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Duckpin bowling: A quirky pasttime

The bowling balls are tiny and the alleys scuffed, but duckpin bowling sure is fun.
The bowling balls are tiny and the alleys scuffed, but duckpin bowling sure is fun.
Photo by Daniel Dougan

Just to the southeast of downtown Indianapolis sits the historic Fountain Square neighborhood. The once-blighted neighborhood is undergoing a major revitalization. In fact, even the fountain itself is changing.

Atomic Bowl Duckpin and Action Duckpin Bowl & Banquet Center - two alleys in the same building - have remained virtually unchanged from decades past...or so it appears.

Even though the bowling equipment is vintage (ranging from the 1930s through the 1960s), the bowling alleys opened in the 1990s as a reuse for the space in the old Fountain Square Theatre Building. Between the two alleys you can find 15 lanes of miniature bowling pins and throwback decor.

Even though duckpin bowling sounds as if it's an easy game for children, the reality is that it's a lot more difficult than regular bowling because the pins and the balls are smaller. (The only consolation is that you get to throw three balls per frame instead of two.)

Duckpin bowling is a great event for large groups because instead of paying by the game, you pay $30 per hour. The experts estimate that a group of five can complete one game in one hour in a single lane...but the faster you go the more games you can play for your buck.

To try duckpin bowling for yourself visit:

Action & Atomic Duckpin Bowling

1105 E. Prospect Street

Indianapolis, IN 46203

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