'Pokemon Go': 10 Strangest Pokestop Locations - Rolling Stone
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‘Pokemon Go’: 10 Strangest Pokestop Locations

From graveyards to Holocaust memorials, Pokemon are showing up in inappropriate spots

By now, you’ve heard about Pokémon Go, the long-promised "augmented-reality game" that instantly became one of the biggest mobile games of all time and a pop culture phenomenon. It’s only been available in the United States for a week, and its audience is currently estimated to be the same size as Twitter – which was launched 10 years ago.

According to SimilarWeb, the average time per day spent on Pokémon Go is a whopping 43 minutes. But as people roam the landscape on the prowl for Pikachu and other Pokemon, there’s been quite a few stories about odd Pokestop locations, including graveyards, hospital delivery rooms and Holocaust memorials. Here, we take a look at some of the weirdest spots that have raised eyebrows and enraged skeptics so far.

Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App, The Pentagon

The Pentagon, home to Department of Defense, is also location of a Gym, or a Pokéstop where you battle Pokémon you've collected.


The Pentagon

As one clever D.C.-based Pokémon Go player pointed out on Reddit, the famously secretive home to the Department of Defense is also home to a Gym, or a Pokéstop where you battle the Pokémon you've collected. However, it's probably one of the harder ones to access – touring the Pentagon is an ordeal that has to be booked at least two weeks in advance, and, unfortunately, doesn't allow the use of cell phones.

The White House, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App

The Secret Service is probably not too excited about the Pokéstop Gym that's been established in the White House.

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The White House

The Secret Service is probably not too excited about the Pokéstop Gym that's been established in the POTUS home, despite it being run by a Pidgot – a Pokémon that looks an awful lot like a bald eagle – named "Merica." And while many people online joked that Barak Obama was the originator of the Gym, it might actually be one of his staffers; like the Pentagon, you have to keep your phone in your pocket during a tour.

Holocaust Memorial Museum, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App

One D.C. landmark that was decidedly not on board with being a Pokéspot was the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

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United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

One D.C. landmark that was decidedly not on board with being a Pokéspot was the Holocaust Museum, which publicly issued a statement saying that playing a game where you trap creatures and battle them "in a memorial dedicated to the victims of Nazism is extremely inappropriate." Worse yet, there were three Pokéspots in the building, which game developer Niantic has been asked to remove.

Arlington Cemetery, Virginia, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App

Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia was not amused to have Pokestops located among gravestones.

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Arlington National Cemetery

While cemeteries across the country have been turned into Gyms and other Pokéstops, one in particular, Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, was not amused. "We do not consider playing 'Pokemon Go' to be appropriate decorum on the grounds of ANC," officials tweeted, adding that people should please refrain from such disrespectful activities while on the military's hallowed ground. But it didn't do much to deter players. "Where else am I gonna get Ghastly?" replied one user. "All they have is magikarp sadly," tweeted another. "Not worth it."

Delivery Rooms, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App

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Hospital Delivery Rooms

One early player posed an image of his wife in a hospital bed, being prepared for a C-section, with the caption, "When your wife is about to have a baby and a Pokémon shows up and you have to low-key catch it…" But, as he later told BuzzFeed, his wife was in on the joke. "As soon as it popped up, I was like, Oh my gosh, there's a Pidgey sitting on your bed!" he said. "So, I screenshotted it, then caught it and showed it to her." According to the interview, she wasn't mad at all. "She just kind of laughed at it," he said. "It was primarily an eye roll once she realized what I was doing."

Westboro Baptist Church, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App

Westboro Baptist Church's Kansas City headquarters became a Pokéstop ruled by a Jigglypuff.

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Westboro Baptist Church Headquarters

The Westboro Baptist Church, known around the world for its hatred of the LGBT community, was not pleased to find that someone had made their Kansas City headquarters a Pokéstop, especially one ruled by a Jigglypuff – a Pokémon that resembles a shock of cotton candy – nicknamed "LoveIsLove." But instead claiming hallowed ground, as so many other religious organizations did, they decided to fight back in the game, creating a Pokémon named after their famously offensive and unsophisticated protest signage. They even tweeted a picture of a Jigglypuff as a protester, holding signs reading "Repent or Parish," an act so ludicrous that it really makes you wonder if they're trolling themselves.

Church of Scientology, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App


Church of Scientology

Once a mysterious and powerful force, the Church of Scientology has experienced somewhat of a fall from grace over the past several years, from investigative books and documentaries to a damning new tell-all from the leader's 80-year-old father. So one Canadian player was surprised to find one of their buildings appear as a suggested Pokéstops. "The Church of Scientology has finally proven its usefulness," he tweeted.

9/11 Memorial Museum, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App

The 9/11 Memorial in Lower Manhattan is the site of a Pokemon named Slowpoke.

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9/11 Memorial

The 9/11 Memorial in Lower Manhattan already weathered a scandal when it opened in 2014 because of its poorly thought out gift shop offerings, so it's really no stranger to controversy. But that was before it became home to a slew of Pokémon to augment the otherwise somber reality of the memorial and reflecting pools, including a pink hippopotamus named Slowpoke. "Go to the Bronx Zoo if you want to play [games]," a 61-year-old retired EMS worker visiting the memorial told Time. "There are just some things you don't do."

Abortion Memorial, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App

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Abortion Memorials

There are nearly 600 grave sites and memorials to uncompleted pregnancies in America, and according to Gizmodo, a "alarming number" of those are also places to score free stuff in Pokémon Go.

Auschwitz, Pokemon Go, 10, Worst, Places, Pokestops, App

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Auschwitz Memorial

Much like the officials at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., those in charge of the Auschwitz Memorial in Poland – the preserved site of one of the most brutal concentration camps employed during World War II, where over a million Jews and other victims of the Nazis lost their lives – have kindly asked that tourists refrain from catching Pokémon while on the grounds. It's not the first time that people have inappropriately used social media apps at the memorial – Newt Gingrich tweeted from a gas chamber in 2009, and later posed for photos smiling in front of the gate – but perhaps we can all set a very low bar and show that we have more tact than Newt by not hunting for Pikachus while visiting one of the most harrowing sites of modern genocide.

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