Roman philosopher Seneca said that “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end.”
Would Douglas County bowlers be thinking about such things? Probably not, but then their ‘new beginning’ has already arrived in the form of new bowling venue in Southern Lanes.
Southern Lanes, a new bowling alley, has opened off Fairburn Road at 3931 Longview Drive in the old Your Bowling Center location that closed last year. For former clientele and everyone else, it’s time to grab the bowling shoes and head to Southern Lanes, which is already renovated and open for business.
According to their Facebook page, Southern Lanes opened on July 13 and their official grand opening is planned for Aug. 8.
Deborah Holland, co-owner, who spoke by phone, said that she and Southern Lanes LLC co-owners Randy Hicks and Brandon Ledbetter are all bowlers themselves and dedicated to making the sport available to other avid bowlers, but families are welcome too.
“We will have some amusement games [for the kids], but we want the bowling experience to be the primary experience here,” Holland said.
Holland said that since the close of Your Bowling Center, a big percentage of those bowlers just found another place to go bowl, but were back when Southern Lanes opened-up on July 13.
“You become a family when you bowl; it was a big homecoming and they were back,” she said.
Next month’s grand opening will feature a personal appearance by pro bowlers E.J. Tackett and Natalie Goodman, Holland said. There will also be $1 games, $1 shoes and $1 fountain drinks, raffle tickets and giveaways with a 3 p.m. ribbon-cuttong ceremony, according to informaton on the Southern Lanes Facebook page.
And Holland says that some tournaments are planned and in the works, but it’s still a bit too soon to announce anything.
“The invention of the automatic pinsetter led to a rapid growth in the number of bowling alleys and lanes in the later 1950s and early 1960s. The heyday of bowling was the mid-1960s, when there were approximately 12,000 bowling centers in the United States,” according to Whitehutchinson.com, an online source focused on location-based entertainment.
But despite a decline in fad bowling, the sport continues to hold its own with participants who develop their ability.
And according to another online source, “Bowling is the most popular participation "game" sport in the U.S. with more than 43 million people going bowling at least once a year.” (Web.archive.org)
Bowling was the first winter sport included in the Olympics, in 1908. (wikipedia.org)
Holland said there’s currently only one other bowling alley in the county, that she’s aware of.
Your Bowling Center closed its doors just shy of a year prior to the opening of Southern Lanes. Both Your Bowling Center and Dazzles Skating Rink, located next door to Your Bowling Center, closed last year.
Both businesses opened in the 1980s as the county was expanding. Your Bowling Center originally opened in the early 1980s as West Georgia Bowling Center, while Dazzles opened in 1989.
The reaction at the time to the closing of Your Bowling Center was a mix of sadness and nostalgia about good times had there over the years.
Now that Southern Lanes is open its casual and/or more dedicated patrons can continue the ‘good times’ into the future.