WESTMINSTER — Rick Rebert wasn't born in a bowling center -- but he didn't miss bymuch.
His family operates the Thunderhead Bowling Centers in Westminster, Taneytown and Gettysburg, Pa., and he's been involved since he was 7. Fourteen years later, he's still active in the business.
"I don't have any other plans than being active as a bowler and being active in the bowling business," Rebert said. "I love to bowl, and I love the bowling business."
That's why you'll find him so busy in the Thunderhead Taneytown Bowling Center.
He's able to do anything in the center that has to be done. And he does pretty good on the lanes too.
Rebert throws a 16-pound Hammer ball for a 180 average, with a high set of 612 and a high game of 248.
Last May he waspart of the Taneytown boys team that placed 13th in the Maryland State Mens Bowling Association's annual championship at Forest Hill Lanes in Harford County. That five-man team had three-game team total of 2,729.
The native of Carroll County continues to make his home in Westminster, where he graduated from Westminster High.
As busy as he is helping to run the Taneytown center, Rebert still finds time tobowl on Tuesday nights with the Bucks and Does league and the Thursday Men's Classic league, both at Thunderhead Taneytown.
What does Rebert see in the future for bowling?
"I think that you'll see more and more young people starting to bowl," he said. "Other entertainment is much more expensive than bowling and you can bowl any time youwant -- the weather can't stop you."
If you haven't been to Thunderhead Taneytown Lanes, stop in sometime; it's cheerful, clean, well-run, and I can guarantee Rebert will see that you enjoy yourself.
A few week ago in the Thursday Men's Classic league, Joe Pickettenjoyed himself -- I think.
Pickett was born and raised in Taneytown, where he still lives with his wife, Donna, and sons, Joe Jr. and Ashley.
You bet they're learning to bowl too.
Pickett has average of close to 200 and has thrown a 300 game in the past.
On this Thursday night, he threw 18 strikes in a row, which is enough strikes for anyone to enjoy themselves.
Well, maybe not. You see, Joe had a spare in the first frame and then threw 18 strikes.
Which game him a 290 game. A lot of enjoyment, I think, but no 300 game.
Tenpins is a grand game.
* Periodically, a duckpin bowling tip willappear in this column from Joe Rineer.
Rineer, a resident of New Windsor, is color commentator for the television show "Duckpin Magic"and a ranking professional duckpin bowler who has won many tournaments, including the 1977 National All-Star.
Here's Rineer's first tip:
Many of us have a game plan when stepping on the approach to bowl duckpins.
Those of us who have a game plan and a mental pictureof what it is we trying to do often abandon the plan too quickly. Soquickly that we have no alternative plan.
If you have ever rolleda strike, you have concrete evidence that you can physically play the game; from this point on, start working on the mental part of the game.
The key to the mental game is the ability to concentrate, not think.
Each of us should have a routine that is used to create total concentration. Rineer calls this the one, two, three, go approach to our game.
It's much easier said than done.
One method you can use to make this work for you is one-word commands.
Simple commands such as relax, walk, low, lift, smooth, spot -- the fewer commands you use the better chance of total concentration and less chance of thinking.
Never use negative commands. Never.
You, and only you, can change your routine and command words.
You may have to change those commands from time to time.
Try it. Instant success is not guaranteed. It takes practice.
If you have question for Joe Rineer, drop a line to Bowling tips, The Carroll County Sun, 15 E. MainSt., Westminster, Md. 21157 (or fax it to 876-0233), and he'll do his best to answer it in this column.