Storybook Land, Egg Harbor Twp, NJ

Unfortunately New Jersey’s been hit with a lot of rain and really crappy weather of late.  It has made it harder and harder to get out and press new penny machines especially when most are located outdoors, but I was determined to try.

This past weekend we decided to test out luck and headed down towards Atlantic City to a place called Storybook Land located in Egg Harbor Township.  This is a place that a lot of people have been too during their childhood, and just seems to have been around forever.  From our house it took about an hour and a half to get there, and it rained the entire drive.  However I guess my karma has been in good standing order and mother nature decided to clear things up for a few hours to let check this place out.


The main building that greets you when you arrive is designed to look like a castle.  This does include the ticket purchasing area, as well as the gift shop when you leave.  Not sure if you can tell by the above picture but there were only about 5 cars in the parking lot when we showed up.  This turned out to work in our favor as all the rides were operational, but with only a handful of people in the park there were no lines for anything.


We headed in through the main entrance and just started wondering.  Oh did I mention there was a penny machine here?  I’ll review that in more detail shortly.  This cute little park is designed after all the classic mother goose nursery rhymes, and other childhood favorites like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Alice in Wonderland, Moby Dick, and a whole lot more.  There were plenty of rides for the kids to go on, and a lot of great detail all over the place.  They also had animals like sheep and goats that could be petted and fed.

IMG_6224   IMG_6200

Hanna is still a little young to know some of the stories but the nursery rhymes she was all about. The park also has some character cutouts that make for some cute pictures.  There was also an area that magically transports you to the north pole.


After wandering around for a while we needed to fuel up.  Towards the entrance of the park is The Dining Depot.  This has your classic theme park food, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, pizza, chicken fingers and fries, etc.  We ordered lunch and while waiting for it I took the opportunity to look for the penny machine that was located here, but came up empty.  I asked the employee’s if they knew whether the machine was located anywhere else in the park or if it was gone completely and they didn’t know.  Once we had finished eating our lunch we wandered around the park again checking out every little attraction and bathroom location we came across trying to find the machine.  With everyone starting to get tired we headed back towards the main entrance and headed through the gift shop that lead to the parking lot.  This way my last hope but it wasn’t located here either.  I asked another employee if they knew about the machine but was only told it has been taken away for repairs and didn’t know if it would be coming back.

Even though I was unable to acquire the pennies here it was still a nice outing for the family.  Truth be told I had actually stopped in to this park in 2013 on my way to Atlantic City.  At that time the lady running the ticket counter let me run in without a ticket to use the machine without having to buy a ticket.

NJ - Storybook Land Machine

As I mentioned back when I had visited originally the machine was located in the Dining Depot right by the queue you wait in to order food.


The 4 designs include: Humpty Dumpty, Mother Goose, a Carousel Horse, and the Storybook Land Train.

As with machines that get removed from a location, I always hope it’s just to have the designs updated and not removed permanently.  I’ll keep my fingers crossed, but for now if you visit Storybook Land it will have to be just for the nursery rhymes!


Disneyland 60th Diamond Celebration Coins

Way back on July 17th, 1955 Disneyland in Anaheim California had its grand opening day celebration.  Who other than Walt Disney himself could have predicted the huge success and amazing accomplishments his vision would have.  Here it is 2015 and the original Disneyland is celebrating its 60th Diamond Celebration.

DL 60th Banner

The park has undergone quite the transformation to help guests celebrate, and enjoy the parks in yet another unique way.  I really wish I could make it for a visit to see everything in person but unfortunately that just wasn’t in the cards this year.  So like a lot of people I have to celebrate from a distance.  However a few months ago some rumors began popping up online about special pressed coins that would be available during the celebration.  As the weeks went on more and more information began to surface and finally it all came true.

An announcement was made that there would be 60 (yes SIXTY) new pressed coins available during the celebration, and would only be around for a limited time.  On May 21st, 2015 the first new designs began appearing in the parks.  Currently as of the  writing of this there are 13 machines each with 3 designs, totaling 39 coins available as part of this special series.  To help guests find where all these new machines are, Disneyland put together a nice handout with the locations and brief design descriptions.

