If not for the occasional clatter of pins, Bowlmor Lanes' bright and modern decor and its full-service dining room could be mistaken for a lively nightclub. The sleek establishment’s gleaming lanes exude a glamorous charm not often found in bowling alleys. Adding to the ambience is a high-end sports bar and glow-in-the-dark lighting that illuminates each bowling pin.
Bel Mateo Bowl, home to 24 newly-installed Murrey synthetic alleys, fully automatic scoring, brilliant LCD monitors, and automated bumper bowling, provides family-friendly pin pulverizing seven days a week. Black-lit lanes illuminate bowling balls as they travel down the center's slick alleys during Planet Bowl, held each Friday and Saturday evening and fueled by colorful lights, upbeat tunes, and gravity. In addition to hosting leagues and bowling camps for kids, the colorful bowling center stocks a snack bar and serves drinks at a cocktail lounge punctuated by big-screen TVs. The alley's arcade room, complete with glowing air-hockey table, driving games, and pinball, hosts gaming kids and inner children alike, and karaoke on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday encourages lively covers of popular tunes and somber odes to fallen bowling pins.
Manor Bowl's 30 lanes have hosted rousing displays of tenpin pyrotechnics for half a century. Seven days a week, the alley's 60-foot lanes beckon pairs to slip into supportive, nonslippery bowling shoes for two rounds of hurling globes like a Greek god hurling bolts of good vibes. Overhead scoring units let carousers keep an eye on the competition while traipsing to the bar for a draft beer, and bumper bowling caters to out-of-shape balls afraid of getting their love handles stuck in the gutter.
Serra Bowl provides pin hunters with a comfortable, state-of-the-art environment in which to ply their strike-seeking skills. Take advantage of bowling’s distinctively stealthy footwear to sneak up on the flocks of unsuspecting game roosting on the alley’s 44 gleaming lanes—each of which can be outfitted with bumpers, the bowler’s version of a laser scope. A high-tech Qubica scoring system is available to track the pin count and vindicate the view that math skills have no real-world applications, and a friendly staff is on-hand to help with the equipment, explain bowling’s rules, and settle arguments over which of the Wright brothers was taller. Exhausted orb hurlers can replenish their strength at the alley’s snack bar or fully stocked on-site cocktail lounge, or they can opt to give their brains a much-needed break from the complexities of the game with some therapeutic button pushing in the game room. Serra Bowl is open until 2 a.m. or later seven nights a week, and around the clock on Saturdays, giving werewolves a wholesome alternative to their traditional nocturnal activity—drag racing.
All across California, Western Bowling Proprietors Association sends pins scattering at a network of bowling alleys, each with its own personality. In addition to open bowl on automatically scored lanes, many locations host special events that heighten the experience with enhancements such as vibrant lights, lively music, and laser systems that do double duty protecting the alleys' diamond collections. The alleys also house refreshment facilities, pro shops, and diversions that range from arcade games to billiards.
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