Ossining Fifth-Grader’s Homemade Arcade Is a Way to Have Fun, Help Others 

Max Lazarowitz holds up a bowl with raffle tickets in it for his friend to choose a winner.

For fifth-grader Max Lazarowitz, caring about and helping others is important – and so is having fun.  

Since the summer of 2016, he has combined his interest in supporting people in need with his love of using recycled materials to create arcade games that raise money for causesHe has donated thousands of dollars in proceeds to a local hospital, to the Ossining School District for toys and recess equipment, and to local families to help them fulfill their holiday wish lists. This year, he set up Max’s Arcade at Roosevelt School in Ossining on November 22, inviting children and adults to play all the games they wanted for $5.   

“I feel really excited because this might be the most people who have ever shown up,” said Lazarowitz, who wore a multicolored bowtie, a black beanie and a T-shirt with his Max’s Arcade logo and motto: Little Kids Dreaming Big on the front, and Max the Maker on the back. 

He made the games out of cardboard boxes, old game pieces, recycled containers, tape and other found objects. Lazarowitz was inspired by Caine Monroy, a Los Angeles boy who created games out of recycled cardboard in his father’s auto repair shop. 

Fifth-grader Violet Miser enjoyed pinball, air hockey and the slingshot and frog games. “I think that it’s nice to support our town and his fundraisers, and I like all the creative games he made up,” she said.

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About the Author: Evelyn Mertens