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#188909 - 10/14/14 10:01 AM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: Atochabsh]
SteveH Offline
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Registered: 12/09/12
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A/S/L: 62/M/Burlington VT
That's why in many markets, centers are going after more upscale clientele. If their current lower rates are not drawing business, they'll simply target those less impacted by higher rates with better food, bars, and other entertainment.

Should be noted that laser rage is a huge, and profitable draw. I was surprised as well, but it's true. Not only that, laser rage is more expensive than bowling.
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#191576 - 06/05/15 10:28 PM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: SteveH]
Mkirchie Offline
Hall of Famer Contender

Registered: 01/14/07
Posts: 803
A/S/L: 38/M/New Jersey
Originally Posted By: SteveH
That's why in many markets, centers are going after more upscale clientele. If their current lower rates are not drawing business, they'll simply target those less impacted by higher rates with better food, bars, and other entertainment.

Should be noted that laser rage is a huge, and profitable draw. I was surprised as well, but it's true. Not only that, laser rage is more expensive than bowling.

I just learned today that one of the most popular independently owned centers in my area is doing a full blown remodel over the summer. The leagues there are more popular than where I bowl. I originally thought that they might just be redoing the lanes and some other updating but they're going the boutique center route with a restaurant, VIP lanes, laser tag, and a redemption arcade that I figure will take up a lot of space. They've said that they need to get more business. It is/was a 34 lane center, I'm almost sure that it will be less when they are done. Not sure what impact this will have on their leagues, but I can't imagine that it will be good. I'll have to ask around next time I'm at my center.

Mark
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#191580 - 06/06/15 11:34 AM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: Atochabsh]
SteveH Offline
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Registered: 12/09/12
Posts: 766
A/S/L: 62/M/Burlington VT
A trend in some areas for sure. League bowlers have put a I'm Cheap sign on their foreheads, a red flag to proprietors looking to pay ever-increasing bills. Our league fought hard against a $1 lineage increase. Now we have laser tag, bar/grill and all of that. The only proprietors that can afford cheap league bowlers are the ones that have owned their centers for decades.

Not a good omen for the future.
_________________________
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#191581 - 06/06/15 11:54 AM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: SteveH]
Mkirchie Offline
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Registered: 01/14/07
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A/S/L: 38/M/New Jersey
Originally Posted By: SteveH
The only proprietors that can afford cheap league bowlers are the ones that have owned their centers for decades.

Not a good omen for the future.

This center is 56 years old and still owned by the same family but was built by the grandfather. I'm really shocked to see this happening there. It really has me feeling very worried about the future of the sport.

Mark
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#191582 - 06/06/15 05:03 PM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: Atochabsh]
SteveH Offline
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Registered: 12/09/12
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A/S/L: 62/M/Burlington VT
Huge advantage owning it for that long. Most old centers never saved any money for reinvestment, and thus close when their equipment breaks down, or customers just stop going in.

I'll bet most old-time league bowlers thought their reign would last forever. A great competitive atmospheres that was always cheap, and the proprietors just delighted to have them. Some got fairly wealthy as their centers ran down, others were smarter and maintained them and upgraded.

Most league bowlers seem to have balked at higher rates, and eventually become a burden on centers, not an asset. Many family-owned centers cannot convince the younger generations to work all the time for the rest of their lives, turn down a couple of million of dollars or more to make peanuts. Some look around, do the math, and look for ways to make up for their lack of bowling profits.

Everyone concerned about the sport needs to realize it takes a lot of investment and expenses to keep it alive. If the bowlers aren't prepared to pay the rates, the proprietors will find a customer base that can. Or, simply pocket the money and sell it off for a shopping center or parking lot. McDonalds doesn't pay people $2 an hour anymore either, and gas is not 25 cents a gallon.

Another issue is interest in bowling. We can't find two bowlers to fill our team for the two that are moving. Our summer league has four teams.
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#191584 - 06/07/15 07:48 AM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: BOSStull]
BOSStull Offline
2x Virtual League Champion

Registered: 10/15/11
Posts: 1166
A/S/L: 62/M /Georgia
Originally Posted By: BOSStull
It is going to be interesting to see what AMF or Brunswick Zones will close in the near future. My Brunswick Zone competes with the AMF center 7 miles from my center. My guess would be the AMF center is not going to be around much longer.
Well been almost a year and both are still here

Originally Posted By: SteveH
A trend in some areas for sure. League bowlers have put a I'm Cheap sign on their foreheads, a red flag to proprietors looking to pay ever-increasing bills. Our league fought hard against a $1 lineage increase. Now we have laser tag, bar/grill and all of that. The only proprietors that can afford cheap league bowlers are the ones that have owned their centers for decades.

