Juneau Bowling Center up and running

Local lanes are open for business for first time in six months

Posted: Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The cars and bowlers have started to filter into the Juneau Bowling Center on West Willoughby Avenue.

The 10-lane center opened its doors under new ownership on Nov. 7 after a six-month hiatus. According to manager Jeff Jones, people are flocking back to the reopened bowling lanes.

"We've had a great response," Jones said. "Especially in the last couple weeks with the weather. I don't like rain, but there are times that I hope for it."

The bowling leagues are into their third week of play. Most of them are holdovers from last year, Jones said. The lanes, formerly the Channel Bowl, has hosted leagues since its inception in 1959.

Jones said that two of the leagues are filled, but the center is searching for new and interested participants. The cost of joining a league is $15 per week.

"Almost all the leagues have openings," Jones said. "We have a sign-up sheet at the desk where they can sign up. ... It's fairly inexpensive and it's an indoor sport."

In addition to the leagues, the bowling center hosts "cosmic bowling" on Saturday nights from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m.

Cosmic bowling features black-lights and music. Jones said the center has been averaging about 40 kids per Saturday night.

"We've done it the last couple of weeks," Jones said. "It was a little unorganized, but we're still getting into the swing of what the kids want to do. When I was that age I was in bed, but they want to be out past 10."

For those looking to play, the cost is $4 for adults per game and $2 for children under 18. The center charges $1.50 for rental shoes.

Jones said he hopes to have a formal grand opening in December. Right now he's trying to get the word out that bowling is back in Juneau.

"It's amazing the number of people that don't know it's open, even my neighbors who haven't seen me in a month because I'm living here," Jones said. "They said, 'Where have you been?' and I said, 'At the center because it's open.'"

The center is open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday-Friday. The lanes are open until 1 a.m. on Saturdays and 10 p.m. on Sundays.

• Tim Nichols, sports editor, can be reached at sports@juneauempire.com

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