In August of 1991, with the release of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES), kids across the United States squealed with delight as they carefully unpacked that gleaming box to begin their inaugural run of Super Mario World or SimCity. Many parents looked gleefully on, happy to have provided their children with a safe new pastime (then waited for bedtime so they could take the SNES out for a spin themselves!) probably not realizing how much the brand new gaming console would influence their kids’ childhoods. Fast forward to 2016 and at its 25th anniversary, you’ll still find members of the Millennial generation plugging in those old familiar controllers for a nostalgic walk down SNES’s memory lane.
Image via Twitter.com/SNESparty
Given the sentimental nature of SNES gaming, it isn’t surprising that there’s still a niche group interested in collecting all of their old favorites (and discovering some new ones)! Reilly Hadden, the gamer behind SNES Party! is just one such cartridge connoisseur. He often seeks titles (like the games above) to add to his collection and knows that thrift stores are a great place to look. He even broadcasts game play of his favorite videogames on the live-streaming video site, Twitch. It’s clear that although the SNES is now on its way to 30, this culture is not dead.
Image via TheGridGoodwill.com
Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont (Charlotte) also recognizes that because Goodwill®’s store stock is collected via donations from community members, they become the best place for gamers to track down rare titles, especially decades-old games like those for the Super Nintendo! In so many cases, people will drop off boxes that have lived in their attics, basements, or closets with barely a glance inside. Other times, family members clean out loved ones’ homes without knowing the value of the items they discard. This particular Goodwill agency has even created a specific website – The Grid – to bring gamers and these discarded games together again. Here, one can browse from a curated selection of electronic donations and, yes, the SNES is represented.
Image via ShopGoodwill.com
Similarly, Goodwill Industries of Orange County (CA) has created an online shopping experience through ShopGoodwill that doesn’t neglect the SNES – the best-selling console of its era. It really only makes sense that people who enjoy spending time with their electronics are able to browse for new finds from the comfort of their home screen. Maybe the most wonderful part is that even when shopping online, customers are helping Goodwill to address the unique needs of families across the U.S. and Canada by providing financial literacy and coaching opportunities to develop and meet specific financial and asset building goals. Finding a rare videogame is awesome…finding a rare videogame while helping others is even better.
Even if you’re not a gamer, it’s worth peeking in the counter case for old game cartridges the next time you’re at Goodwill. Some sell for quite a pretty penny to super fans of the Super Nintendo and every penny that you give to Goodwill contributes to their philanthropic goals.