80th Annual Statewide Event to Span 10 Weekends, Generate More than $3.5 Million in Economic Impact
Erie, Pa: The Erie Sports Commission (ESC) and the Pennsylvania State chapter of the United States Bowling Congress (PA USBC), have announced that the 80th Annual PA USBC Open Championship will be hosted in Erie County, Pa. The statewide championship, held annually in locations across Pennsylvania, will begin Saturday, April 6 and span ten weekends from April through June. The ESC has estimated the economic impact of the tournament county-wide to exceed $3.5 million.
Representatives from the associated organizations, along with County Executive Kathy Dahlkemper, announced the return of the event at a press conference Tuesday, Sept. 18.
“This tournament is the largest tourism generator, in terms of economic impact, that we have ever hosted,” said Mark Jeanneret, executive director of the Erie Sports Commission. “Every year, bowlers and their families from across the state travel to compete in this tournament, regardless of where the event is held. When Erie last hosted in 2014, we saw more than 5,000 bowlers attend. We have great support from the PA USBC in Erie, as well as the Northwestern PA USBC. Traveling families have a lot to look forward to when attending the Championship in Erie.”
Nearly 5,000 bowlers are expected to take part in the tournament in 2019. Participants traveled from across Pennsylvania, as well as locations in North Carolina, Texas and Florida to participate in the 2018 tournament, which was held in Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
The 2019 Championship will be held each Saturday and Sunday from April 6 through April 28, with the exception of April 20-21, in observance of Easter. The competition will be held each weekend on Friday through Sunday from May 3 through June 16.
Rolling Meadow Lanes will host the five-person team event. The minor events, consisting of doubles and singles tournaments, will be conducted at Eastway Lanes. Bowlers will be competing for a prize fund in excess of $170,000 in both scratch and handicap divisions.
“The Northwestern PA USBC is proud to host this event for the third time in the past 11 years,” said Brett Rearick, host association tournament director for the Northwestern PA USBC. “The event will again bring in a large number of participants to the Erie region. The many volunteers who dedicate their time for the 10 weekends of competition will work hard to make everyone feel welcome.”
“The Pennsylvania State USBC association is pleased to be conducting our 80th Annual Open Championship Tournament in Erie PA,” said Bryan Hubler, open championship tournament director for the PA State USBC. “This year marks the first year of our tournament being conducted by our newly merged Pennsylvania State Association, and we look forward to continuing the rich history of this 80 year tournament. We look forward to the hospitality that is always shown to our bowlers by the members of the NWPA USBC and by the management and staff at both of the bowling centers that will be hosting this year’s tournament.”
The tournament is open to any member of the PA USBC who is interested in competing. Spectator admission is free. Participants can obtain information and register for the tournament at www.bowlpa.com.