10 Park Lanes is the perfect place to take your kids bowling in Charlotte, NC. Get ready for a unique day of family fun.
When was the last time you went bowling? Funky retro shoes, glossy bowling balls, and illuminated pins on long wooden lanes. Few activities available for families today bring the same kind of nostalgia as a day at the bowling lanes.
It is our family New Year's Eve tradition to take the kids bowling at 10 Park Lanes near the Park Road Shopping Center. We started when the girls were little itty bitties and had so much fun we've gone back year after year.
I was a little worried our tweens were starting to get bored of the tradition so I tentatively tossed out alternative ideas for New Year's this year. I was relieved when they immediately shot it all down and said: "But what about bowling?? We ALWAYS go bowling for New Year's Eve!"
The power in tradition is having a special activity your entire family can look forward to again and again. It provides a safe sense of routine during an otherwise crazy holiday season.
Where is the best bowling in Charlotte?:
Our favorite place to go bowling in Charlotte is definitely 10 Park Lanes. They are located near the Park Road Shopping Center at 1700 Montford Dr. Charlotte, NC 28209.
Plan your bowling session ahead of time:
You can reserve a lane 24 hours in advance by calling ahead. For peak holiday times you'll definitely want to call ahead but during the rest of the year, they have open bowling during the weekends.
Get their current hours, special events schedule, and phone number on the 10 Park Lanes website here.
How old do kids have to be to go bowling?
I was pleasantly surprised to see how welcome kids of almost all ages are at the bowling alley. Every time we go, we see families with kids of a wide variety of ages at the bowling lanes. Here are some tips to make sure the kids have as much fun as possible:
Kids under 5:
We've seen the littlest of kids using hysterical dinosaur-shaped bowling ball ramps at the lanes. They slide along the floor and can be used just during the kids' turn. You aim the dinosaur at the bowling lane, put the ball on top of the ramp, and the child can just release the ball down the track towards the pins. Perfect for the littlest bowlers.
Kids ages 5 - 12:
Use the gutter bumpers! We love that 10 Park Lanes has automatic gutter bumpers you can set for just the kids' frames during the game. The scoring screen knows when it is the kids' turn and the bumpers come up.
When it is the adults' turn to play, the bumpers go back down. Our girls have been using them since age 5 and our teen is just now trying to play without the automatic bumpers.
10 reasons to take your kids bowling at 10 Park Lanes in Charlotte, NC:
1. They're better bowlers than you think:
Now that you know about the gutter bumpers and dinosaur ramps, there's really no excuse for keeping your kids away from bowling. Our girls have actually beat us at some games using the kid-friendly tools at the bowling alley. Nothing tickles them more than winning over mom & dad.
2. Competitive fun for everyone:
Few activities even the playing field between kids and adults as well as bowling. With the automatic score screen keeping track of each frame, the kids love watching everyone's points grow over the course of the game.
3. Matching shoes for the family:
When do you have the chance to sport matching shoes with your kids?? You may not find this funny, but I guarantee the kids will. Bowling shoes are universally hysterical.
4. 10 Park Lanes has awesome food:
Seriously, the food is good enough to go and just eat in their restaurant. Our favorites are:
- fried mac and cheese rollers
- soft pretzel bites
- shredded pork sliders
- philly cheesesteak flatbread
You'll find lots of southern food options, but definitely check out their mason jar meals--layers of food served in a mason jar for a super-fun presentation.
5. Lane-side service for drinks and snacks:
We usually bowl for 2 hours and can fit about 3 games in during that time. It's easy to build up an appetite with all that fun so we especially love that 10 Park Lanes has lane-side service for beverages and food. Their servers will bring everything right to you so you don't miss a moment.
Each lane has a small table near your seats where you can set some food and drinks down to nibble on between your frames. We'll get a few appetizers to share while playing but then often sit down at their restaurant for the full meal after we're done playing for the day.
6. Screen-free family fun:
Bowling is the perfect screen-free activity for families but the scoreboards at 10 Park Lanes are perfect for technology-obsessed kids. Fun animations pop up depending on the score from each player during each frame.
Our kids loved running back after each turn to see what might pop up on the scoreboard animation.
7. Old school vibe:
I love the nostalgia factor at 10 Park Lanes. Unlike sleek, new modern facilities, this bowling alley reminds me of the kind of places my parents would take me as a kid. It has such a warmer feel that adds to the festive specialness of our annual visits.
8. Pay by the hour, not the game:
Our family loves knowing that the faster you play, the more game you get out of our visit. It adds a slightly more competitive edge to hustle along to squeeze in as many rounds as we can in our purchased time allotment.
9. Plenty of ball sizes and weights for everyone:
Our kids have grown up over the years we've been bowling, but they've never struggled finding just the right ball for their current size and strength. 10 Park Lanes has rows upon rows of bowling balls for everyone to choose from in a wide variety of sizes and weights.
10. Bowling is the perfect activity to all act goofy together:
Teach your kids the art of light-hearted smack talk. See who can bowl with the funniest walk-up. Aim the ball with a potty shot. Twirl and skip back to the seats after your toss.
Bowling for our family has turned into a non-stop laugh fest over the crazy antics we all do when taking our turn. The girls especially love watching daddy flex his muscles and do arm pumps after great shots.
Bring your own flair to the game and make memories with your family that the kids will remember forever.