Post-Shooting, Newtown Arcade Promotes Healing Through Gaming

Arcade space breathes new life into kids of Newtown Connecticut.

Towns that go through a school shooting find themselves transformed by the traumatic experience. While the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting sparked a national debate on gun control, what local residents need on a more immediate level are big ideas that can quickly materialize, bring the community together to help kids and adults cope with the tragedy.

A new, not-for-profit arcade has opened in Newtown Connecticut to help families heal after the Sandy Hook shootings. The arcade is funded by donations and was created with the help of the town. From the generous retail space it occupies to the electrical work, everything was done by town members to support each other. The arcade is currently a temporary experiment but it has the potential to become a longstanding part of Newtown’s cultural fabric.

A large part of overcoming tragedy is creating new associations and thought loops in the minds of victims. The project gets us thinking about the potential for gaming to be a galvanizing force in reviving communities, re-shaping public space, and helping locals form new memories. The arcade center is essentially breathing new energy into the town by providing a new destination that appeals to different generations of residents in different ways. Watch the video below by Polygon:

Sandy Hook Arcade Center

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