Pins and Pinot Noir Planned for California’s Sonoma Valley

by Bob Johnson 0

Highway 12 is the highest traffic corridor in California’s Sonoma Valley, and it soon may be home to a new bowling center inside an existing building that’s appropriately named “The Old Bowl Centre.”

According to the Sonoma Index-Tribune, Adam and Jenny Kovacs are planning to transform a 5,000-sq.-ft. space in the center into a bowling center with “four or five lanes” to be called Noma Bowl. They have signed a 15-year lease with a Seattle-based management company that has owned the building for 25 years.

If plans are approved by the city, construction could begin by mid-summer and Noma Bowl could be open by the end of the year.

Presently, area residents must drive to Rohnert Park (about 24 miles away), Santa Rosa (about 23 miles away) or Napa (about 15 miles away) to bowl. The couple says their center will be family-oriented by day, and transition to more of a bar vibe at night.

While Sonoma’s economy is based on wine tourism, the Kovacses say Noma Bowl is being designed “for the locals to enjoy. We want to offer affordable fun for kids here in town.”

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Bob Johnson

Bob Johnson has received more national writing awards than any other bowling writer — close to 70 over the course of his 40-year career. He began at age 16 as a staff writer and then assistant editor for the weekly Pacific Bowler newspaper in his native California, and within three years was writing feature stories for Bowlers Journal. He has written for the magazine ever since, except for a five-year span when he was hired as the founding editor of another magazine. He moved to Chicago in 2000 and spent 13 years in the Windy City, including five as Bowlers Journal’s Editor. In 1975, Johnson received the Robert E. Kennedy Award as California’s top undergraduate high school journalist. Five years earlier, on the lanes, he had shared the Bantam Division Doubles championship in the Orange County Junior Bowling Association Championships. Today, he continues to work full-time for Bowlers Journal as its Senior Editor, to write his popular “Strikes Me” column, and to edit Luby Publishing Inc.’s weekly business-to-business Cyber Report.

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