Monday, December 13, 2010

Local bowling alleys provide quality pizza for affordable price

With winter time approaching, more people are finding ways to entertain themselves indoors. Bowling Green resident, Samuel Jenkins, likes to spend time at Varsity Lanes bowling alley to ease some of the winter time blues.

"It's a laid back place," Jenkins said. "I like to bowl, drink and eat pizza. Varsity Lanes is the perfect spot for me to unwind after a hard days work."

Located at 1033 South Main Street, Varsity Lanes has been owned and operated by Gary Richardson since 1962. He said Varsity Lanes was a roller rink before his father, Gary Senior, decided to invest in a new proposition.

"The older folks in town always knew this place as "Skate World," but when my dad turned it into a bowling alley, we got a better response,"Richardson said. "Add pizza and beer to the mix and you got a guaranteed good time."

Varsity Lanes gets it's pizza from a company in Tampa, Florida called Perky's Pizza. Perky's supplies frozen pizza to establishments all over the world. Varsity Lanes orders 10 cases of frozen dough a week to keep up with demands.

"We've always used Perky's Pizza and for the most part, it seems like the people really like it," Richardson said. "We order the thick crust, the basic cheese, pepperoni and supreme."

Varsity Lanes uses a pizza rotisserie to ensure quality freshness. The slow cooking time gives the pizza a blend of salty and sweetness.

"I eat the pizza on Wednesday because they got a good special," Jenkins said. "You get a medium cheese and a 12oz beer for $5."

Varsity Lanes retro atmosphere gives the bowling alley a 1950's feel. The checkered floor and milk shake machine gives the establishment a charming appearance.

"Simplicity is best," Richardson said. "We've been doing things the same since my dad owned the place. We got to keep up with the competition across town."

Located at 1010 North Main Street, Al Mar Lanes has been a Bowling Green venue since 1978. Equipped with a full bar and and arcade room, the fluorescent colors at Al Mar give the bowling alley a more modern feel.

"The owner really likes to redecorate,"said Nate Henschen, manager of Al Mar. "We try to use lights and neon colors to give the lanes a youthful feel."

With a full service walk-up diner, Al Mar also carries Pisanello's Pizza, another Bowling Green pizzeria. With prices ranging from $3.25 to $14.99, Al Mar cooks the pre-made pizza in a cast iron stove, giving the thin crust a light, crispy taste. Unfortunately, Al Mar's topping options are limited to only cheese or pepperoni.

"We would like to incorporate different topping options, but we want to support another Bowling Green business," Henschen said. "That's why we order our pizza from Pisanello's, for the good of the community."

Both Varsity Lanes and Al Mar carry birthday party specials. Members of the birthday club receive a free piece of pizza for everyone at the party. For other weekly specials, grab a slice of pie at Al Mar or Varsity Lanes.

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