DL 60th Penny Handout

As you can see from the below pictures the handout is nicely designed and really a nice collectible.  I have seen people selling just this pamphlet on eBay for quite a bit of money.

DL 60th Penny Handout Inside 1   DL 60th Penny Handout Inside 2

With all these new coins designs it would be nice to have something to store them in.  Don’t worry Disney has you covered there as well.  They also designed a special 60th Diamond Celebration coin booklet to help keep everything in one place.

DL 60th Booklet Cover

Now let’s get into the new coin designs.  It’s taken quite a bit of work but I was able to obtain all 39 current designs available and will review each below.  First I wanted to explain that each coin does have a special back stamp.

60th Penny Back   60th Quarter Back

Above the design on the left is the back stamp on each of the pennies, and the picture on the right is the back of each quarter.

Let’s start small by checking out the designs available in Downtown Disney.  There are two machines here, both located in the World of Disney store.

DTD - World of Disney Store 01 Pennies

The first machine has designs of Donald, Goofy and Pluto.  Each of the pennies includes the Downtown Disney and D60 Logo.

DTD - World of Disney Store 02 Pennies

The second machine pressed pennies as well with the following images: Opening Day Castle & Attractions, Opening Day Walt Disney, and Opening Day Tinker Bell & Dumbo.

Next lets check out the machines available in Disney’s California Adventure Park.  Currently there are 3 machines available here.  The first was is located at Kingswell Camera Shop.

DCA - Kingswell Camera Shop Pennies

The designs available at this machine are: Carthay Circle, 60D Diamond Celebration, and Red Car Trolley.  Two of these designs include the California Adventure logo (Carthay & Trolley).  The next machine is located by Humphrey’s Service and Supplies.

DCA - Humphrey's Service Pennies

These pennies have the following designs: Celebrate, Soarin’, and Grizzly River Rapids.  The only other machine available right now in California Adventure is at Sideshow Shirts by Paradise Pier.

DCA - Sideshow Shirts Pennies

Some nice designs are on these pennies.  They include: Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, Fun Wheel, and California Screamin’.  With this park done lets heads over to Disneyland Park.  As you walk down main street the first quarter machine is available in the Train Station.

DL - MS Train Station Quarters

I always like the pressed designs on Quarters because of the extra-large surface there seems to be more available detail.  These coins had designs of: The Penny Arcade Skyline, Walt’s Apartment, and the Disneyland Railroad.  Just a short walk away the next machine is available in the Main Street Opera House, technically by the exit when you leave the theatre.

DL - MS Opera House Pennies

This machine presses penny designs which include: Critter Country Splash Mountain, Bow Tie Mickey, and Mickey’s Toontown.  Over in Adventureland at the Bazaar is the next available machine.

DL - Adventureland Bazaar Pennies

These pennies have very cool designs of some famous attractions in the park.  Indiana Jones Adventure, The Jungle Cruise, and The Tiki Room.  Over by one of my favorite rides Pirates of the Caribbean another machine is located in the Pieces of Eight Gift Shop.

DL - Pieces of Eight Gift Shop Pennies

Being in the New Orleans square are of the park these designs fit right in:  The Haunted Mansion, New Orleans Square Lamp Post, and a Pirate holding a Sword.  Nearby in Frontierland at the Bonanza Outfitters is the next penny machine.

DL - Bonanza Outfitters Pennies

These pennies have some cute Frontierland themed designs: Cowboy Mickey & Goofy, Sailing Ship Columbia, and the Mark Twain Riverboat.  After taking a ride on Splash Mountain if you head to Pooh’s Corner you can find the next available machine.

DL - Pooh Corner Pennies

My daughter really liked these pennies as Winnie the Pooh is her favorite right now.  The designs include: Piglet & Pooh, Christopher Robin & Owl, and Tigger & Eeyore.  What trip to Disneyland would be complete without stopping by Sleeping Beauty’s Castle.  Inside you can visit the Enchanted Chamber and get the second machine pressing designs on Quarters.

