Across nearly three-fourths of the United States, AMF Bowling Co. reverberates year-round as families, friends, and competitors send bowling balls in search of upright pins careening down slick lanes. The company first established itself as an industry leader in 1946, the same year the sport introduced automated pinspotters.
Today, more than 20 million bowlers annually make AMF their battleground for wars against pins. As the largest owner and and operator of bowling centers in the US, AMF locations offer high-tech scoring technology, a classic design, and a menu stocked with American-inspired classics such as wings, pizzas, burgers, and beer.
Yorktown Lanes boasts 40 lanes, each of which is equipped with automatic scoring systems. Just beyond the lanes' edge, a lineup of colorful vinyl chairs adds a touch of vintage class. And inside the newly renovated bar onsite, bartenders liberally pour spirits, draft brews, and other fine beverages. The alley also hosts birthday bowling parties in one of two private rooms, including a banquet hall that can host wedding receptions or graduate seminars on the difference between duckpins and regular bowling pins.
At Fairview Lanes, balls thunder toward targets along 20 contemporary lanes, buffeting between bumpers or freewheeling by gutters during open bowling hours. At MoonRock bowling, pulsing music and radiance from lasers, disco balls, and black lights slice through darkness like the DJ's night vision goggles. On Friday and Saturday nights the music borders on edgy, but special glow bowling hours held during the day on Saturday and Sunday feature family-friendly music and videos. Café 220 stokes athleticism with fuel in the form of beer-battered cheese fries and fried pickle spears, and Mac's Pro Shop supplies essential bowling gear. The alley also hosts leagues for all ages and parties for any occasion.
At each of its Cleveland-area locations, Freeway Lanes allows bowlers to hone gutter-hugging curves. In addition to traditional, tenpin lanes, the alleys host indoor bocce ball courts and pool tables for players tired of breaking cues on 16-pound balls. Their expansive facilities also feature modern bowling amenities along with HD television screens and full-service restaurants. League opportunities are available for children, adults, and seniors and live bands frequent the alleys, filling the air with original melodies and providing just enough bass to knock down wobbling pins.
CoolCleveland.com credits new owners Joe Pavlick, his wife, Emily Pavlick, his sister-in-law, Kelly Flamos, and Kelly's husband, Colin McEwen, with restoring Mahall's 20 Lanes to its former glory. All Ohio natives, they swooped in and resurrected the once flourishing alley with a fresh infusion of flair. In addition to an expanse of 20 lanes that sparkle between exposed-brick walls, they also refurbished two bars, a dining area, a stage for musical acts with "Mahall's" emblazoned in the background, and pool tables. Locals crowd around tables in the restaurant, chugging brews and chowing down on elote, a grilled ear of corn rubbed with spices. The walls flaunt a mural obscured for years by wallpaper, which Joe and Kelly uncovered during the restoration process. In the lanes, the old-timey method of manual scoring helps the alley maintain its vintage aura and makes automatic counters obsolete.
For 14 years, families and friends have created memories while enjoying bowling, video games, food, and beverages at Southgate Lanes. Inside the bowling and entertainment center, guests partake in friendly competition on one of 40 lanes while munching on hot snacks from the full-service bar. Southgate also boasts a game area, enticing guests to take a break from their strikes and spares to try their hand at a game of pool, sharpen their hand-eye coordination with pinball, or prepare for the coming alien invasion on a video game. Other bowling alley attractions include leagues, cosmic bowling, scheduled camps and clinics, and an on-site pro shop.