage this disaster has dropped on operators in this location-rich part of the world. But it can’t be good. And, it was still raining! Hard!!

Bob Roe, service chief over at the AVS Companies outlet in Dallas, said their Houston office (the former Franz place on Dennis Street) will probably be closed for days to come, maybe for the entire week, as they try to assess the damage.

Shortly after we caught up with Bob, AVS President Vince Gumma issued the following statement: “Due to the flooding from Hurricane Harvey, the AVS Houston office will be closed until further notice. All Houston employees have been contacted and are safe.

“At this time, we have been told that Dennis Street is still dry and we do not believe there is any damage to our building. Once the rain ends and someone can get to the building, we will release an update as to when the office will reopen.

“Many of you have asked if there is anything you can do to help. As we get more information and see what the needs may be, we will update everyone on relief efforts.

“Please keep everyone in the area in your thoughts and prayers as the storm continues,” wrote Vince.

Global VR’s Elaine Shirley, who lives with husband Steve in a three-level townhouse downtown on Crawford Street, just blocks from the AVS office, says they’ve been blessed with just a little water leaking, and feeling sort of guilty about it. “We’ve been watching truckloads of evacuees coming down this street. . .or should I say ‘river’ . . .and it breaks your heart,” she said.

“Everyone who can is helping these people who got washed out of their homes,” Elaine advised. “They’re volunteering at the evacuation center, donating needed items, and are actually out on the streets trying to keep storm drains clear of debris. Everyone is pitching in to help, and I’m proud to be a Texan and a Houstonian,” she declared.

Elaine has been trying to reach industry friends in the area and got her pal Charlie Kalas at Joystix Amusements. She said, “His house is flooded. So he, Lindsey and baby Athena are living on the second floor of their home now. The good news is he thinks Joystix is good. He is watching it through the cameras he installed.”

Additionally, RePlay heard from Triotech’s David Swafford, who at this writing said: “We are fine, high and dry, but everywhere around us is a disaster! It’s extremely bad here, and many people are suffering tremendous loss. So we are very lucky, but we still have a couple of more days to survive.”

Meantime, any Houstonian – or any Texan affected by Hurricane Harvey – who gets this on a computer or mobile device, please let us know how you are by emailing editor@replaymag.com. God bless you all.

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