Link to Owner Dr. Robert B. Pamplin Jr.



Family Fun Center in Wilsonville changes name, adds bowling center, bar and more

PMG PHOTOS: COREY BUCHANAN - The bowling center has 16 lanes with gameplay and video features. For the past nine months, the former Family Fun Center in Wilsonville has undergone what General Manager Darren Harmon said is its biggest remodel in over a decade.

And recently, the revamped facility — which now is simply called Bullwinkle's Enter-

tainment — revealed its face-lift to the Wilsonville community.

"I think this is going to take us to the next level," Harmon said. "There's not anybody really like us in the area where you can do go-karts, miniature golf, bumper boats, laser tag, bowling and have a cocktail, food."

The biggest change is the addition of a bowling alley and a new parking lot at the spot of the now demolished batting cages. The alley has 16 lanes, includes comfortable furniture, television screens and Harmon said it is designed more for the casual bowler who enjoys cosmic bowling rather than bowling leagues and competitions. For that reason, Harmon doesn't consider Wilsonville Lanes as competition.

"All the bowling centers have been doing cosmic bowl, but are only doing it during a (certain) period of time because of leagues. We're not doing leagues for the most part, and everyone loves to have the video playing and the lights so we decided to do this 100% of the time," he said. Bullwinkles now has a more consolidated purchasing counter.

The aspects of the bowling center Harmon is most excited about are the gameplay and video features, where customers can play a bowling version of the basketball game HORSE, Angry Birds and more. It also will be open later, 10 p.m. on weekdays and midnight on weekends.

"We're going to get out of the habit of calling this

a bowling alley. It's a bowling center. This is another attraction to our mix," Harmon said.

Next to the alley is a bar with 45 seats. In all, the goal is to attract the millennial generation and more customers during the winter, which Harmon said is much less lucrative than the summer because most of the center's activities are outdoor-oriented.

"We think our customer base should go up about 30-40 percent over the annual traffic flow because we're going to pick them up in the September through May timeframe," Harmon said.

The company also added a silhouette of Bullwinkle positioned at the front of the building and changed the name because Bullwinkle's is a more recognizable brand.

Finally, the center now includes a picnic field and a consolidated ticket purchasing area.

"For operational efficiency, instead of having four areas where we would sell from, we have one big area now. Dine in, grab and go, pay and prizes are all in the same area," Harmon said. There is now a bar next to the bowling alley.

Overall, the project cost about $8 million and took about six weeks longer than Harmon expected.

Harmon said future projects could include adding a reader board that can be viewed from I-5, the expansion of a ropes course and, less likely, a rollercoaster.

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