DL - Enchanted Chamber Quarters

This machine seems to be rolling coins a little short.  I received two sets of these coins and both came this way.  I also saw some other sets online that looked the same way but no matter still very nice designs.  It’s a Small World, Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, and Matterhorn Mountain.  Finally over in Tomorrowland is the last machine at this time.  The machine is located in the Star Trader Gift Shop by Space Mountain.

DL - Star Trader Gift Shop Pennies

I like anything monorail related so this set was really nice to have.  The designs include: The Monorail, The People Mover, and The Submarine Voyage.

Phew that was quite a walk through.  Here’s a picture of all the coins together in one shot.

60th First 39 Designs

As I mentioned above there is supposed to be 60 coins available in total and right now only 39 are on-stage.  So we still have 21 designs that should be arriving sometime in the near future.  It may take some time to get each of these sets for your own collection but I can say once you have them it is really a nice set to have.  The cast members in charge of these really out did themselves, and I can’t wait to see what the remaining designs look like.

Once Upon A Toy – Downtown Disney WDW

Another mega-multi design machine has been setup in Downtown Disney in Walt Disney World Orlando.  I don’t know if that’s actually what it should be called but that’s what I’m going with.  This is a similar machine to the one I visited and wrote about at Hollywood Studios that had 12 designs.  Unfortunately this machine doesn’t have 12 designs but rather only 8.  Doesn’t make much difference to me as I still think these new machines are really cool and hopefully get some people who wouldn’t usually get a pressed penny to try it out just for the unique experience.

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to use this machine in person since I’m stuck in Jersey until our next trip to Florida.  Instead a friend of mine was at a conference in Orlando and one evening went over to get the pennies for my collection.  His phone was dead by the time he was visiting so he didn’t get to take a picture of the machine cabinet but from what he described to me it sounds very similar to the one at Hollywood Studios.

DTD - Once Upon A Toy Pennies FL

As I mentioned this machine has 8 designs which are all part of a series about the popular Frozen animated movie.  These designs are different from all other Frozen designs currently available at the parks, and makes a really nice sub-set to collect.  Just like the other “mega-multi design machine” (I’m going to get this the official name just watch!) each individual design is $1.00 to press, or you can get all 8 for $5.00.  The machine does supply the coin which could be good or bad depending on your luck.

The designs are: #1 Elsa with her Snow Castle, #2 Anna & Elsa holding a Snow Flake, #3 Anna & Elsa looking at each other, #4 Anna, #5 Anna sitting in front of the Castle, #6 Elsa, #7 Olaf, and #8 Sven & Kristoff.  Phew!

As you can see from the picture above I lucked out with some nice shiny pennies, but I know these aren’t pre-1982 as I usually prefer.  A couple of the designs pressed a little short at the bottom but for the most part they came out really nicely.

Hopefully as time goes by we will see more and more of these machines placed on stage.  The higher cost per coins is a little worrisome, but I do like being able to get larger quantities of designs in one place.  There’s no such thing as too many pressed coins!

Star Wars Pennies – Hollywood Studios WDW

For those Star Wars fans out there a friend of mine in Florida gave me some good and bad news.  The good news is that the penny machine available only during the Star Wars Weekends in Hollywood Studios is back on stage.  The bad news is that the designs are the same ones that have been available the last two years.

In years past this machine has been located at Darth Mall near the Star Tours attraction, but this year it is at the Prop Shop which home to five other machines.

Star Wars Weekend Pennies

The three designs available are: Jedi Mickey, Princess Minnie, and Darth Goofy.  Pretty cool designs, and a great collectible for press coin and Star Wars collectors.

I wouldn’t bet on this machine being available beyond the end of the Star Wars Weekends ending June 14th.  So if you haven’t picked these up and you are visiting during a Star Wars weekend you better do so soon.   I’ll keep my fingers crossed that maybe next year they update the designs.

Casino Pier and Boardwalk – Seaside Heights, NJ

Memorial Day weekend what a wonderful weekend it was.  Who can complain about having an extra long weekend.  Not to mention living in Jersey you are never more than 30 minutes away from a beach.  Usually the Jersey shore gets really crazy on the Sunday before Memorial Day weekend so we decided to go and check it out on Saturday.  This usually is a great day to go as the crowds aren’t too crazy, but everything is open and waiting for visitors.  As I mentioned there are numerous beaches to choose from up and down the coast but we decided to check out Seaside Heights.

