Every year before summer arrives, I post the information about the Kids Bowl Free program. Yet, oddly, my family had never participated. We are bowlers and my husband and I have had our own bowling ball and shoes for probably 15 years now. But I just never signed up for the program. Until this summer.
This year we decided to take advantage of the program, signing both kids up. We also bought the $25 pass, giving my husband and I the ability to bowl two games with the them, each time they bowled. Rather than put out the $4 for shoe rental each time, I found kids bowling shoes online for around $20 each, and bought them both a pair. To stretch it even further, I bought their shoes one size larger, so they can use them next year, too.
Over the course of the summer, both kids ended up finding lightweight bowling balls at thrift stores, for around $2-3 each. They were in good condition and they liked them better than the kids' balls in the bowling alley. Now they both have their own shoes and ball to use. We are all hooked up when we go into bowl.
I love that the Kids Bowl Free program allows you to pull the coupon up on your phone and use it, so you never have to worry about having the paper version. Although we have the equipment we need, we do end up spending a few dollars each time we go, either on drinks, snacks, or playing songs from the "jukebox." We could avoid this, but since everything else is covered, we don't mind putting out a few dollars. For less than a few bucks each time we go in, the whole family bowls two games. We have bowled may times throughout the summer and will get numerous more times in before this year's program finishes up at the end of September.
The Kids Bowl Free program is a great program for kids and families. It's something even the smaller kids can do, because they do have bumper bowling (something my kids have always refused). The program gives the kids a chance to bowl all summer, and for a small investment, parents can bowl, too. This is a program we will be doing every year until the kid age out of it (15). It's cost effective, fun, and introduces them to bowling. Plus, it's indoors, so on a hot summer day it's a great way to spend a couple of hours.
I you haven't tried Kids Bowl Free it's not too late. The program is still going on for this year, and you can always be sure to participate next year, too!
- Jacqueline Bodnar