Saturday, July 26, 2014

Kids Bowl FREE at Bowl-A-Roll Lanes

Select bowling centers and schools around the country are participating in the first ever Kids Bowl Free program. This program is designed by bowling centers to give back to the community and provide a safe, secure, and fun way for kids to spend time this summer.
Children whose age does not exceed a limit by a participating bowling center are eligible to register for 2 free games a day, all summer long, courtesy of the participating bowling centers along with the schools and organizations.

 Bowl-A-Roll Kids Bowl Free Registration Form

What People Are Saying About Our Program

Anxious to get bowling this summer (thanks to Kids Bowl Free and their family pass), but here is my little man a couple of years ago. Thanks "Kids Bowl Free" for a great program!

We love Kids Bowl Free. It provides us with a fun family activity at a great price! My daughters love bowling so this is perfect!

My family and I love to bowl! I had my son's 7th birthday party at our local bowling alley. We had a great time and took lots and lots of pictures!

Monday, July 21, 2014

I Use To Bowl - Where Did All The Bowlers Go

I grew up just a few blocks away from what was once the Showboat Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. One of the main features of the Showboat was its massive bowling alley. Added in 1953, the lanes of the Showboat were amongst the oldest bowling alleys along the PBA tour circuit, but were mostly a fun Friday night for a downtown family that couldn’t afford the gas to make its way to the then-new attractions on The Strip, such as the Stratosphere, Treasure Island, and the Luxor.

To say bowling was a large part of my childhood would be an overstatement; I never participated in any youth leagues and even now can’t bowl much better than a 130. But it was a fun, air-conditioned respite from the boiling city streets and greed-enabled exhibits mostly meant to get our parents to lose money they didn’t have. Before game consoles and apps were making solid attempts to be integrated with every part of your life, socializing in a real place around a real activity was the best way to feel alive. Plus. bowling is a rare entity: a sport that’s fun even if you aren’t much good at it.
So I do shed some metaphorical tears as bowling alleys across the countrybegin to die out, as Business Week reports? It does make a sort of cosmic sense: the kids less fitted for football and basketball could easily get a hand on bowling. But why bother participating in a rewardless sport—one treated more like a drinking game than a physical competition—when you can gather accolades amongst your fellow nerds, playing video games or even building them yourself?

Even as a social atmosphere, bowling alleys and other such local hangouts shy away in comparison to the nearly unlimited social possibilities of the Internet. Why bother meeting at a sporting venue—usually dank and outfitted with a bar full of depressing adults—when you can find your crush on Snapchat, Yo, and Tinder? Plus, your parents never let you go anywhereanyway. Why not just stay home?

The death of bowling alleys is about more than low-level physical activity and nachos. Physical, public spaces themselves are at risk of being felled by the enormity of what can be done in a digital space. Online gaming means you can have as much fun (if not far more) on your couch than a teenage kid ever would at a bowling alley. An Amazon Prime subscription is an agoraphobic’s dream, enabling anyone to have everything from groceries to electronics delivered to your doorstep.

Netflix and online streaming as a whole has been slaying yet another important hangout spot for those of us in flyover country: the movie theater. After Hollywood distributors set digital projection as a standard in 2012,over 1,000 local movie theaters across the country went out of business. Combine that with the dearth of quality original movies in production and the surplus of content available at home (it’s no mistake the “Golden Age” ofTV syncs with a decade of nothing but sequels and reboots), not to mention soaring ticket and concession costs, what’s the point?

When Facebook purchased VR manufacturer Oculus back in March, people were perplexed by what a social network and a immersive gaming console could possibly have in common. “The incredible thing about the technology is that you feel like you're actually present in another place with other people,” Mark Zuckerberg said of the Oculus Rift headset. “Imagine enjoying a court-side seat at a game, studying in a classroom of students and teachers all over the world or consulting with a doctor face-to-face—just by putting on goggles in your home.”

What Zuckerberg is not merely predicting but, in fact, celebrating is a world within our world, wherein all locations will eventually be replaced by digital approximations, with avatars portraying the real bodies of your friends.
Tech companies’ aim, whether they know it or not, is to remove the social factor from much of our lives, and bowling is just one of many fatalities. As our options for media and consumption grow and fracture, all of our options for how we spend our free time are competing against one another. Books, sports, bars, movies, and games are all essentially in the same market for your time.

But as home media becomes cheaper, more abundant and, yes, greater of quality, we are abandoning a former way of life. People wonder why “car culture” continues to dwindle in the U.S.—a country famous for its historic fetishization of the automobile—when the answer is simply there’s no where more interesting to drive than the place where you keep your phone chargers, Xbox, and Chromecast: home.

