Sports and Recreation

Four Great Bowling Alleys in the Washington DC Area

The Washington DC area obviously has a lot to offer. It is clearly one of the top tourist destinations in the United States for Americans and visitors from abroad. Millions come each year to tour historical landmarks, tour famous buildings and museums, enjoy Broadway caliber shows and eat in great restaurants.

Washington DC conjures up famous images and provokes deep thought and affection for the country’s past, present and future. One thing that tourists will tend to forget, of course, is that the people who actually live in the Washington DC area have lives that aren’t much different than any other area of the country. As a New Yorker, I know that when I speak with non-New Yorkers, they often assume that I must go to Broadway plays each week, visit the Statue of Liberty regularly and hang out in Times Square. Well, actually, not so much.

When people think of Washington DC, they are usually not thinking of bowling. But as with the rest of the country, bowling has not only maintained its widespread popularity in Washington DC, it has also become a fashionable and even trendy pursuit. So while laws are being made, while the President negotiates with world leaders, and while lobbyists are found in all sorts of places (such as Washington DC strip joints which I have reviewed on this link), most of the citizens of Washington DC go about their work, family and recreational pursuits.

The following is a list and review of the four best bowling alleys in the Washington DC area.

US Bowling

100 South Pickett Street

Alexandria, Virginia

Well, if you are going to have a bowling alley in the Washington DC area, why shouldn’t it be named US Bowling? US Bowling is one of those bowling alleys that straddles the line between an old fashioned (albeit modern) bowling alley and the new “nightclub” bowling alleys. It does both well as those looking for straight ahead bowling with excellent facilities and equipment will certainly get it here while those looking for an overall ‘experience’ can take advantage of the Cosmic Bowling program, which uses a modern sound system and light show, running Friday and Saturday nights from 9:00PM to 2:00AM.

Of note is that the US Bowling is a stop in the Amateur Bowling Tour as well as National Amateur Bowlers Inc. US Bowling also has summer leagues, youth bowling and bowling tournaments. US Bowling also offers packages for events such as corporate outings, birthday parties and bachelor parties.

Bowlmor Strike

5353 Westbard Avenue

Bethesda, Maryland

Bowlmor Strike is the pioneer of nightclub bowling and the Washington DC version certainly does not disappoint.

What other bowling alley would say that bowling there will result in “total sensory overload”?

Bowlmor Strike features a state of the art sound system, glow in the dark bowling, an eleven (ELEVEN!) page menu, and cocktails as exotic as coconut mojitos, fuji apple martinis and bubble gum shooters.

For food, forget the hot dogs and stale pizza so often associated with old time bowling alleys and think about the

Grilled Atlantic Salmon Filet, the Grilled Rack of Lamb and the delicious Lobster Ravioli.

As you might imagine, the Bowlmor Strike bowling alley in Washington DC is a place where people go to bowl, hang out, people watch, and party, but not necessarily in that order. It’s a great location for birthday parties of all ages, corporate outings and bachelor parties.

Marlow Heights Lanes

4717 Saint Barnabas Road

Temple Hills, Maryland

As Marlow Heights is an AMF bowling center, Washington DC area bowlers know what to expect. It will be a clean facility with the best equipment, friendly service and reasonable prices.

This is a child friendly place as it features bumper bowling, arcade games, birthday party packages and a good food selection. For adults, there are bowling leagues, Xtreme bowling at night and corporate outing packages.

Lucky Strike Lanes

701 7th Street Northwest

Washington DC

Lucky Strike Lanes is like walking into a time machine to a grander era. The lanes and facilities are all first rate but the furnishing and artwork suggest the golden age of Hollywood, not Washington DC.

The food here is good, the staff is friendly and the bowling terrific. Lucky Strike Lanes has fun promotions (such as ‘green pin bowling where you have the chance to win a free game with a strike when you see a green pin), and free game of bowling included in your lunch during the week.

These bowling alleys can provide a great diversion from day to day life and the politics that are always in the air in Washington DC. You should also consider getting yourself a best bowling ball, a good bowling ball is going to help you do better while playing. There are several affordable bowling balls that you can get online and impress your friends.