Under the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union, the EIU Lanes is home to Eastern’s Student Bowling League: a student-only, intramural bowling team managed by Ronnie Hellman.
As the Student Bowling League comes up on its fifth year at Eastern, the league is beginning to prepare for its upcoming season.
“It’s always neat to meet new bowlers that are joining,” Hellman said, who has been the manager at EIU Lanes for the past four years.
The Student Bowling League’s season officially starts Sept. 11.
Hellman said anywhere from 15 to 30 students join the bowling team each year, where they then form smaller teams consisting of two or four.
Each season of bowling at the lanes is divided up by semester, with each semester lasting 10 weeks. Each week costs $7, but there is the option to pay $70 upfront during the first week. Alternatively, students can also pay weekly.
Bowlers can bring their own bowling balls and shoes and rent a locker to keep their belongings safe.
Benjamin Shank, a senior special education major, works at the front desk at EIU Lanes and troubleshoots any technical issues that happen behind the scenes. He is also a member of the Bowling League and is on a team with his girlfriend.
“Bowling has been a part of my life for 15-plus years, and it’s a dream come true for me to get to be so involved with the EIU Bowling Alley,” Shank said. “Being at the bowling alley has definitely affected my life for the better.”
For this upcoming season, Shank is excited to participate in the Student League again, as it will be his third year. Even if they do not bowl well, it is great to just have fun bowling with his team, Shank said.
One weekend, Shank’s family went bowling when they came to visit him.
“I was feeling really good that night, and I actually threw 10 strikes in a row before I choked up on the tenth frame,” Shank said.
He said it was great to share such a great experience with people so close to him.
“One day, I will get (a perfect game),” Shank said.
Those interested can sign up for the Student Bowling League up until when it starts on Sept. 11.
While only current Eastern students can join the Student Bowing League, anyone is able to use the facility.
EIU Lanes is open 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Fridays, 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturdays and 1 p.m. to 11 p.m. Sundays.
Bowling costs $2 with a student ID and $2.50 for non-students.
For further information, those interested can contact the EIU Lanes at 217-581-7457 or visit www.eiu.edu/union/bowling.php.
Travis Moody can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]