Good news for the duckpin bowlers in the Pasadena area: You'll be scoring better at Riviera Bowl this year.
"My average has jumped three pins," said Riviera Bowl manager Glenna Grimes. "And we haven't refinished the lanes yet. That will be done next month in plenty of time for the 1992-1993 season."
Grimes credits that jump in her average to the new side boards that have been installed, that little extra bounce and roll of the pins.
"My arm is still recovering from the old injury, but it feels good enough for me to go on the Ladies Pro Duckpin tour," she said. "I always wanted to bowl on the pro tour but always put it off. Now I'm a 50-year-old rookie, and I'm having the time of my life.
"I have to ice the arm down after bowling, but the scores keep getting better, and right now I'm averaging 127."
Steve Sandusky, son of Alex Sandusky, the founder of Riviera Bowl, said, "Scoring has improved since the new side boards were installed. I expect the scoring to be even better after the lanes are cut down and resurfaced early next month."
That major renovation of the lanes is scheduled for the first week of July and is part of the general remodeling of Riviera Bowl. Always a well-run center Riviera Bowl, will present even a more attractive face to the bowlers this fall. And the scoring conditions will improve.
Millard Herald III is one bowler who can testify that the scoring already has improved. This year he finished with a 152 average, up from 142 the previous year.
Part of that increase is the talent of the young man coming to the fore. He's rapidly developing into one of the best young bowlers in the Baltimore/Washington area. Just last month he tied for first place in the prestigious Greenway Bowl East Open Mixed Doubles with his partner, Dorrie Brenner.
Curt Johnson is another excellent duckpin bowler who can attest to the improved scoring at Riviera Bowl. Once again we're talking about a bowler with a lot of natural ability and a fine average (147), good enough to be ranked ninth in the nation last year.
Johnson is having a difficult time throwing 200 games, however. At Riviera Bowl in the Sunday Mixed League, he banged out seven 500 series and never had a 200 game.
"I can't explain it," he said, "but for the entire season, Riviera Bowl and other centers, I had 15 sets of 500 and just one 200 game; the closest I came was a 196. But I guess I'm just bowling about as consistently as it's possible to do. I know that since I started throwing the ball out on the lane with a little less speed, I've been bowling pretty good."
I'd stop in and sign up for the 1992-1993 season right now at Riviera Bowl if I wanted to be sure of bowling there this season. Glenna Grimes still has openings in the winter leagues, but they'll be filled rapidly. It's going to be a great season.
Fair Lanes Southwest has two weekly tournaments in progress. Every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday, until the end of August, you can bowl in a two-ball, nine-count duckpin event. It's only $5 to enter and a lot of fun.
If you'd like something a little more challenging, Southwest also has a one-ball, seven-count tournament on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday until the end of August. The entry fee for this event is just $2. It's a lot of fun. I know, I competed.
This weekend, Southwest will present the Fair Lanes 28th annual Mixed Doubles Duckpin Summer Tour event. It will be in progress, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I'll be bowling in the tournament at 6 p.m. this Saturday if you want to stop for laughs.
The third annual Country Club Classic tenpin tournament will be this weekend and every weekend until the end of August. That tournament is run the way a tournament should be. That is, it's as fair as you can make it for every bowler.
It's broken into three divisions, "A" for averages 200 and above, "B" for bowlers who average 180-189, and "C" for bowlers with 179 and below. Division winners collect at least $1,000 and a shot at the grand prize of $4,000. Information: 410-686-2556.
Next weekend, over the Fourth of July, NABI will conduct the third annual Baltimore/Washington Firecracker Open at Crofton Bowling Centre. The first-place prize is a guaranteed $3,000. It starts Friday and finishes Sunday. Information: 410-721-2401.
Greenway Odenton will host the Ladies Professional Bowlers Tour regional event on Aug. 7-9. Here's the chance to see and bowl with the ladies of the pro tour. The Youth/Adult Pro-Am will be on Aug. 7, and the tournament finals will be on Aug. 9.
That day the Best of Bowling radio talk show will be live from the Greenway Odenton concourse.
Peggy Tully of Greenway Odenton could use some scorekeepers for this event, the first of its kind in Anne Arundel County. Call her at 551-7100.
Donald G. Vitek's Bowling column appears every Thursday in the Anne Arundel County Sun. Bowlers are urged to give Don a call with scores and tidbits at 247-0850.