Gobble, gobble, strike! Wild Island’s Coconut Bowl offers everything that a kid could ask for to keep them busy for a couple of hours… parents too!
Reno, Nevada is home to the National Bowling Stadium and is known for its connection to the sport of bowling through movies like Kingpin. In the late 1990’s, King Skate Country closed the Ice Skating Rink just off Sparks Boulevard of what is now across from the Outlets at Legends. It was an ice skating rink that tried and failed to take over the space on the other side of the already existing miniature golf course owned and operated by Wild Island water park – a locally owned and operated company. Finally, Wild Island took over the facility and turned it into a bowling alley. Since then, they have expanded the bowling alley to include an arcade, 32 bowling lanes, a three story climbing structure, and laser tag. Named Coconut Bowl, the Wild Island bowling alley also has birthday party/private bowling lanes that can be rented, a snack bar, an adult beverage bar and pool table area. What more could you ask for, right?
Coconut Bowl and the Wild Island Park are a family fun adventure park; there is something for nearly all ages. Coconut bowl is also open year round.
For families with small children, you can set your scoreboard to automatically put the bumpers up for the little ones and go down for the adults or older children in your group.
We took our kids, A & N, to bowl for the first time and they absolutely loved it, we had to help them a little bit, but the thrill of the pins going down was enough to keep them engaged for nearly an entire game (for two toddlers, that is quite a feat).
Shortly after our first visit there with our children since moving back to the area, we were invited to a birthday party at Coconut Bowl by one of A’s friends at her preschool. I have to say, it was a well-run party. The staff made sure the drinks were topped off and that the kids enjoyed the pizza. The private area for the party was great to keep the kids in our sights without chasing them all over the place and that made this mommy who always ends up chasing one little one or another when out in public quite happy.
Some things to keep in mind. If you think your children might want to do more than bowling, consider buying a package instead of just one game at a time, which is a much more economical way to go. Also, the majority of the building is a little dark, so if you want to take pictures, make sure you have either a good camera that can take pictures in darker lighting or one with good flash. The pictures here of our kids were taken with our iPhone 4S’s. They turned out okay after we processed them with Adobe Lightroom.
Growing up, I didn’t know how to score the game of bowling. I just relied on the computer screens or my parents to help me out. That all changed when I was in college and took at class at the University of Nevada, Reno in bowling as a single credit elective. Since then, I have been hooked on the game. It is just too much fun. Not to mention the days in my 20’s when I could go “White Trash” bowling with trucker caps and a white tank top. Those days are over, at least when the kids are around, but that doesn’t mean that we still can’t have our fun watching the pins tumble to the ground.
I think watching the kids bowl for the first time was more fun than actually playing the game. N and A both were mesmerized watching the big heavy ball collide with the bowling pins down the lane (that is, if they reached the pins and occasionally they didn’t).
Bowling at Coconut Bowl with the kids was great because I like to bowl the old fashioned way, without bumpers. However, with each kid’s turn, the bumpers would rise mechanically. There is a setting at the beginning of the game that allows you to set bumpers for a given player. Too cool. Now dad can still have his game and the kids can too. It made for the best time.
My daughter, A, loved all of the bright colors of the balls as well. She also favored the music playing in the building. She loved the experience and I know what I am going to do when I am all out of ideas to do with my daddy-daughter time, take her to Coconut Bowl.
Coconut Bowl isn’t the only place in town that you can go bowling with your kids (as Reno is seriously the capitol of the bowling world), but it is the best place to take your kids because of the arcade, mini golf, climbing structure and much more. I really enjoy every visit. In my younger years and more so now that I have kids.
Seriously, Coconut Bowl is the place to be.
Where: East of I-80 and Sparks Blvd. Across the street from the Outlets at Legends Mall
What: Bowling Alley and family fun zone
Need to know: Don’t forget socks if you plan to bowl as you must wear rental shoes.
Extra Extra: Check out their birthday party options
Website/Contact Information: http://www.wildisland.com/bowl-play/