A vintage photo of Mallwitz’s Island Lanes, presumably from the 1980s, shows a much different alley than the one that stands today. Its patrons are dressed and coiffed for the times, bright yellows and reds flash across the walls, and strikes and spares are scrawled by hand. A modern-day snapshot illustrates the transformation that has occurred since the center's 1980 opening: 24 lanes feature computerized scoring systems and freshly oiled surfaces that glisten in the muted glow of black lights like a newborn’s head after his first waxing. Other contemporary touches include a full bar, complete with a food menu headlined by popular wings.
As the home of the TSN Classic Bowl Championship, Classic Bowl sees its share of high-stakes bowling. Even during recreational matches, the alley’s shimmering lights reflect the competitive glint in bowlers’ eyes as they stare out at the polished surfaces of 60 lanes that span 70,000 square feet. The echoes of crashing pins resonate throughout this expansive space seven days a week and reach their zenith during cosmic bowling on weekends, when party lights set matches aglow and pins sway to the beats of popular tunes spun by a live DJ. In between games, recharge with food and drinks at a full-service bar or sharpen hand-eye rapport during button-smashing melees in the arcade. Experts at the on-site pro shop equip bowlers with gear, offer helpful advice for improving scores, and feed energy bars to the hamsters that thanklessly propel balls toward their targets.
Bowling balls trundle down Splitsville's 34 slick lanes as touchscreen scoring tracks each player's strikes and splits. At this interactive entertainment mecca, computer-controlled bumpers emerge automatically whenever players requesting them step up to bowl. Friday and Saturday night cosmic bowling sessions enhance frames with black lights and drop-down screens. More than 20 plasma screen televisions and five projectors over the lane enthrall players awaiting their turn. Further overhead, Splitville's lounge, The Loft, treats guests to two stonewalled fireplaces and an entertainment stage as they munch on the kitchen menu's pub eats. Splitsville also pits drivers against each other in a bumper car arena, lures gamers to more than 55 redemption and video games in the arcade, and baits pool sharks at the billiards table by dangling chum from cues.
Kenmore Lanes is a safe haven for pin-pummeling patrons as they relish strikes and avert gutter balls on the stable of slick lanes. Participants can practice their rolling skills during open-bowl sessions or within the intergalactic realm of Friday and Saturday night moonlight bowling, where the lanes remain open until 2:30 a.m. and are entirely illumined by glowing blocks of radioactive cheese. Tykes celebrating their birthdays can launch orbs alongside friends during 90-minute party sessions, which include pizza, soda, and a gift for the guest of honor. A pro shop supplies attendees with custom-fit balls, bags, and shoes, and 10-week leagues encourage team camaraderie and passive aggressive celebrations after every strike. Kenmore Lanes' restaurant reenergizes postgame rollers with abundant eats, and visitors craving more competition can chalk up cues at the pool table or take on classic games at the arcade such as skee-ball.
At Parkway Lanes, bowlers hurl balls down 40 lanes, reducing triangular formations to a pile of plastic rubble and tallying up victories with automatic scoring systems rather than sacks of beans. The lanes flare to life on Rock 'N Bowl nights, and a game room with pool tables buzzes with competition every night of the week. After games and between frames, athletes can replenish energy reserves with food and drinks doled out on site.