Category Archives for National News

USBC National Event Schedule Announced, U.S. Open to be held in Green Bay

ARLINGTON, Texas - A new year is on the horizon, and that means exciting things for tournament bowlers and BowlTV subscribers.

The 2021 United States Bowling Congress event calendar again will include the traditional tournaments competitors of all ages and skill levels have grown to enjoy.

The tournament schedule and live BowlTV coverage will kick off with the USBC Team USA Trials during the first week of January.

The event originally was slated to take place in Las Vegas, but it now will be held in the Indianapolis area during the same time frame - Jan. 2-7. Complete details will be available next week.

The Team USA Trials will be followed by two high-profile events run in conjunction with the Professional Bowlers Association - the 2021 U.S. Open and USBC Masters.

The U.S. Open tentatively is scheduled for Feb. 21-28 at The Ashwaubenon Bowling Alley in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and the Masters is slated for March 29-April 4 at the Gold Coast Bowling Center in Las Vegas.

Both sets of dates are subject to change based on the schedule and programming for the PBA and its TV partner, FOX Sports, while locations and entry maximums also can change due to recommended best practices, social-distancing protocol and other COVID-19 restrictions.

"We're excited to get back to doing what we love, and that is putting on top-tier events for all of our USBC members, but we also know we must do so cautiously and responsibly, because the safety of the competitors is our top concern," USBC Executive Director Chad Murphy said. "The 2021 schedule has something for every segment of our bowlers, and we're really looking forward to sharing the year's most memorable moments with bowling fans around the globe through BowlTV."

Both the U.S. Open, a collaborative effort between USBC and the Bowling Proprietors' Association of America, and the Masters, again will be considered majors on the PBA Tour schedule. Qualifying and match play for both will be livestreamed on BowlTV, before the action shifts to Fox Sports.

Invitations for the U.S. Open will be going out this week, and registration now is open for the pre-tournament qualifier, an on-site event that will give those who did not earn direct-entry into the tournament a chance to make the elite field. More information can be found at BOWL.com/USOpen.

The 2021 U.S. Open will feature 108 of the world's best bowlers, most of whom earned their spots in the event based on their recent on-lane performances. The list includes leaders on the PBA Tour points list and top performers at USBC events and PBA majors.

The U.S. Open format features qualifying across multiple oil patterns and round-robin match play, before the top five competitors advance to the TV stepladder, based on their 56-game pinfall totals.

The Masters generally attracts hundreds of the sport's top competitors for 15 games of qualifying over three days, before the field is cut to the top 63, plus the defending champion, for a unique double-elimination match-play bracket that features three-game matches.

The 2020 U.S. Open was held in Lincoln, Nebraska, in February and won by Australia's Jason Belmonte for the 12th of his record 13 major titles. The 2020 Masters was canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19. Left-hander Jakob Butturff won the event at Gold Coast in 2019.

Along with the U.S. Open and Masters, the format, location and entry maximums for all 2021 USBC tournaments are subject to change based on the recommended best practices and social-distancing protocols as the start date of each tournament approaches.

The dates, sites and start of registration for each USBC short-duration event in 2021:

  • Jan. 2-7: USBC Team USA Trials - Western Bowl and Expo Bowl, Indianapolis (registration opened Sept. 8)
  • Feb. 21-28 (tentative): U.S. Open - Ashwaubenon Bowling Alley, Green Bay, Wis. (registration opens Oct. 28) *Dates are subject to change w/PBA and FOX Sports scheduling/programming.
  • March 9-13: USBC Senior Queens - Gold Coast Bowling Center, Las Vegas (registration opens Nov. 11)
  • March 29-April 4 (tentative): USBC Masters - Gold Coast Bowling Center, Las Vegas (registration opens Nov. 11) *Dates are subject to change w/PBA and FOX Sports scheduling/programming.
  • May 12-18: USBC Queens - Location TBD (registration opens Jan. 13)
  • June 2-6: Super Senior Classic - Sam's Town Bowling Center, Las Vegas (registration opens Jan. 13)
  • June 7-13: USBC Senior Masters - Sam's Town Bowling Center, Las Vegas (registration open Jan. 13)
  • Aug. 24-31: U.S. Women's Open - Double Decker Lanes, Rohnert Park, Calif. (registration opens April 7)
  • Aug. 3-6: 2020 USBC Senior Championships - Sunset Station, Henderson, Nev. (registration is complete)
  • Aug. 8-14: 2021 USBC Senior Championships - Sunset Station, Henderson, Nev. (registration opens Feb. 10) *Bowlers must qualify through their state or province.

