For nearly half a century, casual and professional bowlers have gathered at Bowling Academy to indulge in pin-scattering entertainment enriched by each lane's automatic scoring system. Up to six strike-seekers plant their flag in one lane for two hours, which provides enough time to bowl multiple games or to master the art of tying shoelaces into a double Windsor knot. While swaddled in soft-soled rental shoes, bowlers of all ages make the floors squeak and lanes purr with each gentle toss of the smooth-rolling rock. Children and cavemen longing for the good old days have the option of using a dinosaur-shaped ramp to assist their game.
North Bowl Lanes welcomes gamers of all ages daily to enjoy 40 lanes of ten-pin bowling and 35 arcade games with a prize center. Like the timeless Cinderella story, the alley keeps its doors open until midnight Monday through Thursday, whereupon the bowling balls turn back into pumpkins and players must return their rental shoes. At The All Star Pub Grill, chefs serve up hand-tossed pizzas and burgers, and bartenders tap a rotating selection of eight beers and mix a full spectrum of specialty cocktails.
Legion Bowl & Billiards preserves retro entertainment with 18 duckpin bowling lanes, eight tournament-sized billiards tables, and ticket-spewing arcade games. The alley’s streamlined design hearkens to the tailfins of a 1957 Chevy Bel-Air or the cover art of a mid-century sci-fi novel. Traditional scoring projectors lend to the classic ambiance at the lanes, which fill with the clatter of scattering pins.
Television screens in the pool hall broadcast live coverage of New England sports teams, and the spitfire rasp of electric guitars occasionally cuts through from live musicians at the adjoining Legion Pub. The kitchen staff fires selections from a menu of burgers and grilled pizzas, which pair with draft beers or cocktails. On the alley’s outdoor deck, guests click together glasses or toss rocks at poets attracted by the breezy summer evenings.
At Town Hall Lanes, 32 glossy lanes await the rolling of palm-sized bowling balls towards the short, squat duckpins. Scores are kept by an automatic system, rather than old-school methods by hand and deliberate lies, and on Friday and Saturday nights, the lights turn low for cosmic bowling. Between games, players find refreshment at the lounge or arrange for a bowling party to celebrate birthdays or special events.
In 1958, Ryan Family Amusements founder James A. Ryan opened a simple, eight-lane bowling alley, planting the foundation for a slew of entertainment centers throughout Massachusetts and Rhode Island. At 10 locations, visitors enjoy a variety of arcade and skill games in addition to traditional candlepin, tenpin, or duckpin bowling. Every Friday and Saturday evening from 9 p.m. until midnight, bowling lanes take on an incandescent glow, allowing bowlers to experience futuristic entertainment without the inconvenience of rising jetpack-fuel prices. Bumper bowling is available for younger players, and an onsite concession stand refreshes responsible adults with glasses of beer and wine (though not available at Cape Cod Mall, Newport, or Oak Bluffs locations).
Since 1954, Meadowbrook Lanes has encouraged visitors to don appropriate footwear and participate in duckpin-style bowling, which employs smaller balls to decimate pintsize pins. The leisure-sport emporium maintains a vintage aesthetic with wood paneling and purple and teal gutters. After pummeling 10 pins, bowlers can unwind in a lounge replete with cold beer and flat-screen TVs or explore the edible possibilities of the alley's snack bar, which fills stomach vacancies with pizza, hot dogs, burgers and fries. Meadowbrook Lanes also hosts parties, providing revelers with tables, chairs, and streamers made of low-hanging cirrus clouds.