Bowling for dollarsPublished 9:32am Saturday, February 16, 2013
BY ANDREW FAISON/CONTRIBUTING WRITER
FRANKLIN—Dan Howe will give it another shot.
During last year’s annual Bowl-A-Thon in Franklin, Howe fell four strikes short of a perfect game and $5,000. The Rotary Club of Franklin and Paul D. Camp Community College Regional Workforce Development Center will offer the same prize during the Saturday, Feb. 23, Bowl-A-Thon at Franklin Bowling Center.
“That prize certainly grabs people’s interest,” said Howe, a Franklin Rotary member. “I am looking forward to competing next Saturday. It’s a good event to raise money for local charities.”
Chances of bowling a perfect game are 1 in 5,000, said Franklin Bowling Center owner Chuck Guynn. Guynn has not seen a 300 game in more than a month at the bowling alley, where 150 to 200 games are played daily.
“Conditions have to be just right, as well a bowler has to bowl continuous strikes for 13 frames,” he said.
Should someone win the $5,000, event hosts won’t be out a cent.
“We have several anonymous donors that offer the funds for the cash prize,” said Michael Clark, event chairman. “That payout will not affect the contribution to the charities.”
The $5,000 offered last year for the first time raised the level of excitement, Clark said.
“We did it for a two-fold reason,” he said. “We did it to bring in local league bowlers as well as stir up the level of competition among our regular supporters. Both are to raise more money for the community.”
More than 100 bowlers raised over $18,000 last year for charities like the Franklin Boys & Girls Club, Franklin Cooperative Ministries, Southampton/Franklin Habitat for Humanity and Franklin-Southampton Area United Way.
“While no bowler was lucky enough to bowl a perfect game last year, we did have several come close,” Clark said.
Howe came the closest, maintaining a perfect game until the eighth frame.
“It was exciting,” said the executive director of the Downtown Franklin Association, who bowls once a year. “That was the closest I have ever come to bowling a perfect game.”
He finished the game with a 279.
“As I was bowling I got a kick out of my fellow Rotarians sweating about possibly having to payout that prize more than anything else,” Howe said.
Howe would have donated the money to the Rotary to give to charities or a scholarship.
There are 18, five-person teams so far. The deadline to sign up is Wednesday, Feb. 20; call 562-3135 to register. Cost is $125 per bowler or $625 for a team.