USBC Will Lower Youth Membership Maximum Age to 18 Starting With 2020-21 Season

ARLINGTON, Texas – The United States Bowling Congress will lower the maximum age for USBC Youth membership to 18 starting with the 2020-2021 season.

The decision to lower to the maximum age from 20 to 18, with agreement from the Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America and the International Bowling Campus Youth Committee, will align bowling with other youth sports.

“Over the last decade, we have made changes to USBC Youth programs and tournaments to provide a model comparable with other youth sports,” IBC Youth Managing Director of Youth Development Gary Brown said. “We moved to age-based divisions, as opposed to average, for events, to provide peer-to-peer competition. Setting the maximum age for youth bowlers to 18 aligns us with the standard of other national youth sports organizations.”

A U18 division will become the top division for the Pepsi Youth and Bowling.com Youth Open Championships for the 2020-2021 season. During the next season, USBC will address how the age change will impact the 2021 Junior Gold Championships, which will have a separate U20 division. Please visit BOWL.com/YouthAgeChange for additional information.

Starting with the 2020-2021 season, USBC Youth membership policy will state youth membership is available to individuals who have not reached the age of 18 prior to Aug. 1 of the current bowling season. The decision to lower the maximum age will directly impact 3.3 percent of the total youth membership. The change also better aligns USBC Youth membership with new regulations from the U.S. Center for SafeSport requiring training for those over 18 who participate in a sport with minors. 

Any USBC Youth member who reaches the age of 18 during the bowling season is required to complete the U.S. Center for SafeSport online education program, which is free, to continue to compete in leagues that have participants under age 18. This requirement was announced with the release of the revised Registered Volunteer Program (RVP) handbook.

The new age limit marks the second time the USBC Youth maximum age has been lowered. In 2009, USBC lowered the maximum age for youth bowlers from 22 to 20.

Visit BOWL.com/Youth to learn more about the youth bowling programs and events.

Bowling Virtual Vault Introduced by bowling museum

The International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame is providing fans of bowling – and history – a way to experience the sport from anywhere in the world through an online collection of the many great items in the museum’s vast inventory.

BowlingHeritage.com is the gateway to the Bowling Virtual Vault, which features many of the historic items on display at the museum in Arlington, plus additional collections the museum is not able to display year-round because of space constraints.

“The Bowling Virtual Vault provides access to great memorabilia, and visitors also will learn about the greatest players, teams, moments and so much more about bowling’s history,” said Mike Aulby, President and Chairman of the IBMHOF Board of Trustees. “It’s a fantastic way for those who might not be able to visit the museum to see our outstanding collections. It is a fun and engaging look at bowling for even the most casual fans of the sport.”

Visit BowlingHeritage.com to access the Bowling Virtual Vault.

RULE CHANGE: Rule 18 – Altering Surface

RULE 18: BOWLING BALL – ALTERING SURFACE


A significant change in Rule 18 became effective Aug. 1, 2019. Bowlers no longer can use liquids or add anything,including but not limited to rosin or powder, to the surface of the bowling ball. We have created this document toexplain how the rule change affects you and your bowling ball(s) during USBC league and tournament play.


Rule 18 – Bowling Ball - Altering Surface

While bowling in USBC competition, a bowling ball cannot:


  1.  Have the surface altered by the use of an abrasive.
  2. Be cleaned with any liquid substance or cleaning agent.
  3. Have any foreign material on it including, but not limited to, powder, rosin, marker or paint.

All bowling balls so altered or cleaned must be removed from the competition.


Note: Should a foreign substance appear on the outer surface of a bowling ball which cannot be removed with a dry towel, an approved cleaner may be used with consent from a league or tournament officer.


COMMONLY ASKED QUESTIONS RELATED TO THE RULE CHANGE

1. When does competition start? Competition starts once any bowler throws a ball for score in a league or tournament.


2. Can I clean my ball with an approved cleaner during practice? You can clean your ball with an approved cleaner during practice, unless otherwise specified by league or tournament rules.


3. Can I clean my ball with an approved cleaner between games during certified competition? No. You cannot clean your ball between games, because the competition has started.


4. Can I clean my ball with an approved cleaner between tournament squads? You can clean your ball with an approved cleaner between squads unless otherwise specified by tournament rules. “During competition” could be defined by tournaments to include or exclude practice and time between squads.