It’s entirely possible I’m merely being wistful for Friday nights, eating cheese fries and rolling blocks of marble at wooden pins with a family I now mostly communicate with through texting and the occasional Call of Duty match. But there are more reasons than nostalgia to hold on to such low-culture meetups as bowling alleys and movie theaters.

As we continue to not just build new cultures online but distinctly relocate old culture there, we leave behind unique experiences that will become harder and harder to relive.

When we hear that vinyl records are resurging as a music format, it’s easy to chalk it up to hipsterdom or Boomer nostalgia, two forces as potent as they are self-aware. What it really stems from is a distinct nostalgia for holding something. But like a Millennial long-distance relationship, we continue to be wistful for physical aspects while embracing the digital.

Locations may soon be no different. Faster than we can say “Moore’s Law,” the digital sphere of our lives is stealing away places we will one day miss. Our children will stare at us blankly as we talk about bumpers and scorecards and how you never fully realize how heavy twelve pounds is until you have to fling it down a well-oiled wooden lane.

What we’ll be talking about—and what our parents talk about when they talk about vinyl records—is what philosophers call qualia. Defined as the subjective quality of an experience, the immeasurable sensation of being somewhere and doing something, qualia loses its uniqueness—its very subjectivity—the more we trust digital universes to recreate original, real-world settings.

And maybe that is a good thing. Maybe a world that is the same for everyone—or possibly so individualized it’s beyond sharing with others—is what we want. But if we hope to be both social creatures and remain individuals, we need to sustain our physical spaces. The more removed we are from seemingly silly experiences like bowling or going to the movies, the more we are removed from one another.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Fall Leagues Now Forming

It's Not Too Early to Think About Joining A Fall League

League bowling is one of the most popular recreational sports in the United States. If you're not a league bowler, chances are you know one, even if you don't think you do. League bowling has given many hours of joy (and frustration) to people since the inception of the sport, and continues to do so.
There are leagues available for all types of bowlers. If you're one of the best bowlers in the area, there's a league for you. If you don't care about winning at all, there's a league for you. If you and your significant other want an activity you can do together, there are couples leagues for you. On top of all the leagues bowling alleys administer, you can usually set up your own league at your own center. Bowl the way you want with the people you want.
Still not convinced? Here are the top 10 reasons to join a bowling league:

1. The Characters

You won't believe it until you see it. Even then, you might not believe it. League bowling brings out some of the most colorful, interesting, baffling personalities in the world. You have no idea these people are in your community until you join a bowling league. From unbelievably talented bowlers to inexplicably strange humans, you get a cross-section of society you didn't realize existed.

2. Camaraderie

Typically, you'll find the word "camaraderie" thrown around in team sports, particularly hockey. People past their primes play the games so they can relive the locker-room banter and hilarity. Bowling is no different (except it all happens in the stinky bowling alley rather than the stinky locker room). Bowling leagues, especially with your friends (or strangers who will become your friends), are great ways to spend a few hours a week.

3. Fun

Bowling is fun. Whether league bowling or not, it's fun to bowl. Joining a league keeps you accountable to yourself - you're going to bowl at least once a week.

4. Money

Small-time gambling is acceptable in most bowling leagues. Often, half your league fees go toward your bowling and the other half goes toward the prize fund. At the end of the season, you and your team will receive prize money based on where you finish. Individual prizes are usually up for grabs, too. Other ways to win a pittance during league bowling involve card games and strike pots.

5. Fitness

You can get fit by bowling? Common perception and stereotypes would suggest you can't. And if bowling once a week is the only bit of exercise you get, then don't expect a sculpted physique by the end of the season. Still, repeatedly hurling a heavy sphere requires strength and endurance, and you can burn a significant number of calories bowling.

6. Pizza

Counteract the exercise with pizza. Many bowling leagues will help you relive your childhood pizza parties by giving you adult pizza parties. Actually, the pizza detracts from not only the fitness point, but also the money, as the pizza is usually funded by the prize money. For those 2-3 nights a year, though, it tastes great. Never mind you're counteracting the exercise portion while cutting into your prize fund - it's delicious.

7. Television

If bowling isn't enough for you, many bowling alleys have TVs playing whatever most of you want to watch (typically sports). Depending on the time of your league, you can watch entire hockey and baseball games while bowling.

8. USBC Membership

You'll be a part of the United States Bowling Congress, which costs less than $20 a year (and is often hidden in your league fees, so you don't even have to think about it if you don't want to). Membership qualifies you for award magnets (formerly patches) and gives you discounts with various merchants, including hotels and rental cars.

9. Relaxation

Except on the nights during which you're bowling so poorly you find yourself doing anything but relaxing, the sport can give you a nice respite from the work day or work week. Show up, relax, throw a few frames, and have fun.

10. Status

"Yeah. I bowl." You'll be amazed by how many people are impressed when they find out you bowl in a league.