Cyber Report #991

E-dition No. 991 • Thursday, March 1, 2018

Editor: Bob Johnson (


California Pizza Kitchen Vet to Lead Main Event


Ardent Leisure Group (ASX: AAD) has appointed Chris Morris as President and Chief Executive Officer of Main Event Entertainment, effective March 26.


Morris brings more than 20 years of experience with multisite businesses, including more than six years in the family entertainment business. His career includes extensive experience in brand revitalization strategies, operational execution and new unit development. He has successfully opened more than 200 units with five different businesses.


Morris previously served as president of California Pizza Kitchen, a leading casual dining brand, operating 260 restaurants in 30 states and 12 countries worldwide. During his time at CPK, the 32-year-old company was revitalized into a thriving and relevant brand, returning it to positive comparable store sales.


Before CPK, Morris held senior executive roles for On the Border Mexican Grill & Cantina and CEC Entertainment (owner of Chuck E. Cheese’s and Peter Piper Pizza). At On the Border, he served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, and joined the company at the time it was acquired by a private equity firm. He led the company through a successful carve-out, implemented brand revitalization strategies, and successfully sold the company to generate strong returns for all stakeholders.


Prior to On the Border, Morris served as Chief Financial Officer for CEC Entertainment while it was a publicly traded company (NYSE: CEC). During his time at CEC, the company successfully opened more than 90 new entertainment centers and generated $800 million-plus in revenue. Earlier in his career, Morris also held positions of increasing responsibility at NPC International and Applebee’s International. He began his career at Deloitte & Touche.


Dr. Gary Weiss, Chairman of Arden, said, “The Board is delighted with the appointment of Chris Morris, after an extensive search process. He brings to the business excellent executive leadership experience with a significant understanding of family restaurant and entertainment operations, and we look forward to his commencement in March. On behalf of the board, I would also like to thank Darin Harper for his contribution as Interim CEO during this period of change. Darin will return to his role as CFO at Main Event upon Chris’s commencement.”


Commenting on his appointment, Morris said, “I am thrilled to take up this opportunity at Main Event, and I look forward to working with the Board and the entire team to continue the growth strategy of the business. Main Event is an extraordinary brand with an industry-leading business model, and I am excited about its long-term prospects in markets across the nation.”



Storm to Sponsor Collegiate Bowler of the Year Awards


Storm Bowling Products has agreed to a two-year pilot sponsorship of the International Bowling Media’s Collegiate Bowlers of the Year Award.


The award was established in 1987 to recognize and honor male and female bowlers for their outstanding accomplishments in collegiate competition, and is presented each year during the Intercollegiate Team Championships.


“Once again, Storm Bowling steps up to support collegiate bowling,” said Keith Hamilton, President of the IBMA. “With sponsorship from Storm, the IBMA College Bowlers of the Year will get a nice upgrade, a tribute to our three-decade tradition of honoring the best collegiate players.”


“We are very excited to be able to sponsor this prestigious award,” said Steve Kloempken, Storm’s Vice President of Marketing. “Since it can be earned only by outpacing thousands of incredibly talented student athletes, the Collegiate Bowler of the Year award is always held in the highest regard. And one can earn it only through a deep commitment to mastering the elements of our sport and competing at the highest level.”


Kloempken won the award in 1995 when he bowled for Wichita State. Other standout winners include Chris Barnes, Lynda (Norry) Barnes (2), Josh Blanchard, A.J. Johnson (2), Liz Johnson, Marshall Kent, Kelly Kulick (2), Stefanie (Nation) Johnson, Bill O’Neill (3), Missy (Bellinder) Parkin, Shannon Pluhowsky and Michael Tang.


The committee, comprised of eight to 10 members of the media, first selects the top eight players (male and female), then votes by weighted ballot to determine the four honorable mention selections, three runners-up and the Bowlers of the Year. Each honoree receives an award. Kloempken and Diandra Asbaty will be added to the committee.


Storm Bowling also supports, with its corporate membership, the $5,000 IBMA Chuck Pezzano Media Scholarship, presented by the Billiard and Bowling Institute of America.



Hammer Adds Roumimper to Pro Staff


Hammer Bowling has announced the addition of Tannya Roumimper to its national PWBA pro staff.


