Happy National Bowling Day, Milwaukee!
As we move into autumn and eating and drinking on patios become less seasonable, people will start to look for other forms of entertainment that are both indoors and are not high-risk for contracting COVID-19.
Bowling fits the bill, according to Frank DeSocio, the executive director of the Bowling Proprietors' Association of America (BPAA), which is located in Arlington, Tex. but was headquartered in Greendale until 2008.
DeSocio says the sport already practices social distancing, routine disinfecting and isn't hindered by mask wearing.
"Although bowling centers are not essential businesses, they are essentially 'big boxes' just like a home improvement or a grocery store and so they already have the space needed for social distancing," says DeSocio.
Plus, disinfecting shoes has always been standard procedure at bowling centers and now the disinfecting of bowling balls is also part of the cleaning routine. Consequently, bowlers, no longer choose their ball from the rack like they did pre-COVID.
Many bowling centers are using every other lane and not taking large groups or parties. Graduation celebrations are usually big money makers for bowling alleys, something that wasn't possible this year.
Most bowling facilities experience their busy time in the month of March, April and May, which was when the pandemic first hit this year and have caused many to struggle financially during and after the mandatory shut down.
"Like so many businesses, bowling centers got hit hard," says DeSocio. "Especially since the spring months are to them like what December is to retail businesses."
There are 212 bowling centers in Wisconsin that are members of the BPAA, including JB's on 41 that reopened in June with these new procedures.
"Wisconsin is a wonderful bowling state and it always has been," says DeSocio. "Right now, it's tough out there, but we're going to get through this."
Molly Snyder grew up on Milwaukee's East Side and today, she lives in the Walker's Point neighborhood with her partner and two sons.
As a full time senior writer, editorial manager and self-described experience junkie, Molly has written thousands of articles about Milwaukee (and a few about New Orleans, Detroit, Indianapolis, Boston and various vacation spots in Wisconsin) that range in subject from where to get the best cup of coffee to an in-depth profile on the survivors of the iconic Norman apartment building that burned down in the '90s.
She also once got a colonic just to report on it, but that's enough on that.
Always told she had a "radio voice," Molly found herself as a regular contributor on FM102, 97WMYX and 1130WISN with her childhood radio favorite, Gene Mueller.
Molly's poetry, essays and articles appeared in many publications including USA Today, The Writer, The Sun Magazine and more. She has a collection of poetry, "Topless," and is slowly writing a memoir.
In 2009, Molly won a Milwaukee Press Club Award. She served as the Narrator / writer-in-residence at the Pfister Hotel from 2013-2014. She is also a story slam-winning storyteller who has performed with The Moth, Ex Fabula and Risk!
When she's not writing, interviewing or mom-ing, Molly teaches tarot card classes, gardens, sits in bars drinking Miller products and dreams of being in a punk band again.