BOB HILEMAN RECEIVES LANEMAN AWARD
Bob Hileman of Portage, Ind., who has worked in bowling for more than 40 years, was named recipient of the 2017 Jim Jaryszak Laneman Award at Bowl Expo.
First presented in 2011, the Jim Jaryszak Laneman Award recognizes a person for their behind-the-scenes work as a laneman. The winner is selected by the United States Bowling Congress Equipment Specifications and Certifications team from submitted nominations.
“It was a total surprise,” Hileman said. “I’m deeply honored and humbled at the same time. Jim Jaryszak and I were very good friends, and I miss him dearly. To have my name associated with all the lanemen in the world — Lenny Nicholson, John Davis, everyone — I’m quite honored. I can’t say enough.”
Hileman has been the laneman at Stardust Bowl II in Merrillville, Ind., for more than 35 years. He started his career at the center in the mid-1970s, hired as a porter when he was 15, but soon began his work behind the scenes. Wally Kucharski trained Hileman as a mechanic, and when Kucharski left the center in the late 1980s, Hileman assumed the job as head mechanic.
He was instrumental in running PBA national and regional events at Stardust Bowl, including the PBA Tour Trials. He is a three-time recipient of the Pat Patterson Award, which recognizes individual contributions toward the PBA Regional program.
“I’ve seen him helping out another laneman at a high school tournament, not at his center, when their lane machine broke down,” said Stephanie Cooley, coach of the Lake Central girls bowling team, who was one of two people to nominate Hileman. “He always does whatever he can to help. His knowledge is unsurpassed in the area of lane maintenance.”
The Jim Jaryszak Laneman Award is named in honor of the former USBC Research Manager, who passed away in late 2010. Jaryszak was instrumental in setting up the USBC Sport Bowling program and served as the point person when the PBA was updating its animal patterns.
JIM JARYSZAK AWARD RECIPIENTS
2011 — Len Nicholson
2012 — Sam Baca
2013 — John Davis
2014 — Steve Cross
2015 — Bill Cooley
2016 — John Forst
2017 — Bob Hileman
Bowling Proprietors, PBA Join Hands to Create Go Bowling! PBA Tour
Historic bowling industry partnership begins with GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX in December
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- In a landmark partnership between bowling organizations, the Professional Bowlers Association and Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America have announced that GoBowling.com will be the umbrella sponsor of the Go Bowling! PBA Tour between December 2017 and July 2018, with an option to renew for an additional year.
The partnership was announced by BPAA Executive Director Frank DeSocio, BPAA President Nancy Schenk and PBA CEO and Commissioner Tom Clark during International Bowl Expo in Nashville, Tenn.
As part of the partnership agreement, The Go Bowling! PBA Tour will be showcased on 18 ESPN telecasts, beginning with programming from the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IV in Reno in December, and extending through July 2018 to include five CBS Sports Network telecasts.
Additionally, The Go Bowling! PBA Tour will have a significant presence on at least eight PBA Xtra Frame Tour events in 2018, all of which will be live-streamed exclusively via PBA’s online bowling channel.
“This partnership gives GoBowling.com a full-year marketing platform to talk to bowlers and non-bowlers through the PBA Tour,” DeSocio said.
“The more people who go bowling, the more we all benefit,” Schenk added. “That’s what we’re looking to achieve.”
GoBowling.com, created by BPAA as the go-to website for millions of Americans looking for a place to go bowling, has been recently revamped to provide an even stronger connection between bowlers young and old, novice or professional, worldwide, providing news, tips, videos, contests and promotional offers as well as the sport’s most comprehensive guide to help people find information about more than 1,800 BPAA-member bowling centers across America.
“Working together with GoBowling.com, Strike Ten Entertainment and BPAA bowling centers to promote the PBA is great for the game and illustrates positive bowling industry unity,” Clark said. "We appreciate BPAA Executive Director Frank DeSocio, BPAA President Nancy Schenk and the entire board’s shared vision that investing in the PBA and promoting the sport together will make for a spectacular year.
"The PBA is experiencing an electrifying surge of young talent while the greats of the game continue to contend from event to event, making for interesting events and historic accomplishments on the lanes, Clark added. “We can’t wait to get started."
As part of the partnership, the Go Bowling! message will receive a wide variety of additional benefits, including:
• Commercial spots, billboards and signage during PBA telecasts and on all Xtra Frame events;
• Title sponsorship for two PBA Tour events to be determined, plus presenting sponsorship of the 2018 Chris Paul CP3 Celebrity Invitational;
• Sponsorship of a PBA League team;
• Logo identification on six top PBA Tour players;
• Introduction of a new Go Bowling! fan engagement segment during each telecast;
• Extensive exposure to mainstream news media and PBA’s global social media audience through all aspects of the PBA Network.
