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Young Star Of Viral Web Video Visits San Francisco

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Caine Monroy

Caine Monroy, star of viral YouTube video, “Caine’s Arcade.” (Photo via YouTube)

BobButler_KCBS_0001r2 Bob Butler
Bob grew up as a Navy brat, living in Cambridge, Long Beach,...
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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – A 9-year-old East Los Angeles boy has become an online sensation after a video about his homemade arcade went viral.

Caine Monroy visited the Exploratorium in San Francisco on Saturday as his arcade was featured in an exhibition.

Caine’s father George said his son always had a love for arcades, stopping when they would pass them by. Caine would go to work with his dad at Smart Parts Auto and used the old cardboard boxes to build his own arcade games.

KCBS’ Bob Butler Reports:

“I started with a little basketball hoop that I got at Shakey’s Pizza,” he said. “And they got bigger and bigger.”

Filmmaker Nirvan Mullick shot the video that has made the 9-year-old a star. He discovered the cardboard arcade while stopping in for a door handle for his car. He said he was intrigued and really got a sense of Caine’s tremendous work ethic.

“He’s got lines of customers. He’s got people coming up everyday, showing up at 6 a.m. even when he’s at school,” said Mullick. “On the weekends they’re there. I’m sure there are people showing up down in L.A. right now and we’re up in San Francisco. He’s got a line out the door that hasn’t slowed down.”

The 11 minute film has been viewed more than 2.5 million times on YouTube since being uploaded on April 9.

While at the Exploratorium, many of Caine’s fans got a chance to test out the games that he has created. “The best part is that we’re here playing my arcade,” Caine said as crowds waited in line for their chance.

There were plenty of young girls in the crowd with some calling Caine “their Justin Bieber.”

Mullick said that Caine has a bright future and along with his arcade, he plays on his school’s basketball team and enjoys math. When asked about what he wants to do when he grows up, he gave the obvious answer “make games.”

A scholarship fund has been set up with the initial goal of helping to raise $25,000 to help Caine with his education. The first day the short film was posted, over $60,000 was raised and a week later, the Goldhirsh Foundation started the Caine’s Arcade Foundation, a matching dollar-to-dollar seed funding grant of $250,000 to help more innovative kids.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed)

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