Bowling balls are once again striking pins at the five Chipper Lanes bowling alleys in Colorado.

Like most things during the COVID-19 pandemic, the way things operate have changed dramatically but likely for the better.

Bowlers now make online reservations for lanes, which are strategically spread out. Hosts and hostesses escort customers to their sitting areas, take shoe rental sizes and any food/drink orders.

A range of different weighted bowling balls come stocked at each lane for use and to limit the movement throughout the rest of the alley.

“It now feels very much like restaurant service,” said Chipper’s Lanes co-owner Matthew Hoeven. “This has been a model we have been moving towards anyways. We see a lot of positive changes coming out of this.”

Hoeven said Chipper’s Lanes staff came up with the intricacies of its new service model during the down time of the statewide Stay-At-Home order. The company obtained PPP loans to help keep staff employed during the time it was forced to be closed.

Increased attention toward cleanliness is part of the new world at Chipper’s Lanes. Used areas, balls and shoes are sanitized shortly after use. 

“We've gotten wonderful feedback from customers who were pleased to come into the environment and see the cleanliness,” Hoeven said. “You see all of our team cleaning throughout each area when you are here.”

Summer bowling leagues have even returned to Chipper’s Lanes. Teams have shrunk from four to 2-3 players.

And a new world of bowling is expected to continue long after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chipper's Lanes Locations

  • 830 N. College Ave. in Fort Collins
  • 217 W. Horsetooth Road in Fort Collins
  • 2454 8th Ave. in Greeley
  • 555 S. St Vrain Ave. in Estes Park
  • 100 Nickel St.in Broomfield
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