Roumimper has been a member of Team Indonesia since 2005. Her resumé includes a bronze medal (trios) at the 2017 World Bowling Championships, a gold medal (doubles) and a silver medal (Masters) at the 2017 South East Asia Games, a silver medal (doubles) and a bronze medal (Masters) at the 2015 SEA Games, a gold medal (singles) at the 2007 SEA Games, a silver medal (all-events) at the 2007 World Youth Championships, and a silver medal (team) at the 2010 Asian Games.


In addition, Roumimper is a two-time National Collegiate Bowling Coaches Association Most Valuable Player (2013-14) and is the 2009 Indonesia Open champion and the 2010 Thailand International Open champion.


Rob Gotchall, Ebonite International’s Marketing Manager for Players, Promotions and Events, said Roumimper brings impressive international credentials and an outstanding collegiate career at Wichita State to the table.


“We are very excited to begin working with Tannya to take her game and career to the next level,” Gotchall said.


“Her addition to Hammer’s PWBA national staff continues our growth of assembling a team of the best players from around the world,” he said.


Roumimper said Hammer’s commitment to the PWBA is a major reason for her signing, and she looks forward to realizing her dreams with the brand.


“It has always been a dream to win a PWBA title,” Roumimper said. “I hope with the support I have with Hammer, I will be able to get the job done.


“It will be an honor to represent my first title with Hammer,” she added.


Roumimper is from Bandung, located 87 miles southeast of Jakarta. It is Indonesia’s third-most populous city, home to 2.5 million people.



Your Idea Could Win a ‘People’s Choice’ Award


If you’re a proprietor who attended International Bowl Expos “back in the day,” you probably sat in on an “Idea Exchange” moderated by former bowling center operator Don Drooker. At those sessions, proprietors shared their best promotional and marketing ideas, enabling attendees to take home dozens of new money-making strategies.


This year at Bowl Expo, the Bowling University Idea Wall — an “idea exchange” for the tech age — is back, as are the “People’s Choice Awards.” Proprietors can win even if they can’t make it to Bowl Expo. Here’s how it works…


* Go to and submit your best tournament, league or casual play program. Proprietors may submit more than one entry and enter all three categories if they’d like.


* Each idea submitted will be printed as an oversized poster and displayed at Bowl Expo as part of the Bowling University Idea Wall exhibit at the trade show.


* Expo attendees will vote on their favorite idea in each of the three categories: tournament, league and casual play.


* The top vote-getters will earn the “People’s Choice Award” and be recognized as having the best tournament, league, or casual play idea in America.


* Everyone who submits an idea will be given access to all of the ideas, even if they are not able to attend Bowl Expo.


All submissions must be received by April 1.



The Power of Bowl Expo: Speakers Inspire Baby Names


Over the years, there has been a huge surge in babies named after popular athletes. Given the uniqueness of their names, it really makes you remember that the origin of the word “fan” is “fanatic.”


With the Winter Olympics having just drawn to a close, it’s interesting to note that Mia (Hamm) ranks number one on the list. When her career began in 1987, there were 544 babies named Mia. In 2016, there were 14,336.


The list of the top 14 athletes who inspired baby names includes two athletes who recently keynoted International Bowl Expo. Which brings up the question: Did they inspire baby names because of their stardom as athletes… or because they appeared at Bowl Expo? Hmm…


Something to think about as you peruse the list, compiled by…


  1. Conor McGregor


  1. Lionel Messi


  1. Deion Sanders


  1. SHAQUILLE O’NEAL — 5,391 total boys named Shaquille. More commonly known as Shaq, O’Neil was one of the heaviest players ever to play in the National Basketball Association. In 1992, he was the first pick in the NBA draft, and was selected as Rookie of the Year for the 1992-93 season. Besides the dozens of basketball awards, Shaq also established himself as a media personality. He spoke at Bowl Expo 2017.


  1. Serena Williams


  1. Nadia Comaneci


  1. Grant Hill


  1. Danica Patrick


  1. Kobe Bryant


  1. Iker Casillas


  1. Laila Ali


  1. Jalen Rose


  1. PEYTON MANNING — 46,680 total boys named Peyton. Manning played quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos, and is considered one of the best QBs of all time. He was the first pick in the NFL draft of 1998, the MVP of the Super Bowl in 2007, and made three other Super Bowl appearances in 2010, 2014 and 2016. He spoke at Bowl Expo 2016.