Another special benefit will be subscriptions to PBA’s Xtra Frame online video subscription service to any BPAA-member bowling center that requests a subscription, courtesy of Strike Ten Entertainment. The pre-paid subscriptions will allow participating bowling centers to provide their customers with hundreds of hours of exclusive programming, including preliminary rounds of all PBA and PWBA Tour events, start-to-finish coverage of the PBA50 Tour and PBA Xtra Frame Tour tournaments, and much more.
RECORD 4,000-PLUS SPOTS SOLD FOR JUNIOR GOLD CHAMPIONSHIPS; OPENING CEREMONY TO FEATURE CONCERT, NEW AWARDS
ARLINGTON, Texas – The Junior Gold program had another record year for membership and will see its largest field for the 2017 Junior Gold Championships presented by the Brands of Ebonite International this July in Cleveland, so it is only fitting this year’s Opening Ceremony add another level of excitement for the youth bowlers.
The Junior Gold Championships Opening Ceremony will take place Sunday, July 16, at the Cleveland Public Auditorium with doors opening at 7 p.m. In addition to a live concert from the fast-rising band Forever in Your Mind, also known as FIYM, the festivities will include presentations of the first Bowlers Choice Awards and the 2016-2017 Dexter All American Team, plus DJ Fuseamania will be on hand to provide music throughout the event.
Junior Gold membership is at an all-time high for the seventh consecutive year with 7,057 members. Heading into the Junior Gold Championships, which start Monday, July 17, with the first round of qualifying, more than 4,000 spots have been sold to set a record for participants at the annual tournament for the nation’s top youth bowlers.
“This is our opportunity to celebrate with the youth bowlers and their families by having an evening of fun and entertainment,” IBC Youth Development Managing Director Gary Brown said. “The Junior Gold program helped so many youth bowlers to develop their game and take that next step to college and beyond, and what better way to show the athletes and their families we appreciate their participation and support with an outstanding Opening Ceremony.”
The headline act for the Opening Ceremony, the group Forever in Your Mind, has drawn nearly 30 million views of videos from their debut EP. The trio’s new double-A-side Hollywood Records single, “Smooth” and “Missing,” was co-written by the band, with the songs tackling the mysteries of a relationship on the edge.
A new part of the Opening Ceremony will be the Bowlers Choice Awards – five fun awards designed to give youth bowlers the opportunity to express their personalities. The categories for the awards are Social King Award, Epic Swag Award, Selfie Queen Award, Breakout Star Award and Craziest Celebration Award.
Youth bowlers can visit BOWL.com/JuniorGoldOpeningCeremony for full details, including how to nominate themselves or fellow bowlers for the Bowlers Choice Awards. The entry deadline is June 23 and winners will receive an award, a gift certificate for an Ebonite bowling ball and much more.
In addition to the Junior Gold Championships that will take place July 15-22 at seven centers in the Cleveland area, the USA Bowling National Championships presented by Sixlets will be held July 19-22 and the Bowling.com Youth Open Championships will run July 13-14, 21-24 and 29-30, also in Cleveland.
The Junior Gold Championships will have its annual side events – the Survivor presented by Hammer on July 21-22 and the Adult-Youth Scratch Baker Doubles event from July 17-22.
For more information about the Junior Gold Championships presented by the Brands of Ebonite International plus the other youth tournaments, visit BOWL.com/YouthTournaments.
CAMBRIDGE CREDIT COUNSELING JOINS USBC MEMBER REWARDS PROGRAM
ARLINGTON, Texas - Cambridge Credit Counseling has joined the United States Bowling Congress Member Rewards program to offer USBC members ways to manage their credit card debt and student loan debt, plus many additional financial counseling services.
USBC members are eligible to receive discounts on Cambridge's services, including Debt Management Plans and student loan counseling, in an effort to help bowlers decrease their debt payments and become debt-free much faster than they could on their own.
"Much like getting a coach to help you improve in bowling, Cambridge can coach those who feel they are struggling to pay off student loans or credit card bills," said Cambridge President and CEO Christopher Viale. "We've got an amazing team of certified counselors who can offer assistance to USBC members for many of the financial issues they may be having, like credit card debt and student loan issues. Bowling is a big part of my life, so it's a great feeling to know that we'll be helping other bowlers improve their lives financially."
