September 13, 2019, 8:30 PM – The quaint downtown area of West Dundee, IL is bustling with activity as the town celebrates its annual Heritage Fest with live entertainment and fireworks. Just around the corner from the festivities, Scott Lambert, proprietor of the Underground Retrocade is inside fine-tuning the settings on his camera. Beyond the lens of the camera stands several people, all decked out in a variety of Underground Retrocade T-shirts. They gather around the beautiful background of all three Donkey Kong arcade cabinets while Scott makes his final adjustments. “OK! Here we go!” says Scott, as he sits in front of the group and the camera begins its countdown. Ten seconds and one bright flash later, Scott has successfully captured a significant moment in Underground Retrocade’s history – Its seventh anniversary.
Underground Retrocade first opened its doors just a short walk down the same street as its current location. My first visit to the arcade was on June 23, 2012, and after spending several hours there, I walked out of the arcade very impressed with the wide variety of games. The arcade continued to grow until disaster struck on April 18, 2013. Record-setting rain caused the Fox River to flood, and the murky river water breached the lower floor of the arcade, damaging several game cabinets in the process. When the water receded, work began to get the arcade back on track. However, when an opportunity to move presented itself, the Underground Retrocade moved down the road to its current location.
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