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We are always looking for things for our entire family to do that will entertain and engage all four of my kids whose ages range from 11-3 years old. Not always an easy task, as one might imagine…
We hit the jackpot however, when we heard that Brooks Street Bowl, the new bowling alley in Wake Forest, had opened for business. I packed up my four (plus two extra kids who were also tracked out) and headed to the old shopping plaza downtown on Brooks Street, that has undergone a complete transformation over the last several years. I keep saying that Wake Forest is ripe and ready for people to discover and now Brooks Street Bowl is just one more reason to head downtown and see why.
Brooks Street Bowl has a cozy, vintage feel to it. Most of the wood, including the bar top is reclaimed from old bowling alleys, which give the place a great, hip character. There are televisions for watching sports while you bowl, which came in handy last Friday when I took my kids and husband back for a family night out (there was college football on for Pete’s sake!!), a few video arcade games, and they have a bar where you can purchase light snacks and beverages, including beer (draft, bottled, and many craft beers are available) and wine. I settled on a Bell’s Brown Ale draft from my favorite Michigan Brewery as I slid into my bowling shoes… A little something for everyone I thought to myself…
When I took the kids there the first time, owner Doug Pearce, happened to stop by. As I chatted with him, he emphasized that they were planning on running a tight ship, keeping it fun and attractive for adults but appropriate for families with kids to come on in as well. The management team is discussing different kinds of specials they’d like to run for students and families in the future and they are considering options for expanding their kitchen. All in all, he and the management team that I spoke with seem excited, open to input and suggestions, and eager to get folks in to see what they’re all about.
I took a peek at the Party Room, which has a small serving/wet bar as well as a small dance floor and “DJ Booth” where you can hook up an ipod for your choice of tunes. The Party Room is available for rental by the hour and they put on birthday parties for kids as well.
The night we went as a family, was a Friday. I had called earlier and reserved a lane for an hour, which turned out to be good planning as all 8 lanes were occupied when we arrived. What was fantastic to see is that the crowd consisted primarily of families with a few couples also having a night out. We bowled a full game, nearly everyone got a strike, or at least a spare – thanks to some well placed Lane Bumpers – and everyone wanted to play again when our hour was up, but as Saturday morning activites start early, we turned in our shoes and settled up the tab.
It’s always good to leave ‘em wanting more…