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Garage Bowling, Cincinnati, Ohio 1957

Western Hills Press 1958

Ten Pin Alley

A home-made bowling alley at the home of 18 year-old Henry Maifeld, St. Catherine Street is drawing 15 junior keglers from Westwood and Cheviot.
This Rip Van Winkle "wrinkle" began last summer for these lads when Henry, his two brothers, Ron, and Larry, and a next-door neighbor, Mark Heavey, were hired by Mark's father, Howard, to tear down an old log cabin in the Heavey's back yard. The boys not only pocketed some money on the deal but decided to use the dismantled lumber to build a bowling runway in the Maifeld family's two car garage. All four had been rolling many lines at commercial centers each week and were anxious to save money.
Henry, assisted sometimes by Larry, used the cabin planks to build a 35 foot-long runway in one of the garage bays last summer. (The standard length is 60 feet.) He salvaged 10 cast-off tires to make a barrier to catch the bowling pins in the "pit" at the end of the lane.
For a ball return, he built an elevated box beside the pit from which the balls roll down a trough into a shallow channel which slopes toward a wooden stop at the head of the lane. He obtained seven full sets of used pins without charge - four from Newport Lanes in Kentucky at which his father, Edwin "Ep" Maifeld bowled a perfect "300" game in 1956 and three from Central Turner Bowling Alleys on Walnut Street.
Since the garage wasn't deep enough to house the whole 35-foot strip, he made the part which extends outside into detachable sections which could be stored inside after each session. And he purposely made wheel space between the lane and the ball return channel to allow Dad to park his car over the lane each night.
The boys set up a non-charge "Maifeld Bowl" in which each player could roll one game if he set up pins for someone else in another game. The nightly turn out of friends became so great last fall that Henry built a second lane in the other half of the garage this January. He figures he put in 100 hours of labor on the whole two-lane project.
The Maifeld boys are now so enthused that they regularly mimeograph their own score sheets and hand out their own trademarked match folders.

Regular patrons are aged from 13 to 18 and include Cliff clausing, Richard and Ron Evans, Ed Flottman, Jerry Goebel, Butch Korte, Jim Lambert, Jim Leistner, Pat Meehan, Bob Sommer and Tom Thompson.
Henry, who averages 20 games per day, holds the "house" record with a perfect 300 rolled on March 2 and two 298 scores. He also leads in three-game series tallies with a 781 and 780 on the same day last October. Much better than his "real-life highs" 288 and 703. He may have lacked space to build a real Brunswick breezeway but he proved that "half an alley is better than none!"

Maifeld Bowl Newspaper Photo, Cincinnati, Ohio 1957

This photo accompanied the newspaper article
that appeared in the Western Hills Press in 1958

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