Entertainment

Move over Boardwalk and Park Place. New board game FRESNO-OPOLY highlights Fresno

FRESNO-OPOLY, a new Monopoly board game that “celebrates the heart of California’s Central Valley,” has hit the shelves at one Wal Mart in town. And they’re selling fast in what’s suddenly become the hottest Christmas gift for someone from Fresno.
FRESNO-OPOLY, a new Monopoly board game that “celebrates the heart of California’s Central Valley,” has hit the shelves at one Wal Mart in town. And they’re selling fast in what’s suddenly become the hottest Christmas gift for someone from Fresno. The Fresno Bee

Ready to play Monopoly, but in Fresno style?

FRESNO-OPOLY, a new Monopoly board game that “celebrates the heart of California’s Central Valley,” has hit the shelves at one Walmart in town.

And they’re selling fast in what’s suddenly become the hottest Christmas gift to give someone from Fresno.

The concept and rules of FRESNO-OPOLY are the same as the traditional Hasbro Monopoly game.

But instead of properties like Boardwalk and Park Place and Reading Railroad, FRESNO-OPOLY uses names like Dog House Grill, River Park and Woodward Park.

Within nine hours of the Super Walmart at Ashlan and Blackstone avenues posting a photo of FRESNO-OPOLY on its Facebook page on Thursday, the store sold more than 75 board games. One customer purchased nine board games.

As of Friday afternoon, all 151 of the store’s FRESNO-OPOLY games were sold out. The store was selling the board game for $19.98.

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FRESNO-OPOLY, a new Monopoly board game that Fresno centric, highlights landmarks around town and the central San Joaquin Valley. The board game was selling for $19.98 the Walmart at the Ashlan and Blackstone location. But the store sold out of its first 150 copies through the first two days. Bryant-Jon Anteola The Fresno Bee

Walmart customer service manager Maria Mendoza said the store likely will order more FRESNO-OPOLY games, though it’s unclear when the next shipment will arrive. Managers at other Walmarts around town said they never had the board game in stock and weren’t sure if they ever would.

“I don’t think anyone saw this coming,” Mendoza said. “Everyone seems to keep asking about them.”

The Fresno-centric board game was made by an Ohio-based company called “Late for the Sky,” which has made specific city- and college-based Monopoly games since 1984.

Its first game was MIAMIOPOLY, based on Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.

And now, they’ve done 80-plus customized Monopoly games, even the likes of COMPTON-OPOLY and MODESTO-OPOLY.

Those who know Fresno’s geography or take pride being from here can appreciate FRESNO-OPOLY. Popular places like the Fresno Chaffee Zoo get highlighted, but so do more low-key places such as the Mural District and Oso de Oro Park.

Even the “Chance” and “Community Chest” cards, which in this version are called “Big Fun” and “Contingency” cards, give shout-outs to Fresno.

Like “You placed first at The Big Fresno Fair Home arts Exhibit. Collect $20.”

“Seeing your hometown as a board game, that’s pretty awesome,” said Jose Castillo, who bought two FRESNO-OPOLY games late Thursday night. “Makes me proud to be from Fresno.”

Bryant-Jon Anteola: 559-441-6362, @Banteola_TheBee
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