We got to the Greater Tacoma Convention & Trade Center around 2pm on Thursday to check on the set-up, and sure enough everything was being done to get ready for Friday’s opening.
The Greater Tacoma Convention & Trade Center
The lobby was looking a little sparse, but most of the action there doesn’t take place until later in the day and early on Friday morning.  The machines for the kids area were arriving, and the seminar area was fully-built and ready to go.
The lobby where registration takes place
Some of the machines for the kids play area
The seminars area
Mike Lorrain had an impressive set-up with three cameras, a new mixing desk and a multi-mic radio system.  The seminars will all be streamed live and available to playback online, so we won’t be recording them here.  We will be photographing them all and summarising the talks though.
Mike’s seminar control station
Let’s go through the main doors and see what was happening in the main show hall.
Into the main hall
The main show desk is directly in front of the entrance.  It is here that raffle tickets are sold and the show announcements made.  They already had the Houdini machine which will be the grand prize which will be drawn on Sunday afternoon.
Setting up the show desk
Turning left, we came to the Nitro Pinball stand.  Nitro usually has the latest machines and this year is no different, with the big draw being two new Thunderbirds machines from Homepin.
The two Thunderbirds machines on the Nitro Pinball stand
This is the first time these machines have been shown in North American, so there is bound to be much attention on them once the show opens.  We took a bunch of pictures, but rather than spend too long on the game here you’ll find them at the end of today’s report.
Elsewhere, things were coming together.
The view from the front left corner of the hall
Trucks were turning up at the loading dock and being unloaded
Unloaded machines waiting to go into the hall
Pinballs to go into the hall
Video games, carefully-wrapped
The hall was filling up, with vendors also setting up their stands.
There’s no mistaking