With Florida’s Open State Championships being held at my local center — home of BowlersMart Jacksonville — Batt Family Fun Center, I thought it would be a good idea to give a little bit of insight on the lanes, approaches, center as a whole, and what it has to offer family’s bringing their children with them.
First thing is first: the lanes. The lanes are a 25-30 year old HPL surface, so the friction is on the high side. However, the heads have been replaced multiple times to my knowledge, and — quite honestly — the lanes play far better than you’d expect a surface of this age to play. We will be bowling on the low side of the center; the boutique will be out of use during competition. 1-24, despite being old HPL actually plays quite well pair-to-pair. In fact, I don’t find many issues at all with the exception of perhaps a lane or two.
Now, that isn’t to say that there aren’t some minor pair-to-pair differences, but, given the age and variables at work, all of the lanes play rather well.
As for approaches, they’re wood, as you’d expect, given the lanes. Therefore, I don’t see anyone having many approach issues. Even with the Florida heat, I wouldn’t expect or anticipate any tackiness. The approaches were recently resurfaced, and they did a fantastic job with them. Expect the approaches to be exceptional.
The pins were just changed out just a few short weeks ago, so I would expect the carry to be fine by the time the tournament starts. As with any new pins, there is a break in period, but that should be long gone by the time you are bowling your team event(s).
With the center itself, do not judge a book by the cover. Though the outside is typical of most centers from the period, the inside is wonderful, and most of the center was recently re-done.
They have all new carpet throughout the center, new masking units, new seating areas, an attractive dark wood just before the approach, beautifully contrasting the tan of the approach, and a family fun side that is relatively speaking new.
This arcade side is perfect for children visiting with their parents. While parents are bowling, there is a multitude of things for your children to do: laser tag, mini-golf, a full arcade, and mini bowling. So, needless to say, keeping your children busy and entertained should not be an issue.
All and all, the center is in immaculate condition given the age and the wear and tear that time inevitably brings with it. The center has an excellent staff and it starts at the top. The proprietor is avidly involved and always trying to improve her product. No shortcuts have been taken, and I think that you will be pleased with the environment that she and her staff have worked hard to create.
As for us, we at BowlersMart Jacksonville are open seven days a week and will have multiple employees on hand during every squad of the event. We look forward to seeing you all and hope you all have a wonderful time here at Batt Family Fun Center in Jacksonville, Florida!