Home to more than 50 bowling leagues, Wickliffe Lanes' synthetic alleyways accommodate sphere hurlers of all skill levels seven days a week, which is one of the many reasons it earned Fox 8's Best Bowling award in 2010. Between frames, bowlers seek nourishment at two full-service bars or at the in-house grill; 12 billiard tables, an arcade, and 20 high-definition TVs also keep minds off high-stakes frames. The smoke-free bowling mecca hosts family-friendly open bowling and provides retractable bumpers, which eliminate gutter balls much like bicycle helmets eliminate bad hair days.
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.
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.
The clatter of pins ripples through Cloverleaf Lanes, which proudly plays host to the longest-running American bowling tournament. But one need not be a pro to fling a ball down these lanes. Ample open bowling times mean that even newbie bowlers get a chance to experiment with bowling grips, whether using three fingers, four fingers, or their feet. Between games, guests can perch on one of the chrome stools at the snack bar or quaff a tasty brew chosen from the lounge's beer menu.
In 1961, Peter Scimone and his wife Rosalie converted a humble patch of farmland into an epicenter for recreation, starting small with only 16 bowling lanes. Over the years, Roseland Lanes—which was named after Rosalie—was enhanced with a café and grill, pizza parlor, and pub all named for Pete. Today their daughter carries on the family tradition, warmly welcoming guests into a modern, 50-lane alley that features a game room, automatic scoring, 36-inch LCD TVs above every lane, and behemoth 47-inch screens scattered intermittently throughout the space. Roseland Lanes acts as home base for leagues and summer camps, and really flares to life during cosmic bowling on weekend and Wednesday evenings, when a DJ from Rock the House Entertainment steals the spotlight playing requested tunes through a 10,000-watt sound system.
When bowlers have exhausted themselves out on the lanes, they invade Papa Pete's Pizza for slices and wings or Pete's Cafe for burgers and ice cream. At Pete's Pub, liquor, beer, and wine quench thirsts and patrons compete for glory or the final seat on city council at the pool table, dartboards, or karaoke mike. Nearby, the Rose Room hosts up to 70 partygoers and the adjacent La Casa Bella Party Center sets the stage for fancy affairs.
CoolCleveland.com credits new owners Joe Pavlick and his sister-in-law, Kelly Flamos, with restoring Mahall's 20 Lanes to its former glory. Kelly, Joe, and Joe's wife, all Ohio natives, 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.
After 25 years as a loyal employee at North Woods Lanes, Mike Trachsel joined forces with his wife, Sandy, to buy the lanes he’d come to love. Together, they work hard to ensure that the place maintains the timeless charm it has cultivated over its 50-year-plus history. The years have not been without modern upgrades, however; these include automatic scoring, flat-screen TVs, and cosmic bowling. The alley also features a snack bar and a pro shop where players can purchase a new ball or a bowling bag.