Cambridge is a non-profit agency that has been providing financial education and debt management services to consumers nationwide for over 20 years. In that time, they've expanded their menu of services to include student loan counseling, bankruptcy counseling, foreclosure intervention, and reverse mortgage counseling. Cambridge maintains an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, and they are rated 5 out of 5 stars on ConsumerAffairs.com, which is based solely on customer ratings.
Visit www.cambridge-credit.org for additional information.
"Cambridge offers services that could benefit a wide range of USBC members, an attribute we seek when evaluating potential companies for our Member Rewards program," said Tramon Thomas, Managing Director of Marketing and Affinity Partnerships. "We encourage USBC members to look at Cambridge and our other Member Rewards partners to learn how they can save on everyday goods and services."
Among its several offers for USBC members, Cambridge will provide a 20 percent discount on Debt Management Plan services.
Visit BOWL.com/MemberRewards for more information on Cambridge Credit Counseling and other offers for USBC members
Belmonte, Tackett and Lavoie Nominated for 2017 Best Bowler ESPY Award
Fan voting now open on ESPN.com
CHICAGO - Three of PBA’s standout performers over the past year – reigning GEICO Chris Schenkel PBA Player of the Year EJ Tackett, three-time Player of the Year Jason Belmonte, and 2016 Harry Golden PBA Rookie of the Year Francois Lavoie – have been nominated by ESPN for the 2017 Best Bowler ESPY Award.
The ESPYs honor excellence in sports performance and achievements in several categories over the past year, as decided in popular voting by fans. Voting is now open for bowling fans to choose their favorite by clicking on http://www.espn.com/espys/story/_/page/voting37/best-bowler
Awards will be announced Wednesday, July 12 during the ESPYs telecast in Los Angeles beginning at 8 p.m. EDT on ABC. Voting will be open until the start of the ESPYs telecast.
Belmonte, Australia’s two-handed star, is hoping for his third consecutive ESPY Award and fourth overall. After a strong season without winning a title in 2016, Belmonte reasserted his dominance in PBA Tour major championships early in 2017, winning a record fourth USBC Masters title and the Barbasol PBA Players Championship to bring his total to eight career majors. His 2016 season included five top-five finishes in the second half of 2016 including a fourth-place finish in the PBA World Championship.
Tackett was the dominant player in the second half of 2016, highlighted by his first major in the PBA World Championship. He continued his hot streak into 2017, winning his second major title in the 2017 FireLake PBA Tournament of Champions after capturing the DHC Japan Invitational title.
In 2016 Lavoie became the first Canadian to earn Rookie of the Year honors and the second Canadian to win a PBA Tour title. The Quebec City native not only won Bowling’s U.S. Open, but became the first player in the tournament’s history to bowl a nationally-televised 300 on his way to the win. He captured his second title in the 2016 PBA Shark Open, and his third early in 2017 in the PBA Xtra Frame Greater Jonesboro Open.
ESPY BEST BOWLER AWARD WINNERS
2016 – Jason Belmonte
2015 – Jason Belmonte
2014 - Pete Weber
2013 – Pete Weber
2012 – Sean Rash
2011 – Jason Belmonte
2010 – Walter Ray Williams Jr.
2009 – Norm Duke
2008 – Norm Duke
2007 – Norm Duke
2006 – Walter Ray Williams Jr.
2005 – Walter Ray Williams Jr.
2004 – Pete Weber
2003 – Walter Ray Williams Jr.
2002 – Pete Weber
2001 – Walter Ray Williams Jr.
2000 – Parker Bohn III
1999 – Walter Ray Williams Jr.
1998 – Walter Ray Williams Jr.
1997 – Bob Learn Jr.
1996 – Mike Aulby
1995 – Norm Duke
PBA Announces Ultimate Fan Experience Packages for GEICO WSOB IX
Reservations now available for WSOB players at Silver Legacy, Eldorado and Circus Circus properties
RENO, Nev. – The Professional Bowlers Association has announced new Ultimate WSOB Fan Experience Packages for fans who would like to watch the world’s greatest bowlers compete for nationally-televised titles in the sport’s premier showcase, the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX Nov. 17-19 at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno.
In addition to the special packages for fans, PBA and the Eldorado Resorts Reno Properties’ three properties – Silver Legacy, Eldorado and Circus Circus – have announced reservations are now being accepted for WSOB IX competitors.