  1. Mia Hamm


With legendary coach Lou Holtz keynoting Bowl Expo 2018 this June, could we be in for a new generation of Lous? We should begin to know the answer to that question in March 2019.


Meanwhile, if you have not yet registered for this year’s Bowl Expo, to be held June 17-21 at the Paris Hotel and Casino and the Las Vegas Convention Center, here’s the place to do it:


And look for an exclusive interview with Holtz in the March issue of Bowling Center Management.



New, Returning Sponsors Announced for PBA and PWBA


The Professional Bowlers Association and Professional Women’s Bowling Association have unveiled new and returning sponsors for 2018.


The PBA has announced that two new corporate sponsors have joined the lineup for its upcoming return trip to Bayside Bowl in Portland.


OceanView at Falmouth will be the titled sponsor of the 2018 PBA League Elias Cup competition, and Port Property Management will be the titled sponsor for the PBA Xtra Frame Maine Shootout leading into the PBA League competition.


The PBA Xtra Frame Port Property Management Maine Shootout, a single-elimination match-play event offering a PBA Tour title if the winner is a PBA member, will be held April 17-18 and will be covered from start to finish live on PBA’s Xtra Frame live streaming channel.


The OceanView at Falmouth PBA League competition will begin with a “seeding” round for all eight teams on Friday, April 20, followed by quarterfinal, semifinal and Elias Cup championship rounds on Saturday and Sunday. All of the weekend rounds will be live streamed on ESPN3 and taped for delayed telecast on ESPN on four consecutive Sundays at 1 p.m. Eastern beginning on April 22.


Meanwhile, Skechers, one of America’s leading footwear manufacturers, has joined the lineup of advertisers participating in the 2018 Go Bowling! PBA Tour telecast series on ESPN.


“Skechers is excited to be a part of the current schedule of PBA Tour telecasts on ESPN. The audience of the PBA Tour fits our demographic profile nicely for our ‘wide fit’ line promoted by Howie Long and our line of Skechers slip-resistant ‘work’ footwear,” said Skechers Senior Vice President of Advertising, Gary Patrick.


PBA’s series of live telecasts in February will be followed by coverage of the Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship, the USBC Masters and the PBA League Elias Cup series in late March and April, reaching millions of American sports fans.


Nationwide and Pepsi return as national sponsors of the PWBA for the 2018 season, and each will be a title sponsor of a PWBA Tour event.


Pepsi, the official soft drink of the PWBA, will be the title sponsor of the tournament event in Seminole, Fla. It previously was the title sponsor of the PWBA Lincoln Open. The Pepsi PWBA St. Petersburg-Clearwater Open will take place Aug. 2-4 at Seminole Lanes.


Nationwide also will have its name on a PWBA Tour stop for the third time, as the Columbus, Ohio-based company will be the title sponsor of the 2018 PWBA event in its hometown. Nationwide was title sponsor of the 2016 PWBA Sonoma County Open in Rohnert Park, Calif., and the 2017 PWBA Rochester (New York) Open. This year, the Nationwide PWBA Columbus Open is set for Aug. 16-18 at Wayne Webb’s Columbus Bowl.


Vis-Sportswear, an Italian sportswear company, has joined the PWBA Tour as an apparel sponsor for the next two years.



Andy Varipapa Exhibit to Open at Museum


On March 27, a new exhibit based on the life and career of Andy Varipapa will open at the International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame in Arlington, Texas.


The charismatic Varipapa gained fame in the early part of the 20th century as a trick-shot artist, and brought bowling to the big screen in the first bowling film short, “Strikes and Spares,” in 1934.


Varipapa was a leading instructor and exhibition bowler, one of the first to make nationwide tours. His bowling ability often was overshadowed by his trick shooting, but his achievements on the lanes have been almost legendary.


At age 55, he won the 1946 All-Star tournament, and the following year became the first to repeat as All-Star champion. He also won the BPAA Doubles in 1947 and 1948 with fellow Hall of Famer Lou Campi. He was inducted into the ABC Hall of Fame in 1957 in the Superior Performance category.


