Boy’s cardboard arcade about to pay for college (VIDEO)

Caine Monroy\'s homemade arcade inspired a short film and a scholarship drive. (Courtesy \'Caine\'s Arcade\')

WASHINGTON – A 9-year-old boy’s homemade arcade is paying off in the game of life.

Caine Monroy built an entire arcade out of cardboard boxes found in his father’s auto parts store in east Los Angeles. His DIY creations began with a modified pop-a-shot basketball hoop and expanded to include even a self-created claw machine fashioned from a string and a hook.

Caine’s Arcade also features a security system, prizes and tickets funneled (by Caine) through the machines. For $1, players get four turns on the games, but a month-long “Fun Pass” offers 500 turns and costs just $2 — “a great deal,” according to the budding entrepreneur.

Still, despite his efforts, Caine managed to snag only one customer, who came to the auto parts shop looking for a door handle for his car. But Nirvan Mullick, blown away by Caine’s creation, also made a short film about it.

The film version of “Caine’s Arcade” not only tells the story of how the DIY game center came to be, but also shows how Mullick — with help from Facebook and Reddit — organized a surprise flash mob of customers clamoring to play Caine’s games.

Check out the film below:

While a rough cut of “Caine’s Arcade” apparently debuted last year at the conference DIY Days, the documentary hit the Internet Monday. So far, it has 712,000 plays on Vimeo and nearly 239,000 on YouTube.

But that’s not all: A fundraising drive aimed at providing Caine with a college scholarship had garnered more than $62,500 by Wednesday morning.

“Imagine what this kid could build with an Engineering degree!” the pitch for the scholarship drive says.

Find out more information about Caine’s Arcade and “Caine’s Arcade” at this link.

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)


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