5. What type of towels are approved for use during USBC certified competition? Any dry towel or cloth that does not alter the surface of the bowling ball is allowed. This includes the use of dry shammys.


6. If I used a towel with a liquid cleaner on it to clean my ball prior to the start of the competition, can I use that same towel to clean the ball during the competition? That same towel can only be used during the competition once the towel is dry.


7. If I take a ball out of my bag that I have not bowled with, can I clean it with an approved cleaner? No, approved cleaners cannot be used once competition has begun. This rule applies to balls from a bowler’s bowling bag, locker or car, etc. We suggest you clean all your bowling balls prior to the start of competition.


8. What happens if a bowler uses a cleaner, abrasive, or puts a foreign substance on the ball? If the bowler was not aware of the rule, the ball is removed from competition. The bowler also should be given an explanation of the rule. Conversely, if the bowler knows a ball cannot be cleaned, patted with rosin or powder or use an abrasive, the ball must be removed from competition and the games are subject to forfeiture. If there is a question as to whether a bowler knew the rule or not, the league board of directors makes the determination.


9. Can I pat my ball with rosin or powder if I wipe the ball before it is delivered? No. Wiping the ball with a towel does not make the ball compliant to the rule. Patting a ball with a product is adding a foreign substance to the ball and cannot be done during competition. A product can only be applied to a bowler’s hand and not leave residue on the surface of the ball.


10. If my ball comes back with residue on it and I cannot clean it with my dry towel, rag or shammy, can I use an approved cleaner? Yes, provided you get permission from a league officer or tournament official. If you clean your ball without prior permission, you may be asked to remove the ball from competition, and/or the games may be subject to forfeiture.


11. When I have permission to clean my ball, may I clean the entire ball? Yes, you may clean the entire surface of a bowling ball or just the area needing to be cleaned.


12. I have a ball cleaner that has the USBC “Approved Anytime” logo on it. Can I still use the cleaner during competition? No, the cleaner can no longer be used during competition.


13. I still see there are products with the USBC “Approved Anytime” logo on it. Why is that?USBC communicated the rule change with bowling ball cleaner companies prior to the adoption of the rule changes to allow the companies to make the necessary adjustments to labeling and cycle through existing inventories. There will be USBC “Approved Anytime” products in the marketplace until inventories are depleted; however, these products cannot be used during competition.

USBC Releases Lane Inspections Research, Extends Data Collection Through Next Season

ARLINGTON, Texas – Data collected during the lane certification process shows approximately 91 percent of all centers inspected had less than 10 percent of the items measured out of specification and approximately 72 percent of the centers have less than 5 percent of items out of spec.

The 2018-2019 season marks the first time the United States Bowling Congress is analyzing all data received from lane certifications and is developing a database to examine all measurements. Between the lane and pin deck, lane inspectors make 29 measurements on each synthetic lane and 21 measurements on each wood lane during the inspection process.

As of Dec. 1, more than 3,300 centers and 72,800 lanes had been inspected. The final data is expected to encompass more than 4,200 centers.

“The annual lane inspection process is always a major task and we greatly appreciate the work of the local association volunteers and the assistance of the bowling centers,” USBC Equipment Specifications Committee chair Andrew Cain said. “The data from these reports will provide more valuable insight into the playing fields of our sport.”

After reviewing the data, the Equipment Specifications and Certifications Committee has determined it will extend the data collection for another season. To get additional center certification data, all centers that have a proper inspection with the three required signatures and supply the data to USBC Headquarters will be certified for the 2019-2020 season.

Also starting with inspections for the 2019-2020 season, USBC will increase the certification fee to allow local associations to charge up to $10 per lane bed. The fee increase is the first in more than two decades, when the certification fee went from $3 to $5 per lane for the 1995-1996 season.

The data from inspections for the 2018-2019 season show about 85 percent of all lanes measured were synthetic lanes or had synthetic overlays. Lane topography measurements, which include crosswise tilts, are taken on each of the five panels for synthetic lanes and three locations for wood lanes.

The first, or head, panel was found to have the most out-of-specification measurements, though approximately 93% of the crowns and depressions are within specification and about 94% of the cross-tilt measurements are also within specification.

The backend of the lane showed the highest specification compliance with about 98% of the results for crowns/depressions and cross tilts on the last three panels meeting the specifications.

