Strike! (anytime)

January 23, 2008

After M. saw a bowling ball on a cartoon and asked what it was, we decided we needed to supplement his education with a field trip. We never quite got around to it until last week, when a letter arrived, inviting M. to a bowling birthday party in two weeks’ time. It was all the prompting we needed to head out to the nearest lanes, which happens to be the Flamingo Bowl, the new bowling alley/nightclub downtown.

Had I not called ahead and had a very warm conversation with a staff member about the fun of bowling with kids, I might have given too much credence to the “nightclub” part. And on weekend nights, it is definitely a lounge scene. But having been forewarned to avoid Fridays and Saturdays (when reservations are a must), we showed up at noon on a Sunday and found the red carpet rolled out for families. The 11s, the smallest shoes they have, were a little big for M., but he forgot about that soon enough in the excitement of hauling his bright blue 6-pound ball over to lane 7. S. had no idea what was going on, but as soon as we took his shoes off, he made himself at home on the couches and pretty much went with the flow for the next couple of hours.

Aside from the food, bowling with kids is much cheaper than bowling with adults because it takes FOREVER for the game to finish. In 90 minutes we bowled two games, at a cost of $3 per game, plus $3 shoe rental for two adults and $1.50 for the kid. Not bad at all.

By the time we left, most of the lanes were full. Still, most of the bowlers were family groups, and no one seemed to mind that toddlers (ours and others) were “visiting” other lanes occasionally, or that the workers got a little mixed up and programmed bumpers to pop up for some of the adults. bowling

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