Local man seeks to break Guinness World Record for most hours playing pinball

HAMILTON — A local man will soon attempt to set the record for most hours playing a pinball machine.

Jim Foliano, executive director at Ticket to Hope, already holds a world record for receiving the most high-fives in 24 hours. He will work on the pinball record at Pinball Garage in Hamilton where he must play the “Avengers: Infinity Quest Pinball Machine” for at least 63 hours, which is just more than the current record.

His goal is also to raise money for the same pinball machine to be purchased for The Joe Nuxhall Miracle League Fields’ forthcoming, year-round indoor facility — The Hope Center.

“It’s called the ‘Game On Give On Pinball Purchase Fundraiser.’ Jake Sweeney Automotive Group is our Gold Ball Sponsor, and it’s going to be a whole weekend of fun at Pinball Garage,” Foliano said. “They are in the process of building The Hope Center, and inside, there will be a game room, and this will be the inaugural piece in the game room,” he said.

After breaking his first Guinness World Record for “The Most High-Fives in 24-Hours,” achieving 15,338 high-fives in a day during this year’s Flying Pig Marathon weekend, he’s at it again, hoping to break the World Record for the “Longest Marathon Playing Pinball” in January.

Foliano was notified by the Guinness World Record officials early in July, confirming he had attained the high-five record.

“In terms of Guinness World Records, I grew up reading the book. So, I was getting these books once a year, and it had all the insane people and their pictures, the long fingernail lady, and the people with the longest necks. I’ve always been a fan of that stuff, but I’ve also been trying to think of ways to grow the brand, get more people involved, and build community,” said Foliano.

The previous record was 14,607 high-fives, set by Pete Timbs of Australia during the Bridge to Brisbane fun run in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, on Sept. 2, 2012.

Foliano’s achievement also helped Ticket to Hope send 1,000 community members to the Cincinnati Reds game on Aug. 7.

Based in Hamilton, Ticket to Hope is a nonprofit whose mission is to bring hope to individuals needing it the most by creating unforgettable experiences.

Ticket To Hope creates an inclusive life-changing experience for those in the community. These experiences include event tickets, and often there’s a need for transportation.

Some nonprofits want to receive tickets from Ticket to Hope, but sometimes they don’t have a means of getting their community members to and from an event. Many of them don’t have cars, they come from homeless shelters or foster families.

Foliano said his first Guinness World Record goal was realized with support from a team of volunteers, the community, and thousands of high-five participants.

“People just went above and beyond to help me get the World Record,” Foliano said.

He hopes to rally that same kind of community support for his second attempt.

“The neat part about this one, compared to what I did before, is this is in Hamilton at the Pinball Garage,” said Foliano, who is a Hamilton resident.

“Since I moved to Hamilton, Brad Baker’s name has come up a lot. I know he does a ton for the community, so he’s definitely somebody I wanted to partner with in some way,” he said.

Foliano will begin playing pinball at 9 p.m. Jan. 11. During the hours when Pinball Garage is closed, Foliano will continue to play. What the Flip, a pinball live-streaming company will stream the event from start to finish. He will be playing on an Avengers: Infinity Quest Pinball Machine.

“I will be playing pinball straight up until Sunday at noon for 63 straight hours,” Foliano said. “One of the rules is you have to play the same machine throughout the entirety of the event.”

Foliano said he “never really played pinball before” prior to practicing for the past four to six months.

“I’ve really just been diving into this game, and it’s a lot of fun. You can learn a lot from it, and it’s exciting for kids. It’s just a phenomenal game. It’s really cool,” he said.

In conjunction with the Guinness World Record attempt, community members can get involved by supporting the “Game On Give On” fundraiser.

“Throughout the event, we’ll be raising funds to support the Joe Nuxhall Miracle League Fields, a cause close to our hearts. Notably, our efforts will contribute to furnishing their upcoming game room within the much-anticipated The Hope Center with a brand-new pinball machine,” Foliano said.

Silver Ball Sponsors include Miami Valley Gaming, Kruger & Hodges “Your Hometown Injury Lawyers” and Unsung Salvage Design Company.

Throughout the weekend, during regular business hours, there will be food and drink specials, sports autograph raffles, custom T-shirt sales with all proceeds going toward the pinball machine.

“People can come, keep me awake, and have fun with it,” Foliano said.

Andrew Robishaw of Lakeland, Florida currently holds the Guinness World Record for the “Longest Marathon Playing Pinball,” at 62 hours and 21 minutes. He achieved the record from Sept. 1-3, 2023.

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