Bowling event benefits The Arc of Carroll County
|Darlene Lowman bumps fists with Janet Thomas and Bill Oppitz at The Arc's first Bowling Ball on Sunday|
Carroll County Times
Fred Lund used the words "disappointed," "terrible" and "struggling" to describe his bowling game during a competition Sunday. Lund, a client of The Arc of Carroll County, was on the team The Winners, but he said he felt like the opposite. "I'm having an off day," Lund, 54, said. "I can't concentrate."
The Arc of Carroll County, which supports people with developmental disabilities, held its inaugural Bowling Ball competition Sunday at Thunderhead Bowl and Grill in Taneytown. Lisa Albin, Director of Development for The Arc, said 14, four-member teams registered to participate in the friendly competition. The three teams with the highest combined scores over the course of two hours were awarded trophies.
Despite Lund's frustrations, he said he still had fun with his family, friends and teammates at the glow-in-the-dark bowling competition.
The event was established for Arc clients to enjoy time with their families and friends and to raise money for Arc programs and services. The goal was to raise $5,000, and Albin was sure it would come close to that figure. Albin said she's hoping to make the bowling competition an annual event after Sunday's success.
Bowlers were encouraged, but not required, to dress in formal attire. Most of the 14 teams wore creative uniforms.
The Winners, consisting of Lund, Arc client Darlene Lowman, Bill Oppitz and Janet Thomas, were clad in tuxedo T-shirts with red or blue clip-on bowties.
Lund's sister, Thomas, of Glen Rock, PA., said she takes Lund and Lowman bowling once a week because it's been their favorite thing to do for the past 12 years. The couple has their own custom bowling balls, bags and shoes, and whether they're bowling for fun, practice or in competition, they take it seriously, she said. "They're diehards," Thomas said. "They're not happy when they don't do well."
As music blared through the speakers, the teams rolled bowling balls down the glowing lanes in the dark bowling alley. Cheers and rounds of applause could be heard each time pins fell down.
The Pawn Stars' attire matched the bright red, blue and yellow lights glowing on the lanes. Casey Rowe, 11, created the team's shirts using various glow-in-the-dark paints. Rowe drew bowling balls, pins and the team's name on each shirt. He said he wanted to display team spirit. "I wanted every one of my teammates to stand out and look unique," Rowe said.
A few lanes over was The J Team, consisting of members whose names all began with "J." Jono Contestabile, 17, said he was having a blast at the event. "I love it," he said, before taking a turn. Contestabile said he wasn't expecting to roll many strikes, but he was confident his father, John, would because he was the team's best bowler. "I may be the best one out of a pretty poor group," John, 54, joked.
Halfway through the event, Lund said he was feeling better about his performance. He bowled a few spares, and his teammate, Lowman, rolled a few strikes. "We're coming back," Lowman said.
At the end of the event, a raffle was held and winners were given gift cards to various businesses including Subway, Olive Garden and Walmart. Shortly after the raffle, an awards ceremony was held to congratulate the top three teams. Each team member received a trophy. Lucky Strikes, which consisted of four employees from Transitions Healthcare in Sykesville, placed third with 1,008 points; The Pawn Stars placed second with 1,258; and The Winners placed first with 1,410 points.
Rowe said he was surprised his team did so well because he only averages one strike every 100 years. He credited his father, Don Rowe, Executive Director of The Arc, for bowling enough strikes to carry his team. Rowe said he was happy to come in second place, but he was more excited that the event was a success and everyone had fun. "We had a lot of support," Rowe said. "It was good for our first time, and it's good to do something with our clients' families."
Though he had doubts at the beginning of the competition, Lund said he wasn't too surprised by the end results. "It feels great," Lund said of winning first place. "I knew it all along."