USBC also looked at the end pair of lanes on each end of bowling centers, as there is a common perception that lanes on either the high end or low end of a bowling center tend to play different from the rest of a center’s lanes. Data showed the topography variance was not significant, meaning if the lanes do not play the same, lane topography is not the reason.

Last year, USBC announced new requirements for lane inspections and adjusted specifications for new installations starting with the 2019-2020 season. The new requirements were based on research conducted by the USBC Equipment Specifications and Certifications team that included analysis of the lane certification paperwork submitted by 323 centers, an examination of more than 1,000 lanes throughout the country, a study of the pin deck specifications, and an examination of lane topography.

USBC has since been educating both associations and bowling centers about the changes, which included a new application for center certification for the 2018-2019 season. To ensure it would receive data from all center inspections, USBC allowed a one-year grace period for centers that receive an inspection and supplied USBC Headquarters with the inspection data and the three required signatures.

USBC also has worked to educate all stakeholders about the center certification process, conducting 30 Lane Inspection Workshops during the 2017-2018 season including two workshops at the 2018 USBC Convention.

USBC had 966 people from more than 300 associations attend Lane Inspection Workshops in the field and 450 association volunteers attend the workshops held at convention.

The work of the lane inspectors this season and next season will provide data that will help the USBC Equipment Specifications Committee better understand the true landscape of bowling center topography and other key measurements within the field of play and to set a clear path in this area.

Visit the Equipment and Specifications page on BOWL.com to learn more about center certifications.

USBC Adjusts Timeline for New Bowling Ball Specifications

ARLINGTON, Texas – After reviewing feedback from industry partners, the United States Bowling Congress Equipment and Specifications Committee has revised the implementation dates for the new bowling ball specifications announced earlier this year.

 

The Equipment and Specifications Committee determined the specification allowing increases in static weights for bowling balls without balance holes will begin this fall to allow for a smoother transition for bowlers.

 

Starting Aug. 1, 2018, bowling balls weighing more than 10 pounds will be allowed to have up to three ounces of static side, thumb or finger weight and up to three ounces of top or bottom weight, provided the ball does not have a balance hole.

 

Bowlers still can have a bowling ball with a balance hole until Aug. 1, 2020, but any balls with a balance hole must stay within the current static weight specification of one ounce for finger, thumb or side weight, and three ounces for top or bottom weight.

 

The specification eliminating the use of balance holes still will go into effect Aug. 1, 2020.

 

“After hearing from all stakeholders, the committee decided it was the right move to make the static weight specification an option starting this fall,” Andrew Cain, chair of the USBC Equipment and Specifications Committee, said. “Bowlers now have a two-year window to work with their pro shops to ensure their equipment will meet specifications on Aug. 1, 2020.”

 

With the elimination of balance holes as of Aug. 1, 2020, bowlers may have up to five holes for gripping purposes and all gripping holes must be used on every delivery. A bowler who chooses not to use a thumb hole would need to mark by scribe, engraver or tool their intended center of palm with a plus (+) mark to indicate their grip orientation.

 

Bowlers who do not use their thumb for delivery and decide to use the higher static weight specification cannot have a thumb hole – it would be classified a balance hole – and immediately will be required to follow the specification requiring them to mark their intended center of palm.

 

The USBC Equipment and Specifications Committee did decide the gripping rules that become effective Aug. 1, 2020, will have an exception for house balls, for bowlers who use house balls and might not have the strength to use all gripping holes.

 

House balls are defined as balls supplied by the center where the competition is taking place, have a polyester or basic urethane cover, a differential RG of less than 0.025 inches and the ball is not specifically drilled to fit the bowler.

 

The dates for implementing the new specification for the oil absorption rate of bowling ball coverstocks do not change. The initial step on the oil absorption specification will begin Aug. 1, 2018, when bowling ball manufacturers are required to submit oil absorption data as part of the USBC bowling ball approval process. The specification requiring a bowling ball’s oil absorption rate to be more than 2 minutes, 15 seconds (2:15) for the ball to be approved will take effect Aug. 1, 2020.

 

However, because all current bowling balls will be grandfathered in regardless of oil absorption rate, the Equipment Specifications Committee determined the production of balls that do not meet the 2:15 oil absorption time limit must be stopped as of Jan. 31, 2022.

 

The new bowling ball specifications announced in April were designed to sustain the playing field both currently and in the future.

 

The Equipment and Specifications Committee has delegated authority from the USBC Board to make changes to equipment specifications.

