In December 2005, Adventure Bowling Center and Sahara Pizza (they share the same building space) owner Harold Nesland began the first of many upgrades to his Snoqualmie businesses along Falls Avenue.
He recently met his half-way point for the “face lift” and has a target goal for completion set for early June.
“We just want to make it nicer, more fun and we wanted to make it more memorable,” Nesland said.
The pizza place received a new ceiling and flat-screen computers to use for taking orders. In addition, its ovens were rebuilt and new booths and table tops were added, along with a party room for overflow.
In the bowling alley, Nesland installed booths and replaced the wood tabletops from the 1970s.
Sahara Pizza has 14 locations; there is only one bowling center.
The bowling alley also added new, circular ball racks with speckled patterns painted on top that are only visible in blacklight, while 20 new sets of blacklights were installed to make the entire alley glow during “moonlight” bowling. Previously, there were four sets that lit only 10 feet of the 60-foot-long lanes.
“It’s cool,” said 10-year-old Sammamish bowler Sara Poppelaars, who bowled last week with her mother Carrie and her 2-year-old brother Joey as part of a Sammamish group of moms and children who were taking advantage of spring break. “I like the bowling and I like the lights.”
Nesland, who lives in Snoqualmie, also added a new disco ball, more shoes and cartoon-character themed bowling balls for children, including SpongeBob SquarePants, Scooby-Doo and Winnie the Pooh.
Synthetic lanes replaced the wooden ones, which has helped raise players’ scores by at least 15 points, Nesland said.
Nesland said his business has the newest lanes on the Eastside.
“I like it,” said Iris Wolfe, part of the Sammamish group that bowled last week.
She has visited the Snoqualmie bowling alley in the past because of its family-friendly atmosphere. She said she appreciates the upgraded appearance and improvements.
As the only bowling alley in the Valley, Adventure Bowling Center receives patrons from all over King County, Nesland noted.
The bowling alley serves more than 1,000 people a week.
The center has also replaced the old decorative backdrops to hide the pin setters with new ones, while the entire building got a new roof.
A neon sign advertising his businesses’ names is also about to go up, Nesland noted.
Nesland co-owns the bowling alley with Julie Randazzo.
The eight-lane center has been at its location since 1954, changing owners multiple times.
Nesland owned a part of the bowling alley and business with his family in the early 2000s, but sold it in 2003.
In October of last year, he bought the business back.
“I always wanted it changed,” Nesland said about the interior design decor. “It took a lot of work to get it to where we are.”
Up next for the bowling alley will be glow-in-the-dark carpet, new tile and a service bar in the back.
The goal is to have all of that in by June 1, Nesland said.
For now, scoring is still done by hand, though Nesland said it is a top priority to transfer to electronic scoring by the end of the year.
On his wish list are leather couches to replace the current blue plastic chairs that populate the scoring area.
“New stuff is arriving daily,” Nesland said. “I really want to make it a gathering place where everyone can go and relax.”
Adventure Bowling Center and Sahara Pizza are located in the same building at 7940 Railroad Ave. S.E. in Snoqualmie.
To reach the bowling alley call (425) 888-1377.
To reach Sahara Pizza call (425) 888-6060.