This was a special trip for me. I felt like Lucy on "I Love Lucy" looking for all those big TV stars.
have been driving by this pawn shop for years without ever really paying attention to it. There are so
many pawn shops in Las Vegas, one shop pretty much looks like another. Once I started watching the TV
show I tried to visualize where it was. I was way off. So on our last visit to Las Vegas, we made a point
to stop and act like a tourist. The shop did not look as large as it does on TV, but we had a great time
just walking through it.
I was disappointed to find out that the main cast of the TV show does not spend a lot of time at the shop anymore. Because of the show's shooting times, the cast usually only comes in to do the filming when someone brings in an item producers/staff feel would be right for the show.
Pawn Stars, an American reality television series, shown on History, is filmed in Las Vegas, Nevada, where it chronicles the daily activities at the World Famous Gold and Silver Pawn Shop. The 24-hour family business opened in 1989 and is operated by patriarch Richard "Old Man" Harrison, his son Rick Harrison, Rick's son Corey "Big Hoss" Harrison, and Corey's childhood friend, Austin "Chumlee" Russell. The series, which became the network's highest rated show, and the No. 2 reality show behind Jersey Shore, debuted on July 26, 2009.
The series depicts the staff's interactions with customers, who bring in a variety of artifacts to sell or pawn and who are shown haggling over the price and discussing its historical background, with narration provided by either the Harrisons or Chumlee. The series follows the interpersonal conflicts among the cast.
The series was originally pitched to HBO, though the network preferred the series to have been a Taxicab Confessions-style series taking place at the Gold and Silver's night window. The format eventually evolved into the now-familiar family-oriented motif used on the series. History Channel picked up the series, which was initially titled Pawning History, before a staffer suggested that Pawn Stars would fit better with the locale (imagine that). The network concurred, believing that name to be more pleasing and easily remembered. The story-line was adjusted in order to bring it in line with the network's brand, which included the on-camera experts appraising the items brought into the Gold and Silver, without discouraging the interpersonal conflicts among the show's stars.
The series is filmed on location at the World Famous Gold and Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas, Nevada. Although jewelry is the most commonly pawned item at the Gold and Silver Pawn Shop, most of the customers featured in episodes bring in a variety of vintage or antique items to the store, which has over 12,000 items in its inventory (about half of which are typically held on pawn).
Each episode consists of segments devoted to approximately five or six of these items, in which one of the staff members, usually Rick Harrison, his son Corey, or Harrison's father Richard (known as the "Old Man"), explains the history behind the object. When the buyer is unable to evaluate an object, they consult with a knowledgeable expert who can evaluate it to determine its authenticity and potential value, and in the case of items needing repair, the cost of restoration or preparing the item for sale.
Whoever is evaluating the object goes over the potential value with the customer, including the expert's opinion, if one is given, often interspersed with an interview in which he explains the basis of his decision to the viewer. A price tag graphic at the bottom corner of the screen provides the ever-changing dollar amount as the two haggle over the item's price. On occasion, Rick will purchase items in need of restoration before determining its restoration costs, thus taking a risk on such costs.
Interpersonal narratives focusing on the relationship and conflicts among Rick, Corey, the Old Man, and Corey's childhood friend, Austin "Chumlee" Russell, who also works at the shop, also comprise episode plots. These usually pertain to arguments over the running of the shop, the elder Harrisons questioning Corey's judgment, and aspersions cast on Chumlee's intelligence and competence. Before the second commercial break, a multiple choice trivia question related to the shop and its inventory, the cast members or one of the featured items is shown, with the answer provided after the break; beginning with the Season 8 episode "A Very Vegas Christmas", a trivia question is asked at every commercial break.
Gold and Silver Pawn Shop
713 S Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV 8910