 

Visit BOWL.com/EquipAndSpecs for more about the specification changes.

USBC SETS NEW SPECIFICATIONS FOR BOWLING BALLS

Note: Below is a copy of the press release the USBC put out in regards to new ball specifications that will take effect in 2020.   I was at the seminar when this was announced where a lot of information was shared into the research and reasoning during the USBC National Convention.  Feel free to send me a message with any questions, I'll get back to you as soon as I can.


A video with a summary of the research presented is available below as well.


- Zach Boulanger
Association Manager
GBBA USBC BA


ARLINGTON, Texas – Following three years of research on how technology has affected the sport of bowling, the United States Bowling Congress Equipment and Specifications Committee has established new specifications designed to sustain the playing field both currently and in the future.

The new specifications, which will be implemented over the course of the next two seasons, were announced at the USBC Convention in Reno, Nevada.
 
“Technology impacts every sport, but it is our role as the National Governing Body to ensure the skill of the competitors on the lanes remains the deciding factor,” said Andrew Cain, chair of the USBC Equipment and Specifications Committee. “The research presented revealed the impact technology has made on the sport’s playing environment and the committee determined there was a need to enact these specifications.”

A new specification has been established for the oil absorption rate of bowling ball coverstocks, the first time such a specification has been set, and a specification to eliminate balance holes while increasing static weight allowances also has been approved.

In addition, new rules will be put into place to allow only a dry towel to be used to clean bowling balls during competition and to keep bowlers from changing the static weight (i.e. drilling grip holes deeper) of bowling balls during competition.

“The diligent work of the USBC Equipment Specifications and Certifications team spurred discussions in several areas and the committee made decisions that are needed to protect our sport’s future,” USBC President Frank Wilkinson said. “Technology will continue to push the boundaries and we will continue to analyze every aspect to make certain we are doing what’s in the best interests of bowling and our members.”

The new oil absorption specification for bowling ball coverstocks will require that for a new ball to be approved, submitted ball samples cannot have a rate of oil absorption under 2 minutes and 15 seconds (2:15), and must adhere to the 0.6% non-conformance rate. 

The initial step on the oil absorption specification will begin Aug. 1, 2018, when bowling ball manufacturers are required to submit oil absorption data as part of the USBC bowling ball approval process. Manufacturers have been provided a standard operating procedure (SOP) to determine oil absorption rates.

The specification requiring a bowling ball’s oil absorption rate to be more than 2:15 for the ball to be approved will take effect Aug. 1, 2020. Also, any ball models tested where the average oil absorption rate is under nine minutes and 30 seconds (9:30) will require additional balls to be tested.

The specification eliminating the use of balance holes will go into effect Aug. 1, 2020. Balance holes, also known as weight holes, are meant to correct static imbalance in bowling balls, but more recently have been used to change the design intent of balls. By allowing bowling balls (for balls weighing more than 10 pounds) to have up to three ounces of static side, thumb and finger weight – which is up from one ounce – and up to three ounces of top weight, there no longer will be the need for a balance hole to correct static imbalance in the typical ball layout.

The specification increases in static weights take effect Jan. 1, 2020, which will allow bowlers the opportunity to plug balance holes prior to the elimination of balance holes starting Aug. 1, 2020.  

With the elimination of balance holes, bowlers may have up to five holes for gripping purposes and all gripping holes must be used on every delivery.

The change allowing only a dry towel to clean bowling balls during competition becomes effective Aug. 1, 2019. It eliminates the use of liquid cleaners of any kind during competition, which aligns with other changes to ensure equipment is not manipulated during competition. The change prohibiting a bowler from adjusting static weight during a competition by drilling grip holes deeper goes into effect Aug. 1, 2020.

It is important for bowlers to understand the specification for oil absorption will not eliminate any bowling balls from competition, as all current balls will be grandfathered in. Bowlers also should be aware that because the increase in static weights starts Jan. 1, 2020, they will have seven months to have any balance hole plugged so they will be in compliance when the specification eliminating balance holes starts Aug. 1, 2020.

The Equipment and Specifications Committee has delegated authority from the USBC Board to make changes to equipment specifications. The USBC Board fully supports the direction and action taken by the Equipment Specifications Committee.

USBC will conduct a media-only teleconference on Tuesday, April, 24 at 8 p.m. (Eastern) with Equipment Specifications Committee members and USBC staff. To participate in the conference call, media members can email terry.bigham@bowl.com with their name and affiliation for call-in instructions.