Not a good omen for the future.
Well our center raised lineage $1 and I did not here one complaint from the 30 teams bowling in the summer league.

My Brunswick Center may be an exception to the rule but there has not been any drastic changes since it was acquired by BOWLMOR. One of the reasons may be the league participation. During the fall/winter leagues weekday leagues are almost a full house. If you add the lineage and money spent for food and drinks that adds up to a lot of guaranteed dollars for our 40 lane center. There is no doubt that BOWLMOR sees the value in league bowlers and as long as this center keeps embracing league play I will continue to bowl there.
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#191585 - 06/07/15 08:53 AM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: BOSStull]
Mkirchie Offline
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Registered: 01/14/07
Posts: 803
A/S/L: 38/M/New Jersey
Originally Posted By: BOSStull
Well our center raised lineage $1 and I did not here one complaint from the 30 teams bowling in the summer league.

Don't know about leagues at the other center, but I've had the same experience in my league. In my league, every time we've been informed of a lineage increase, we've always voted to raise how much we pay a week for league. What we pay has increased by about 50% over 11 years.

Originally Posted By: BOSStull
One of the reasons may be the league participation. During the fall/winter leagues weekday leagues are almost a full house. If you add the lineage and money spent for food and drinks that adds up to a lot of guaranteed dollars for our 40 lane center.

That's also what surprises me as their league participation is very healthy. Where I regularly bowl and another house are likely to see a bump in leagues if they alienate their league bowlers after the remodel. The other center that can take overflow is a very popular 24 lane center, so they probably don't have a lot of space in their leagues either but where I bowl does have space for leagues to grow.

Also, this center that's making these changes had done a decent amount of updates over the years. They had synthetics since the mid 90's and had a nice scoring system with flat screens including a third screen every other pair for watching TV. The furniture needed to updated and it could have used some repainting, but it wasn't stuck in the past.

Mark
_________________________
Current Average - 225
HG-300(12)
HS-789

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#191587 - 06/07/15 10:15 AM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: Mkirchie]
BOSStull Offline
2x Virtual League Champion

Registered: 10/15/11
Posts: 1166
A/S/L: 62/M /Georgia


Mark our center was actually a beneficiary of another BRUNSWICK remodel about 12 miles away last summer. Many of their league bowlers migrated to our house. I can see why you are worried about your center remodeling. The center here removed 6 lanes from the 40 they had to add a restaurant but did not add laser tag or an arcade area. In the process they also wiped out the Pro Shop. They do have leagues at the remodeled one but not to the extent they had before the remodel. A lot of the league bowlers did not go back.
_________________________
Current Bag 16lbs
Storm: Hy-Road,Hy-Road Nano,Intense,Son!Q
L/M Legends: New Standard, Yeah Baby

"Let me bowl or let me die"

HG 300,
HS 811
https://www.pinterest.com/bosstull/

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#191589 - 06/07/15 01:17 PM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: BOSStull]
Mkirchie Offline
Hall of Famer Contender

Registered: 01/14/07
Posts: 803
A/S/L: 38/M/New Jersey
Fortunately, I don't bowl regularly at the center that is remodeling and I'm pretty sure my regular center runs a good chance of picking up bowlers from the one that is remodeling. We've had a new manager for a few years now who also runs our Pro Shop. Furniture was updated two years ago and they have installed video projectors and screens for the laser light nights. They also are running more tournaments and they have an equipment demo day every year. It seems to me that they're trying to keep both groups of bowlers happy at my regular center, which is the way I feel it should be.

Mark
_________________________
Current Average - 225
HG-300(12)
HS-789

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#195842 - 11/10/16 08:49 AM Re: what will become of AMF [Re: Mkirchie]
Mkirchie Offline
Hall of Famer Contender

Registered: 01/14/07
Posts: 803
A/S/L: 38/M/New Jersey
I know I'm digging up a post, but I felt this would be better here than making a new post. I didn't know about this happening at Carolier until a few weeks ago, I don't live in this part of NJ so I didn't know until I saw something online about it. Although they only did lanes 1-48 and 49-82 were not touched, I never thought this would happen here.

http://www.nj.com/somerset/index.ssf/201...#incart_m-rpt-2

It seems like leagues are to be relegated to 49-82, which was always the less popular part of the center and limits leagues. In the first article I found a few weeks ago, I read that they can still host tournaments that use the whole house.

Mark
_________________________
Current Average - 225
HG-300(12)
HS-789

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