Helen Brown didn't ask for the job of handling the Wednesday afternoon Seniors league at Thunderhead Westminster. But one thing led to another and she handles it every Wednesday now.
Helen was born in the small Carroll town of Smallwood and today lives just a few miles from Westminster.
She's retired from a job at Random House in Taneytown.
How did she happen to handle the Seniors duckpin league at Thunderhead?
Well, the lady that took care of it asked Helen to sub for her one day, and things just seemed to grow from there.
Now on Wednesday afternoons about 30 senior citizens gather at Thunderhead for their informal league.
"Everyone is welcome," says Helen. "Even if you have never bowled before, you're welcome.
"I never bowled in a league until 1968, and now I wouldn't miss my bowling for anything."
Helen bowls in the Tuesday Morning league at Thunderhead Westminster, the Thursday Morning league at Thunderhead Taneytown, the Random House league and the Wednesday night league at Thunderhead Westminster.
Of course, that Wednesday night league is after her Wednesday afternoon seniors league.
She carries a 109 average, with a high game of 191and high set of 443 -- pretty impressive duckpin figures.
That 191 game could have been a 200; she picked up one of three pins left standing in the last frame.
Haven't we all done that some time or another?
"I do love to bowl," Helen says. "But sometimes I think that maybe I shouldn't try to bowl in two leagues the same day.
"Sometimes, I get a little tired."
That's understandable; duckpin bowling is demanding.
When you're 78 years old, as Helen is, it could be a little tiring.
Bet she doesn't give it up.
ThunderheadTaneytown's loss is Thunderhead Westminster's gain.
Marie Narowanski was at Taneytown in 1978 when that center opened for business, and she remained there for 12 years.
Last year Marie, brought her love of bowling and her experience in the industry to Westminster.
Marie and her husband, Vernon, a program analyst for the Department ofSafety and Correction, moved from Baltimore to Taneytown 16 years ago. They continue to make it their home.
Marie is the mother of Jody Abend who is also employed at Thunderhead Westminster Lanes and grandmother to Ashley Abend, Jody's daughter.
"Jody started bowling when she was 5 years old," Marie said. "And Ashley, who is 7 years old, is bowling now."
Some ladies asked Joe Rineer if they couldkeep a scale in his office at Mount Airy Lanes not too long ago.
"Sure," Joe answered. "But, just out of curiosity, why?"
The ladies explained it to Joe. It seems they were all on diets and were usingthe bowling league for the exercise that was a necessary part of theplan. Simple enough and a pretty good plan.
Every morning when the ladies bowled, everyone was weighed in. One kept the results in a small black book.
Everything seemed to be working out fine for the dieting bowlers.
Certainly one of the daughters of the lady who kept the little black book thought so.
One day she called out to hermother from the other room, "Mom, you and the other ladies are doingjust great at your duckpin bowling; some of these scores are fantastic."
There weren't any scores in that particular book.