Visit BOWL.com/EquipAndSpecs for USBC’s research and more about the specification changes.

USBC to reclassify more than 700 leagues as Sport or Challenge leagues based on research

Note:  The article below was originally posted by the USBC on Bowl.com


ARLINGTON, Texas – After researching the averages of bowlers who competed in multiple leagues during the 2016-2017 season, the United States Bowling Congress determined the lane conditions used in more than 700 leagues were more difficult than conditions in Standard leagues and those leagues will be reclassified with the appropriate Sport or Challenge designation.

A total of 605 leagues will be reclassified to Challenge leagues and 99 leagues will be reclassified as Sport leagues based on data that showed the scoring pace was significantly different from the scoring pace its members had on Standard league conditions.

The averages of the bowlers in those leagues now will carry a Sport or Challenge designation on Find A Member. If they have no other average, the bowlers will need to follow Rule 201 and use the Sport or Challenge conversion charts when entering leagues or tournaments bowled on Standard conditions.

“Average integrity is an important issue this industry continues to face and USBC is being proactive in using the data to make sure leagues are properly classified,” USBC Executive Director Chad Murphy said. “This is another positive step to leveling the playing field at all USBC certified events.”

During the next several days, USBC will send emails and letters to the league secretary, league president and bowling center of the leagues, and inform the local and state association managers of the reclassification. The letters also will state that leagues have the right to appeal the reclassification; any appeals will be overseen by the USBC Rules department.

With assistance from the USBC Specifications and Certification department, the USBC Membership department examined the averages of every league from the 2016-2017 season.

To ensure it had a sample size large enough to evaluate a league, at least 20 percent of a league’s members had to have an average in another league if the league was to be evaluated for possible reclassification.

For leagues with a large enough sample size, the data showed 99 leagues were statistically more difficult for bowlers, with averages of 20 or more pins higher in a Standard or “house shot” league, which showed the league was competing on Sport conditions. It also found 605 leagues in which bowler averages were 10-19 pins higher in Standard leagues, which shows Challenge lane conditions.

The reclassification of the leagues continues USBC’s efforts to ensure the averages bowlers use in leagues and competitions are a true reflection of their abilities. It also is part of the continuing evaluation of leagues following changes to the Sport program several years ago.

The Sport Bowling program was changed in 2015, removing the membership costs and the need to submit lane tapes, and became a resource for lane patterns and information for bowlers seeking a more challenging level. Leagues were tasked with self-reporting by designating their league as Sport if the league used the tougher lane conditions.

To bridge the gap between Sport and Standard leagues, USBC introduced the Challenge league designation in 2017 for leagues using tougher, though not Sport, lane conditions. Compared to Standard lanes conditions (house shot), bowlers in Challenge leagues have averages that are 10-19 pins lower than averages on a house shot. Averages in Sport leagues are 20 or more pins lower.

Visit BOWL.com/SportBowling to learn more about Sport and Challenge lane conditions.

BVL Hits $1,000,000 Mark!

For the first time since 2001, bowling’s own, oldest and most successful charity, the Bowlers to Veterans Link, has cleared the million dollar mark – raising $1,069,779.75 going into the organization’s 75th Anniversary year.


“We’re absolutely delighted that we have broken that million dollar mark,” notes BVL Executive Director Mary Harrar.  “These monies were raised across America by volunteers that understand the importance of the BVL mission to Brighten Veterans’ Lives.  They know that their efforts will truly have an important impact on our veterans.”


The majority of the contributions – more than $630,000 – was derived from approximately 300 USBC associations and leagues throughout the country, up from $594,000 in the 15-16 season. Of that, $7,374.67 came from the State of Wisconsin.


“We can’t thank our bowlers from Wisconsin enough to help us break that million dollar mark,” notes BVL Executive Director Mary Harrar.  “Throughout the state — in small towns and big cities — your hard-working volunteers really made a difference.”


The remainder of the funds raised was the result of donations from bowling center campaigns, corporate support, personal contributions, and dollars donated in honor of members of the bowling community and military veterans.  Harrar adds, “From our corporate partners to youth league fund-raisers, our cause is being embraced by all segments of the sport.”


A complete list of the 16-17 contributors can be found at http://www.bowlforveterans.org/contributors/


BVL funds are used to provide recreational and therapeutic programs and activities to help brighten the days of veterans; encouraging participation in sports and the arts to help speed recuperation and boost morale.


