Carmen and Ken Burzynski had a vision to improve the Benton public square when they opened County Seat Antique Mall at 303 Public Square almost 10 years ago.
In an effort to attract attention to the downtown area, the couple hosted a photographical display of high school graduation classes last month and a storewide sale earlier this month that only excluded gold and silver coins.
“We are still catching our breath from last weekend’s sale that featured antique furniture, glassware, sports cards and memorabilia, stoneware, primitives, mid-century modern furniture, gas and oil collectibles, vintage clothing and artifacts,” Ken Burzynski said.
He said the store is gearing up for another first in downtown Benton. “We are hosting a pinball wizard vintage pinball tournament to begin at approximately 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 18,” he said. “This will be a first for Southern Illinois.
“We are accepting registration for 10 players per flight,” Burzynski said. “Participants must be over the age of 18.”
He said trophies and cash prizes would be awarded.
“We have 10 vintage pinball machines available for the competition,” Burzynski said. “There is a $25 entry fee per player. The overall winner gets a large cash prize and a large pinball wizard trophy.”
Burzynski said one of the store’s vendors owns the 1960s and 70s pinball machines. “He delivers the pinball machines for free locally when they are sold and sets them up in the new owner’s space,” he said.
Book signings follow on Saturday, June 1 when eight area authors converge on County Seat Antique Mall.
“These are the most prolific Southern Illinois authors of the past quarter century,” Burzynski said. “The authors will be here from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.”