Syracuse Arcade Bar Has Opening Hiccup


We reported Friday, Aug. 21, that a new arcade bar in Syracuse, N.Y., called Three Lives opened. Just a day after their grand opening, state officials have shut down the arcade portion of the bar for violating coronavirus guidelines for bars and restaurants, according to

Owner Jon Page with two of his video games in the physically distanced arcade.

Those guidelines prohibit them from offering games like darts, pool and cornhole, but physically distanced arcade games appeared to be in the clear, though perhaps not anymore. (Ax throwing, however, has been approved at other businesses in the state.)

Owner Jon Page said his lawyers were working to rectify the situation so he can turn back on his eight classic arcade cabinets and the video game consoles. “People cannot even bring in their own controllers and play,” he said, referring to the Xbox and Playstation systems. “Makes zero sense.”

He wrote in a Facebook post to patrons: “As you all know, we are strict when adhering to all Covid guidelines and procedures. From our understanding there is no restriction against playing video games while dining to keep yourself entertained.”

This example is the latest in unclear guidelines relating to arcades. Many states have failed to address them directly, leading to confusion among operators who thought they were all set to go. Other states like Massachusetts lumped arcades in with ball pits. Regarding that, George Smith of Family Entertainment Group previously stated: “The issues we’re having are ones of fairness, equality and the antiquated way they see our business. Citing ‘ball pit’ specifically in their language shows how out of touch they are with what our business is today.”


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