Varipapa never slowed down, continuing his famed exhibitions and remaining in the spotlight until his death. The exhibit will feature a short film, items from the museum’s collection and recently donated items from Andy Varipapa II and John LaSpina. It will run through June 24.



PBA Takes a 60th Anniversary Stroll Down Memory Lane


On Saturday, April 4, 1970, Don Johnson had already locked up the Firestone Tournament of Champions title with his 11th consecutive strike at Riviera Lanes in Fairlawn, Ohio.


As his opponent, Dick Ritger, and millions of ABC-TV fans watched, Johnson threw what appeared to be another perfect shot in pursuit of a $10,000 perfect game bonus.


But the 10-pin stood, and Johnson fell to the approach in disbelief and disappointment.


That iconic image, captured on black-and-white film by an Akron Beacon-Journal photographer, is arguably the most reproduced photo in bowling history, and it spawned an artistic interpretation by Marc Moon that graced the cover of the 1971 PBA Tour Program.


To view the photo, see the October 2017 issue of Bowlers Journal International. To see the painting, click here:


Johnson’s historic 299 also has been selected as the “most memorable moment” in the PBA’s 60-year history, as revealed during the telecast of the Go Bowling! PBA 60th Anniversary Classic from Woodland Bowl in Indianapolis.


That moment, along with the other “top 10” moments, kicked off the unveiling of all 60 “most memorable moments” that are being revealed one per day, Monday through Friday, on the PBA’s social media outlets.


For the 100th anniversary edition of Bowlers Journal International, published in November 2013, we asked Mark London to compile a list of the top 25 TV bowling moments. London listed Johnson’s 299 in the No. 3 position. No. 2 on his list was Pete Weber’s clutch strike to win the 2012 U.S. Open, which prompted PDW’s “Who do you think you are? I am!” reaction. Claiming London’s No. 1 spot was Kelly Kulick’s victory in the 2010 PBA Tournament of Champions.



Previews: March BCM and Spring BEC


The March issue of BCM and the Spring issue of Bowling Entertainment Center (BEC) pack a powerful 1-2 punch, providing bowling center owners with dozens of business-building strategies, as well as ideas for future growth.


The magazines have been packaged together and should be reaching bowling center owners, managers and key staff members soon. Here’s a look at just some of what you can expect:


* Why Michael Ducat decided to expand his center in Cypress, Fla., to accommodate a new arcade, rather than remove lanes.


* How to make sure you’re stocking the right prizes in your redemption arcade.


* Qubica at 25: The year that Apple introduced the Newton, three Italian twenty-somethings began to change the face of bowling.


* As noted above, an exclusive interview with Coach Lou Holtz, who talks football, motivation, golf, bowling and turtles. Yes, turtles.


* Seven best practices for spending your marketing dollars wisely.


* Bowl Expo preview: Mike Holtzman on changing the food-and-beverage mindset of bowling center guests.


* Cluck-cluck: an item that should be on every bowling center’s food menu.


* Four ways to make your Bowl Expo trip easier.


* Using technology to take the guesswork out of reserving a lane.


* How Christina Vitagliano has created a miniature golf empire by pumping energy and creativity into an old activity.


* Outdoor? Indoor? Regular? Blacklight? There is a lot to consider when contemplating a mini-golf attraction.


* Code 3: A retired firefighter comes to the rescue of a small-town bowling center.


* Pictorial: Bowling is being presented in some amazing spaces.


* With 82 lanes, Bowlmor Corporation creates a hybrid version of its Bowlero model.


* Where family is everything: a Utah center that’s still going strong after 61 years.


* Splitsville opens a new location at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Calif.


* See how GoBowling! will be everywhere when it teams up with “The Glen.”


* Strategies for overcoming today’s major marketing challenges.


* Relational selling: How a focused strategy and a dedicated sales staff can produce a very profitable party business.


* What you need to know about the new TCJA changes.


* A close look at the SBA’s revised 504 Loan Program.


* Five investment mantras for getting the best results.


* Bart Burger recalls pleasant childhood memories as he sums up the Bowling Summit.


* Promotional ideas for Mother’s Day.


* The importance of giving customers the option of mobile pay.


