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Sports · July 11, 2013

Fauquier’s only bowling alley abruptly goes dark

Photo/Blair Boswell
Randy L. Cole had leased the property from Fletcher Realty for five years.
It was very sad because I’ve bowled over there consistently for 12 years. That was my bowling family.
— Sarah Rossi
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
Bowling pins cease to crack on hardwood lanes and the cosmic lights have gone dark.

Broadview Lanes in the Warrenton Plaza shopping center closed July 1.

The five-decade-old bowling alley’s closure came quickly and without warning.

Broadview Lanes had planned a summer bowling camp July 15-19 for those ages 5 to 18.

“It was a big shock for everyone,” Chris Flynn, shampoo technician at Warrenton Plaza Hair Design said. “It was open one day and closed the next.”

Keith Fletcher built the original 12-lane bowling alley in the 1960s. The Fletcher family later expanded it to 24 lanes.

For the past five years, Randy L. Cole operated Fauquier’s only bowling alley, leased from Fletcher Realty. He added Duke’s Lounge.

Mr. Cole surrendered his license to sell beer and wine on June 30, according to the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

Sarah Rossi, a hair stylist at nearby salon, enjoyed the convenience of walking to the bowling alley after work.

Ms. Rossi, also the president of the Wednesday night summer trio league, noticed a decrease in league participation this year.

About seven leagues used Broadview Lanes, but only four registered this summer, according to Ms. Rossi.

Her summer league had 12 teams of three people each.

“It was very sad because I’ve bowled over there consistently for 12 years. That was my bowling family,” Ms. Rossi said.

However, she noticed, “quite a bit of people,” including Boys & Girls Club of Fauquier members, coming in this summer to participate in non-league bowling.

Although she does not know the exact reason why the establishment closed, Ms. Rossi believes interior building maintenance became an issue.

“The equipment was old and not being maintained,” she said. “Three or four people I know actually quit bowling because they didn’t want their (personal) equipment damaged.”

About half of her summer league will move to Mountain Run Bowling Center in Culpeper to finish the last half of the 16-week season.

“It was a really unique place and I hope at some point it’s able to re-open for people in this town,” Ms. Rossi said of Broadview Lanes.

Mr. Cole and Fletcher Rental Properties representatives failed to respond to inquiries about the closure.
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