Ah, the alleys . . . It’s really a sensory experience, you know.
The scent of Aqua Net on a beehive hairdo.
The roar of polyester rubbing against old Naugahyde.
The sight of a cigarette stubbed out on a patty melt.
All this plus the anticipation of placing your feet in shoes
only seven thousand others have worn before you.
-Diane Chambers (Cheers)
Those of you who haven’t set foot in a bowling alley since the 80s probably hold an opinion similar to Diane’s— I know I remember when that was an accurate description of the lanes (and yet I still loved it).
Bowling alleys have come a LONG way since then, and are a great family-friendly way to beat the heat or while away a rainy day this summer. Also, while bowling doesn’t seem like much of a workout… go ahead and bowl two games if you haven’t recently, and tell me the morning after that rolling a heavy ball down a long lane over & over doesn’t work some muscle groups you don’t usually use.
Bowling is another of those great equalizer activities, where the kids can easily be as good or better than their parents so the game can be legitimately competitive and engaging. Bumpers take the pressure off for the young’uns, and I’ve spied a piece of equipment that’s basically a lightweight bowling ball ramp that can be moved to the end of the lane; really littles start their ball at the top and give it a little push for aim and momentum equal to that of the adults. (pictured at right. I’ve no idea what this contraption is called.)
This summer AMF is offering all kids under 16 two free games of bowling per day at over 200 participating locations (shoe rental is NOT included). Local peeps, you’re looking at Price Lanes on Kirkwood Highway or Conchester Lanes in Boothwyn.
That’s two free games, every single day, all summer long, from Memorial Day (May 30th) through Labor Day (Monday, September 5th). Lanes are open until 8:00pm, 7 days a week.
Just go to the AMF Summer Unplugged page to select a participating center and complete a simple registration form. Free game coupons will then be emailed to you every Sunday for the following week. We took part in this last year and it’s dead easy.
If you are a competitive (Tiger?) mom like me, you’ll want to bowl too. Families of registered kids can opt for a sweet add-on deal: a one-time payment of $27.95 buys 2 games per day for 4 adults all summer long (same dates and times.) That’s a really good price. If you get another family to sign up their kids for the free games, you could split the 4 adult deal among the parents, and set up a standing kid/adult playdate all summer long 🙂
We went bowling yesterday morning and the kids had a blast. Can’t wait to go back! This’ll be a great way to keep the kids unplugged and cool on those 100 degree mid-days (I fight to not turn on the A/C, and I won’t do the pool until after 2pm).
Bowling alleys often run deals for families, especially for birthday parties, so you may want to get updates on Facebook or Twitter.
Confession time: my friends and I used to do the “Rock & Bowl” every Saturday night from midnight to 2am and I was a decent bowler, averaging about a 160. Not awesome on a league bowler scale, but one of the best bowlers I know personally.
Maverick signed up for bowling lessons at our local lanes and I am totally itching for some healthy competition. (Cass signed up for lessons too but she’s not as competitive.) Does that make me a bad mom, that I want to bring my kids up to my level so that I can whup their butts guilt-free?
Anyone else really excited about the day their kids become worthy opponents at a sport or game?
What are your plans for beating the heat this summer?
This post is part of a One2One Network campaign and I am eligible for a prize drawing (customized family bowling shirts. I KNOW. BEST PRIZE EVER.)
I was not paid for this post. All opinions stated in the post are my own and I really hope you take advantage of the free bowling promotion in your area! Your kids will thank you.