PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – It’s becoming one of the most-watched reality shows on TV, “Pawn Stars.”
People are intrigued by the one-of-a-kind items and the one-of-a-kind crew that runs the shop.
Turns out that pawn shop has become a wildly popular tourist destination in Law Vegas, including for Pittsburgh fans.
KDKA’s David Highfield went to check it out.
Inside, he found some interesting items and lots of Pittsburghers – almost where he was tripping over Pittsburghers.
What’s cool about the show is that you get a little history lesson as you watch.
Rick Harrison runs the shop, along with his father and his son “Big Hoss” and his son’s friend “Chumlee.”
And in real life, many people are constantly waiting to get inside – sometimes there’s a line around the block.
“I believe this is the No. 1 tourist destination in Las Vegas,” tour guide Jeff Mason said.
Mason says they get anywhere from 3,000 to 5,000 visitors a day.
KDKA talked to Jack Murray from Monroeville.
“It’s my favorite reality TV show, because it’s the closest thing to real any of them are,” he said.
Kaya Pohl from Fox Chapel was also there.
“This is where all the magic happens, this is the mystique of Pawn Stars,” Pohl said.
The shop is filled with antiques – sometimes historic items.
They say a cigar box from JFK’s desk can be yours for $125,000, or part of a heat shield from a space craft for $450.
They also have a keyboard used by Three Dog Night, a rebuilt 1932 Ford Roadster and for $65,000, a WWII Indian.
“It was originally left-hand throttle, because they throttled with their left hand and they’d fire with their right hand,” Mason said.
Someone brought in antique pins – including one for the Pittsburgh Pirates. The whole set would set you back $4,500. However, they had some Steelers coins for only $15.
There’s even a case of Super Bowl rings. David Highfield tried on a Patriots ring since they didn’t have a Steelers one.
While the stars of the show weren’t there when KDKA visited, there’s plenty of merchandise with their faces on it, from T-shirts, to glasses, to bobble heads. Chumlee seems to be a crowd favorite.
Since the show started, they’ve already expanded the “World Famous” Gold and Silver Pawn Shop and their popularity seems to have no end in sight.
“Their life has completely changed because of this show,” Mason said. “They used to be just guys working in a pawn shop – now they’re celebrities.”
Now, when they’re taping the show, they have restrictions on who can come in, because they’d never be able to get anything done otherwise. But the extras you see in the background are picked out of the actual crowd.
So if you go, you could be in the background on the show, but they’ll make you sign a waiver and instruct you not to walk around staring into the camera.