For those of you that might not know Seaside Heights was one of the many areas that was hit hard during Hurricane Sandy in October 2012.  There is a pretty memorable picture of the Pier falling into the Atlantic ocean, and a roller coaster that appears to be floating among the ways.

seaside sandy 2

In the years since the boardwalk has been rebuilt and the pier show above has been put back together.  It’s call the Casino Pier and was in full swing when we arrived.  It was a beautiful day but the breeze off the ocean made it a little chilly.

Seaside 01  Seaside 02

We took our time walking up and down the boardwalk and had to make a stop so Hanna could try her first deep-fried Oreo.  Not sure if you have ever tried one but wow you must.  I’m not a deep-fried food fan usually, but these are the exception to that.

Hanna fried oreos

After filling up on the Oreos we headed back towards Casino Pier and into the Arcade.  All the usual boardwalk games are in here including our personal favorite skee ball.  There was a vintage carousel inside that Hanna and I took a spin on.

Hanna seaside carousel

We wandered around the arcade see what else they had when I finally came across the one penny machine located here.  This machine seems to move each time I visit, but had the same designs from previous years.

NJ - Seaside Casion Pier Arcade 01a

The machine had 3 designs: A Carousel Horse, A Sand Artist, and a Sand Castle.  All three designs said Casino Pier and Seaside Heights, New Jersey displayed.  Here’s a close up of the marquee sign.

NJ - Seaside Casino Pier Arcade 01b

I pressed the coins to update the ones I already had in my collection.  The machine pressed the designs nicely and they only had a bit of a tail at the end.

NJ - Seaside Casino Pier Pennies

By this time we were ready to head home.  Due to the breeze off the water it was too cold for us to get onto the beach or water.  We decided to save that for a trip later on in the summer.  It was a nice quick trip to mark the official beginning of summer at the Jersey Shore.

TEC News Editor’s Awards

I have a lot of things to write about and so little time to get them all posted.  I was a little behind from our trip to Florida earlier this year and most weekends since my family has gone on little day trips and have visited lots of penny machines.  I promise to get them all posted but in the middle of doing so I received a special surprise in my mail yesterday from TEC.

For those of you that don’t know TEC is The Elongated Collectors Club.  I have been a member for at least 4 or 5 years I think.  It’s a great club if you are interested in the hobby of pressed coins.  You get a quarterly newsletter, and special pressed coins with each edition.  There is a small membership fee but to be honest between the newsletters, coins and fellow member’s always available to help give their advice and expertise on the subject it is worth every penny.

So as I came home from work yesterday my mail box was partially open due to a large envelope stashed inside.  The address label listed my name and my daughter Hanna’s name along with my TEC member number so I knew this was club related.  I waited until I got inside the house and called Hanna over to see what we had received.  What we found inside was really a wonderful surprise that I was totally not expecting.

TEC Award Hanna

TEC had honored Hanna and myself with each a cute reward that was accompanied with a special pressed penny.  Hanna’s award was for being the “Newest member of TEC News in 2013”.

TEC Editors Award 2013

Hanna’s special penny had a carousel horse on it and the Editor’s Award for TEC 2013.  I can only imagine that there aren’t too many of these coins out in circulation so this is a really unique gift.

TEC Award David

My award was for Writing articles for TEC News in 2013 and 2014.  One of the articles I wrote was about a trip my wife and I had taken when my wife was pregnant with Hanna.  Our doctor’s had asked if we had planned our Babymoon which is like a honeymoon only you go on a trip before the baby is born.  Who knew.  We visited Lake George in upstate New York and of course there were numerous penny machines there so I wrote about the experience and TEC graciously printed it in one of the newsletters.  It’s really a great experience to share your penny squashing adventures with others who are interested in the hobby.  Those first few articles I wrote for TEC are really what started me on this Blog adventure.