Founded in 1942, BVL has been recognized by the Department of Veterans Affairs for its commitment to America’s veterans. Notes VA Secretary Dr. David Shulkin, “Our country’s sacred obligation to fully honor our commitments to our Veterans is deeply personal to me, and I’m particularly grateful to Bowlers to Veterans Link for joining us in their own enduring commitment and noble work for Veterans.  My deep thanks to BVL for steadfastly honoring Veterans’ sacrifices.” 


Harrar concludes, “While we thank each and every Wisconsin BVL volunteer and contributor for their efforts, we want to redouble our commitment as we enter this new season.  There is plenty of room for more associations to get involved.  Contact me at mary@bvl.org to get your free fund-raising kit.  Let’s work together to make our 75th Anniversary year better than ever!”

How can you help?

  1. Order a free fund raising kit: mary@bvl.org
  2. Visit us on Facebook and “Like” our page: https://www.facebook.com/BowlerstoVeteransLink/
  3. Visit our website and sign up for our email news: http://www.bowlforveterans.org/

BVL ǁ 11350 Random Hills Road Suite 800 ǁ Fairfax, VA  22030 ǁ 703.934.6030 ǁ www.BowlforVeterans.org

Lane Certification Study Prompts New Specifications for 2019

Article from Bowl.com​

ARLINGTON, Texas –

The United States Bowling Congress will implement new requirements for lane inspections and will adjust specifications for new installations for the 2019-2020 season based on recent research conducted by the USBC Equipment Specifications and Certifications team.

The research included analysis of the lane certification paperwork submitted by 323 centers, an examination of more than 1,000 lanes throughout the country, in which lanes were checked to determine compliance with current specifications, a study of the pin deck, and an examination of lane topography.

The studies were undertaken to determine the extent of lanes that were out of specification, which pin deck measurements have the most effect on scoring, how lane topography shifts over time, and how lane topography affects the ball path.

“The USBC team did a tremendous job in its research, looking at how lanes are inspected and how the lanes perform under current specifications,” USBC Executive Director Chad Murphy said. “The results helped us to make decisions on ways to improve the lane certification process and how installations are done. The studies and subsequent changes are important to ensuring the lanes USBC members compete on in leagues and competitions meet required standards.”

The key changes to lane certification will be the specification change for new installations, including overlays on existing lanes, the number of measurements required for each lane, and how kickbacks, the side panels of each lane in the pit area, are measured.

For new installations, including overlays on existing lanes, the specification for crowns/depressions and crosswise tilts now will be plus/minus thirty-thousandths of an inch starting Aug. 1, 2019. USBC also will require an inspection within 14 days following the completion of a new installation.

The specification change only is at the time of installation, and will minimize maintenance costs. The specification returns to plus/minus forty-thousandths for the next annual inspection.

Lane topography, which looks at contours, crowns and depressions, showed lane surfaces can change throughout the year because of environmental conditions such as temperature and humidity. If lanes start flatter, they will stay within the current specification of forty-thousandths of an inch for a longer time, prompting the specification change.

Starting with certifications for the 2018-2019 season, a new application for center certification will be available on BOWL.com that will address the number of measurements required for each lane and how kickbacks are measured.

Lane inspectors will be required to measure the lanes at five locations for crowns/depressions and crosswise title, instead of the current three locations. With many lanes using synthetic panels, and the fact it takes five synthetic panels to construct a lane, there is a need to have at least one measurement for each panel.

A pin deck area scoring study determined the most important measurement affecting percentage of strikes is the distance between the kickbacks at the back of the pin deck. Measurements now will be taken from kickback plate to kickback plate starting with the 2018-2019 season, as it simplifies the measuring process and is not a change in the specification.

Lane inspectors also will be required to submit inspection applications signed by the inspector, association manager, and center representative to USBC national headquarters.

To ensure the accuracy of the data, USBC will allow a one-year grace period for center certification. Simply having a proper inspection of the bowling center and supplying the data to USBC Headquarters will allow the center to be certified for the 2018-2019 season. The data collected during these inspections will be analyzed to determine if additional improvements to the process will be needed for the 2019-2020 season. Of course, proprietors always will be encouraged to make needed repairs to their lanes.

Go to BOWL.com/EquipAndSpecs and click on Lane-Center Certifications to learn more and to view the complete Lane Certification Study.