Michael James shares exciting improvements to the South Point Bowling Plaza.
Back in March, I wrote an article called “Las Vegas as America’s New Bowling Capital.” In the article, I (among other things) listed the opening of South Point’s Bowling Plaza, the commitment of the United States Bowling Congress, and the Professional Bowlers Association to hold multiple events there over the next ten years. I had also included a mention that my wife was going to bowl the Women’s Championships at the South Point that April.
I won’t bore you with how she bowled (just about average, thanks for asking) but for as nice as the Bowling Plaza was, and for as much as I had appreciated South Point for giving bowlers such a great venue, one thing struck me… the walk from the parking to the Bowling Plaza.
This will be easier to visualize for people familiar with South Point, but picture the valet area in relation to the Coronado Cafe, which is the “coffee shop.” To get to the Bowling Plaza, you head towards the Arena which is down the hall from the Cafe. It is a very long walk to get to the escalators, and once up the escalators, there is more walking until you get to the Equestrian Center. From there, bowlers go through another hallway on the left to the second set of escalators, and after walking past some exhibit booths, you might begin to hear pins falling.
I estimate the walk to be about 2.73 miles from the valet.
But let’s not forget about the key word in Bowling Plaza (hint, it’s not “Plaza”). Most people are there to bowl.
In 2016, due to advances in chemistry and its relation to the physics of ball motion (both within the ball as well as the oil on the lane surface) bowling balls are very specialized to the competitive bowler. Like a golfer and his clubs, a player can carry numerous bowling balls in an arsenal and will switch at a moments notice if lane conditions warrant. For the USBC Open Championships, a bowler is allowed to check-in eight bowling balls.
In April, my wife brought along two bowling balls (she is not as competitive as I am) and as her personal assistant, I got the honor of dragging a roller bag with 30 pounds of equipment across that (carpeted) 2.73-mile journey. By the time we got all the way to the Bowling Plaza, I was beat.
By comparison, I will certainly bring eight bowling balls to my tournament in April 2017, and I’ve been telling everybody that I know will also be bowling about the arduous journey. I’ve got some roller bags and some that I carry, and I can’t see a scenario where I don’t have to make two trips (each way) to get all of my equipment to the Plaza.
I was in Las Vegas this past weekend, and bowling’s US Open was being held at the South Point Bowling Plaza while I was there. I decided to watch the final match play round on Tuesday evening, and as I was heading to the Bowling Plaza, I saw this…
Clearly excited by this sign, I immediately posted it on various Facebook groups to the joyous rapture of all! Now we only have to drag equipment across the carpet for about 1.38 miles!
(Author’s Note: All distances are approximate and may be slightly exaggerated.)
[Photos: Michael James, USBC, Brunswick Bowling, South Point Bowling Plaza]