Get a peek behind the lanes on bowling alley tour - East Valley Tribune: Events

Get a peek behind the lanes on bowling alley tour

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Posted: Sunday, June 16, 2013 7:30 am

Bowling alleys may hold zero mystique for you now, but as a kid, I’ll bet you peered down a lane just once, to the apparatus that swept the pins away and set up new ones, wondering what was back there and if any workers ever fell in and got squished, only to be discovered after it was too late.

Or was that just me?

That veil can be lifted Tuesday mornings through July at FlipSide in Gilbert. The free Behind the Lanes Tour takes kids and parents on an hourlong foray into the inner workings of the bowling alley, from experiencing firsthand the difference between an oiled and un-oiled lane to examining a bowling ball and pin that have been chopped in half, so you can see how the materials inside contribute to the objects’ function.

“We take them back behind the full-size lanes and show them the pin setter as it’s working. If we have enough kids, we have some of them bowl and some go behind, and then switch, so they can see how it all works as balls are coming in and pins are getting knocked out,” says FlipSide spokeswoman Nikki Erickson.

When you’re done, the 50,000-square-foot venue offers plenty of other things to do, combining laser tag, billiards, a squishy maze, bumper cars and an arcade with a cafe and coffee shop.

DETAILS >> 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Tuesdays in June and July. FlipSide, 4874 S. Val Vista Drive, Gilbert. Free, but call to reserve a spot. (480) 471-8444 or

Dads get freebies on Sunday, June 16, at FlipSide, including one bowling game and shoe rental, one unlimited attractions wristband and one free burger or salad.

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