* Beachcombing: Family entertainment center operators meet in Laguna for education, networking and an IAAPA celebration.


* A look back at bowling’s role in the Orangeburg Massacre (50 years ago), groundbreaking for the National Bowling Stadium (25 years ago), and how the International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame ended up in Arlington (10 years ago).


You’ll find all of that… and much more… in the March issue of BCM and the Spring issue of BEC.


P.S.: There’s plenty of business news in the March issue of Bowlers Journal International as well, including a report on the BPAA Bowling Summit and a “first look” at the new Splitsville Luxury Lanes location at the Disneyland Report in Anaheim, Calif.



BPAA to Preview Online Courses With Webinars


If you’re a BPAA member and have been thinking about taking a Bowling University online course, you now have an opportunity to learn more about what’s available.


Beginning on March 9, BPAA will present a series of webinars focusing on the various online courses, including comments from proprietors using the programs.


Here’s the schedule for March:


* March 9 — Training vs. Education: Is There a Difference?


* March 16 — On-Demand Online Training: Get Your Team Started!


* March 23 — Online Education and Management Certification Program: Continue the Learning!


The webinars begin at 11 a.m. Eastern (10 Central, 9 Mountain, 8 Pacific). To register, BPAA members may go to:



Business Briefs…


* Mere weeks after opening their new location at the Disneyland Resort, the owners of Splitsville Luxury Lanes have closed their facility in Cincinnati, Ohio. The 16,000-sq.-ft. location shared space with the Howl at the Moon entertainment concept at The Banks, a downtown mixed-use development that incorporates residential units, office space, dining, leisure and entertainment venues. The Banks is book-ended by Paul Brown Stadium to the west and the Great American Ballpark to the east, along the city’s waterfront. Splitsville opened in August 2016 in a space formerly occupied by Toby Keith’s Bar and Grill.


* Alley Cats Entertainment has opened in Hurst, Texas, with a complete ColorSplash LED lighting system, including Lane, Cap and Pindeck lights. Andy B’s in Tulsa, Okla., updated the “VIB” section of the entertainment center with ColorSplash LED VersaLamp lane lights.


* Tonight’s episode of “Chicago Fire” (10 p.m. Eastern on NBC) includes segments filmed at the Chicago location of WhirlyBall. That facility features eight Brunswick bowling lanes, laser tag and, of course, WhirlyBall, which combines lacrosse, hockey, basketball and bumper cars in a game of skill coupled with chance. While maneuvering bumper cars, two teams of five use hand-held scoops to pass a whiffle ball to each other and, ultimately, at a scoring target. Whirlyball presently has two other Chicagoland locations (Lombard and Vernon Hills) and a location in Colorado Springs, Colo. Bowling also is also among the attractions in Colorado Springs.



Other News You Can Use…


* The story of Brady Carbocci and his family provides another reminder that you always can count on bowlers to rally behind those in need any time crisis strikes. That has been the case for the bowling community in and around Parkland, Fla., where lifelong bowler Brady Carbocci’s 17-year-old daughter Hannah found herself in the middle of the shooting that took the lives of 17 people at Stoneman Douglas High School on Feb. 14. Hannah is a student at Stoneman Douglas and a bowler herself who aspires to complete at the college level. She hid under her teacher’s desk when the shooting broke out, texting her 19-year-old sister Kaitlin to call 911 and her parents. Hannah survived, but others in that very classroom did not. Within a week-and-a-half of that nightmare, Hannah and her family already had helped raise in excess of $15,000 for the Broward Education Foundation, mostly through bowling ball raffles at a variety of local bowling centers. The money will go directly to victims’ families. Brady shared his family’s story on the latest BJI Podcast, discussing Hannah’s ordeal and how the darkest moment of his life ultimately underscored the abundant generosity of the greater bowling family to which he belongs in South Florida. You can listen to the podcast here:


* The guest this week on Phantom Radio is PBA and USBC Hall of Fame member Barry Asher. To listen to the conversation, go to:


* CONTACT: Please send business news, event information, etc. to Bob Johnson at For breaking business news, visit or, and “Like” Bowling Center Management and Bowlers Journal International on Facebook. BJI Cyber Reports are now archived at


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