Editors Award 2014

The coins I received included the same Editor’s Award for 2013 that Hanna did, but I also received the 2014 design.  Even through I’ve been a member of TEC for a handful of years I’m still always surprised at the things they do for their members.  Any time I’m at a penny machine and see someone who looks interested I make sure to have extra TEC membership application on hand and try to share the knowledge with whomever I can.  If you aren’t already a member please go and visit and check it out.  The website has lots of information available for free without being a member, but there are a lot of perks to the membership.

I’m not sure if anyone from TEC reads these posts but just in case Thank you for these little tokens of appreciation.  Hanna and I really enjoyed them and have them hung up on our wall for all to see.  These weren’t necessary but will be treasured.  Thank you again for everything you do and keep up the good work on spreading the news about our hobby!

Philadelphia Zoo – Philadelphia PA

My daughter is getting to the age where she just absolutely loves animals.  Any chance she gets she’s trying to pet something, or calls out when she sees an animal on TV.  Now being animals lovers ourselves my wife and I obviously want to encourage this so we decided to take a trip over the Delaware River into Pennsylvania to check out the nearby Philadelphia Zoo.

philly zoo sign

The Philadelphia Zoo is very proud to be “America’s First Zoo” and there are lots of signs around letting everyone know.  They have recently done some renovations to the surrounding area and even added a parking garage which makes visiting a whole lot easier than it used to be.

Our primary reason for the trip was so Hanna could spend some time enjoying all the animals, but an added bonus is the zoo has quite a few penny machines.  Well…I should say used to have quite a few.  We go to visit the zoo at least once a year, and the machines here have been the same for the last few years but are usually moved around to different locations which still makes finding them fun.  This trip however I could only find one machine.  The designs hadn’t changed but the location did, this year it was located across from Big Cat Falls at the Trading Post Gift Shop.

PA - Philly Zoo 01

The machine had seen better days and was a little hard to use.  The designs came out okay but as you can see from the below picture there were a lot of rogue quarters in the bottom of the machine.

PA - Philly Zoo 01a

After a little elbow grease I was able to press the 4 designs.  But was thinking the whole time that this maybe the last time I get to us it.

PA - Philly Zoo 01 Pennies

Just like any zoo the penny designs were of different animals.  The designs included: A Baboon, Tiger, Alligator, and Cobra.  You can see the coins did press with a little bit of a tail on them, but I find this is pretty standard for this style of machine.

We enjoyed the rest of the day at the zoo, and Hanna loved the Kids ZooU where she got to pet some goats, and a pony.  She kept asking for Elephants but amazingly they didn’t have any this time.  By the time we were done walking the zoo everyone was tired and ready to head home.

I’m holding out hope that the penny machines were gone so they could update the designs.  But who knows.  I’m planning to take a trip back later in the summer and hopefully I’ll have some good news to share at that time.  Until then there is one machine here if your interested, but like the Elephants it may be gone before you know it.

2015 Disneyland Nickels – Anaheim California

With my family trip to Florida earlier this year I haven’t been paying too much attention to what was getting ready to happen at Disneyland in California.  But now that my trip is over, and all my newly acquired coins have been catalogued and stored for safe keeping I was finally able to start focusing on Disneyland.  Each year for the past few years they have also released special coins designs with the current year listed which I really love.  It makes for a great sub-category collection to try to acquire.  These coins were first put on stage back in April but I only recently was able to get a set from a good friend who lives near Anaheim.

DL - Main Street Opera 2015 Nickels

There are three designs and they are actually pressed on nickels which is pretty unique.  The designs include: Mickey & Minnie sitting together, Mickey & Minnie kissing, and Mickey & Minnie hugging.  All three designs include the 2015 year.

Now as exciting as these new coins are for those of you that are living under a rock 2015 is Disneyland’s 60th anniversary which is their Diamond Celebration.  There are all sorts of great things going on at the park and most exciting for me and other pressed coin collectors is that they announced there would be 60 (yes 60!) specially designs press coins only available for a limited time.  I believe there are different stages of these designs being released and I have already been told that most of the first sets have been acquired for my collection.  Hopefully they should be arriving this week and as soon as I have them I will post all about them.  60 new coins in one year is really cool and I can’t wait to get my hands on them.