Chinatown Fair Arcade Reopening at 8 Mott Street!

Posted on: March 17th, 2012 at 9:19 am by

When neighborhood businesses go belly-up, there isn’t always a groundswell of public mourning.  Just a quiet passing with a gentle note from the owners.  But after the beloved Chinatown Fair abruptly shuttered its home at 8 Mott Street exactly one year ago, gamers left their love for the mecca on the shuttered gates (“I fell in love with Bob here”; “Insert one soul here”) while others gathered on the adjacent stoop to play fantasy card games and handhelds.  And they continue to do so. BUT NOW A REVIVAL IS REPORTEDLY AFOOT! The proverbial phoenix is arising from the ashes.

Photo Credit: Kurt Vincent

Independent filmmakers Kurt Vincent and Owen Strock, who are wrapping their documentary about the iconic institution (Arcade: The Last Night at Chinatown Fair), spotted workers delivering game cabinets back into the old Mott Street location earlier this week. The rumor on the street was that the gamer paradise was reopening. Former manager Henry Cen, who opened Next Level Arcade in Brooklyn after the closure, confirmed that some dude named Lonnie was behind the relaunch.

A group of men were moving some of the old games back inside.  One of the men introduced himself as Lonnie.  He told me they were hired to move in the games and empty the trash that remained inside.  I spoke with Henry Cen, co-owner of Next Level and integral part of the old Chinatown Fair, and he told me a guy named Lonnie was reopening the arcade at 8 Mott Street.

Neither Cen nor longtime owner Sam have a hand in the reincarnated Chinatown Fair, slated to open as soon as next month. Interestingly enough, however, this Lonnie character once bartended at another city landmark – his uncle’s establishment, Max’s Kansas City.

Last Night at Chinatown Fair, Feb. 2011

Needless to say, this great news throws a wrench in the Arcade project.  But totally worth it.

[via Gothamist]

Recent Stories

Site of Mass Displacement: A Chinatown Gentrified by Galleries [Op-Ed]

The following was written by Liz Moy of the Chinatown Art Brigade. There is an ongoing perception that Manhattan’s Chinatown has stayed relatively the same throughout the years whilst other low-income neighborhoods of color have been overtaken by gentrification. Ask someone how Chinatown fares in an increasingly unaffordable city and they’ll likely say, at least […]

Matthew Silver, the 2014 Mr. Lower East Side
Off Cycle ‘Mr. Lower East Side Pageant’ Returns Tomorrow Night … in Ridgewood

Surprise! The Mr. Lower East Side Pageant returns tomorrow night, some four months earlier than usual. Unlike earlier this year, the iconic underground beauty contest won’t be anywhere near its namesake neighborhood. This time, for the 17.5th annual event, the shenanigans will go down at the Footlight Bar in Ridgewood, Queens. You’re probably wondering about the off-cycle nature […]

2nd Annual ‘Lower East Side Cider Fest’ is Happening on Sunday

The orchards are, in fact, coming back to Orchard Street … albeit temporarily. With apple picking season wrapping up, the 2nd annual Lower East Cider Fest is kicking off this weekend, as part of the larger “Cider Week NYC” celebration happening throughout the – wait for it – Big Apple. The event will showcase notable cider makers and apple growers […]

Clinton Street ‘Casita’ Tree Tunnel Uprooted for Good

The arboreal attraction (and known rat hangout) at the southeast corner of Clinton and Stanton Streets is officially kaput. That’s right, no more tree tunnel. A chainsaw crew arrived last week to chop and uproot the leaning line of trees comprising the overhang. This was a complete removal, unlike the trim of overgrowth that transpired […]

Delancey Street Gets its First LinkNYC Kiosk

Yesterday afternoon, the city unveiled the first LinkNYC pornhub kiosk for Delancey Street. It’s situated just east of the Bowery, where these things are multiplying faster than gizmo in a swimming pool. The 9-foot-6-inch unit is not yet active, though. LinkNYC stations have been criticized pretty much from the get-go. In league with the soulless […]

  • Guest

    Will they have the live chicken tic tac toe machine?

    • alyce1213

      I seriously doubt it.