The Ultimate Fan Experience Packages include a two-night “Strike” package and a three-night “300 Game” package. Prices depend on the accommodations each fan prefers, but the basics of each package include the following:
STRIKE PACKAGE (starting at $200)
• Two (2) nights’ accommodation at Silver Legacy Resort & Casino.
• Two VIP tickets to all ESPN shows including the PBA World Championship.
• Round trip transportation to and from the Reno-Tahoe International Airport and Silver Legacy.
300 GAME PACKAGE (starting at $340)
• Three (3) nights’ accommodation at Silver Legacy Resort & Casino.
• Two VIP tickets to all ESPN shows including the PBA World Championship.
• Behind the scenes tour of PBA Player Services Trucks and ESPN Production Truck.
• Official autographed PBA Tour bowling pin.
• Official WSOB t-shirt.
• Round trip transportation to and from the Reno-Tahoe International Airport and Silver Legacy.
GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling Ultimate Experience Fan packages are available at www.pba.com/tickets.
PBA members and others attending the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX Nov. 7-19 can now make standard room reservations at their choice of any of the three Eldorado Resorts Reno properties. Special room rates also are available not only to players, but to news media representatives, family members, fans, manufacturers and any other interested parties. Room rates, reservation code and telephone/online reservation contacts for each property are listed below.
Silver Legacy: Room rates: $50 Sunday–Thursday, $70 Friday & Saturday. Silver Legacy code ISPBA17. Reservations phone number: 800-687-8733. Online reservations: https://silverlegacyreno.reztrip.com/ext/promoRate?property=1080&mode=b&pm=true&sr=242404&vr=3&accessCode=ISPBA17
Eldorado: Room rates $50 Sunday–Thursday; $80 Friday & Saturday. Eldorado code IEPBA17. Reservations phone number: 800-879-8879. Online reservations: https://eldoradoreno.reztrip.com/ext/promoRate?property=1079&mode=b&pm=true&sr=242406&vr=3&accessCode=IEPBA17
Circus Circus: Room rates: $38 Sunday–Thursday; $60 Friday & Saturday. Circus Circus code ICPBA17. Reservations phone number: 800-648-5010. Online reservations: https://circusreno.reztrip.com/ext/promoRate?property=1081&mode=b&pm=true&sr=242416&vr=3&accessCode=ICPBA17
Entries into the World Series, which are available exclusively to PBA Members, will be accepted beginning July 10. Players will be asked to confirm their hotel reservations at the time of entry.
PBA’S INFLUENCE ON INTERNATIONAL BOWLING COMMUNITY CONTINUES TO GROW
Bowlers from around the world have always considered the PBA as the gold standard. If you wanted to find out how good you are, you had to bowl against – and beat – the world’s best. For decades, that was a difficult decision to make because the Fédération Internationale des Quilleurs, the international governing body in the eyes of the International Olympic Committee, banned professionals from its ranks.
That policy changed in 2008, when the World Tenpin Bowling Association (WTBA) – now World Bowling – became the official governing body of tenpin bowling and opened its doors to professionals in the hopes of advancing bowling’s hope to gain Olympic acceptance, meaning that international players would no longer jeopardize eligibility to repre-sent their national teams if the joined the PBA.
The introduction of the multi-event PBA World Series of Bowling concept a year later brought a veritable flood of international players into PBA competition. While notable players like PBA Tour champions Amleto Monacelli of Venezuela (1982), Sweden’s Mats Karlsson (1983) and Finland’s Mika Koivuniemi (1999), among a handful of others, had ventured into the PBA arena prior to 2008, the inaugural WSOB included an unprecedented 28 players from 14 different countries.
The WSOB has continued to welcome players from around the world. Since 2009, 38 different countries have been represented in the World Series, including a record 23 countries and 55 international players last year in Reno. The same sort of trend has had an impact of the recently-resurrected Professional Women’s Bowling Association Tour, which has featured a strong influx of international players.
In 2017, the PBA has seen international competition grow in events not previously known for global appeal, such as the Xtra Frame PBA Tour program and, this week, the Grand Casino Hotel & Resort Oklahoma Open, which includes 16 nations and 26 international players in its field of 91.
It’s an exciting trend for bowling, especially as the sport continues to seek the attention of the IOC and bowling manufacturers continue to expand their global markets. It’s good for bowling fans around the world, who can cheer for their home-country favorites thanks to the advent of Xtra Frame, pba.com and other social media outlets with world-wide accessibility. And it’s good for competition, because the level of talent in PBA competition has never been stronger, which only adds to the prestige of winning a PBA Tour title.