Estevan Bowl hasn’t had any league play since November due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but it’s still a place where people can come and enjoy open bowling.
Owner Dave Rosenbaum said there are some restrictions, so social distancing is required between groups. Lanes 1 and 4 are open for 10-pin bowling, and 7 and 10 can be used for five-pin bowling.
“We can have up to four people on a lane,” said Rosenbaum. “Each lane has their own table for the bowlers to sit at when they’re not bowling.”
Open bowling is available starting at 4 p.m. on weekdays and 1 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.
“We get lots of bookings for what we can take,” said Rosenbaum.
He asks that people phone ahead and book a lane because of their reduced capacity, especially on Friday evenings and on weekends. Their quietest days are typically from Monday to Wednesday.
The customers have been very understanding about the rules and regulations that Estevan Bowl has to operate under, including masks and social distancing.
League numbers were close to previous years before they were shut down at the end of November. While the provincial government has extended restrictions on activities such as leagues for team sports until March 19, Rosenbaum said they hope league bowlers are patient and would come back if given the chance to resume play.
“Lots of league bowlers that we talk to are anxious to come back,” said Rosenbaum.
League play would traditionally wrap up at the end of April, which would mean Estevan Bowl would have a short schedule to finish the season if the provincial government allows leagues to resume next month. If the majority of bowlers wanted to play into May or June, then Estevan Bowl would accommodate those wishes.
As for the other parts of their operations, the EB’s restaurant is open for meals, but they have to do social distancing between tables. Their take-out food operation is doing well, and they have pickup available for customers.
VLTs are open as well, but food or drink is not allowed in the VLT lounge.
Rosenbaum said they would traditionally be really busy with leagues, alley bookings, restaurants and catering. Even when they’re at capacity, it doesn’t seem as busy as they would normally be.
“We’re not going to shut our doors or anything like that,” said Rosenbaum. “We’re going to stay open and we’re going to live through all of this and hopefully get back to normal in the next few months.”