So, you are sad that the bowling alley is gone. I am too. It’s been since March 2015 that Enterprise Lanes was finally closed after its sale to someone who had other plans for the property. You don’t have to be a good bowler to like bowling. I’m terrible at it, but it’s still fun and I miss being able to do it. Those people who are really good at it must be devastated. But I have a plan to come together to get ourselves a new bowling alley. I hope you’ll help. (Skip to the last point if you don’t care to read this whole thing.)
Inside Enterprise Lanes in 2014. Photo by Shelli Poole
What’s the backstory?
If you didn’t know, Enterprise was the only bowling alley in Saline County, located on Military Road in Benton, and was around for years. But it was privately owned and the owner wanted to sell. That is his choice. The next owner didn’t want a bowling alley. For a year, residents speculated about what would happen with the property. There were lots of rumors and the real plans may have even changed over the months, but now we know it will be a location of Planet Fitness, due to open in the Fall of 2016.
But what about all the bowlers?
What do you do if the person you love breaks up with you and marries someone else? You move on and don’t harass them.
Some blame the former owner for their plight. But he did what was best for him and since we live in a capitalist country, he is allowed to do that. Some blame the City of Benton. While it’s true that they have the power to bring more family activities to the City, they are doing that by building Riverside Park with our tax dollars. There are many options for activities in the coming park; however, none of them are bowling.
Who is at fault for this situation?
It’s difficult for some to move on in a breakup situation. That’s what this is. But you have to form the question at some point, “Does blame play a part in our quest for bowling?” I personally don’t think it’s relevant, given that there’s no restitution at stake. Although there are many victims, there’s no villain here. In other words, we can’t turn back time, the former owner isn’t coming back to re-purchase the bowling alley, the City isn’t going to build us one – I mean unless you want to start another bond for such a thing. But… do you want the government to own everything? That would be getting closer to communism. I won’t give an opinion on that, but I’m guessing that most people still want to stick to a capitalist society. Let’s move on.
How do we get a bowling alley?
What do you do if you’re in love? You tell the person you’re in love with and hopefully, they love you too.
I propose (because love) that we who want a bowling alley come together as a group and make a solid plan about how to get one. That could involve finding a franchise. Maybe finding a pro bowler that wants to start an alley. It might just be an investor who is like-minded. If the people with the power to build and run a bowling alley don’t know we want one, they are not likely to give us one. Here is what I have done… I’ve started a group on Facebook that is exclusively for bringing a bowling alley to Saline County.
Join the group for these reasons, in order of the level of involvement, from high to low:
1. You want to build a bowling alley yourself.
2. You want to invest time or money into getting a bowling alley here.
3. You want to discuss ways to bring one here.
4. You want to keep up with the progress.
5. You want to add to the number of people in the group for strength in numbers.
Here is the group link. https://www.facebook.com/groups/salinecountybowling/
Join the group, share the link, invite your friends, family and former bowling partners. Tell your elected officials. This means jobs, revenue, recreation and giving adults, families and children an outlet for fun and competition. Let’s do this.
- The Business Going In Next to Planet Fitness Is Hoping for a Smooth Transition – July 5, 2018
- Epic Update: New Stores, Subdivisions, Liquor Stores, a Bank and some Restaurants – December 2, 2016
- So You Want a Bowling Alley Again? Let’s Make This Happen – August 19, 2016
- Signs Point to a Particular Fitness Franchise Coming to the Old Bowling Alley in Benton – April 25, 2016