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Bowlers Journal Timeline TIMELINE


At age 45, PBA champion Dick Bat- tista becomes the fi rst pro athlete to return to action after undergoing a heart transplant oper- ation. Though he never regains his previous level of skill, Battista remains competitive, and pro- vides an example for the medically challenged and the physically handi- capped.

1976 5


Battista’s new heart.

1976 Synthetic

lanes become practical.

The ABC approves the fi rst man-made bowling lane, General Electric’s Perma-lane. As the party guest in “The Graduate” predicted, plastics rep- resent the wave of the future. The maintenance advantages of the syn- thetics eventually will make the wooden lane a thing of nostalgia.


Bowling’ is published.


“New and Original,” the cover proclaims

— and author Tom Kouros delivers on that prom- ise. Par Bowling brings science to the bowling instruction book, and breaks all sales records. A sequel, Par Bowling: The Challenge, will refi ne and expand on the fi rst volume.


THE 1960s 1976


Automatic scoring

catches on.

As early as 1963, auto- matic scoring had been approved for league play. By 1979, the technology has improved enough for ABC to introduce such a system at its annual tournament. Paper and pencil were on the way out. Would the day come when a 200-average bowler would not know how to keep his own score?

1979 7

‘Dreamer’ debuts.

Bowling gets the Hollywood treat- ment with a major fea- ture fi lm built around life on the PBA Tour. “Dreamer,” starring Tim Matheson, with cam- eos by several well- known bowlers, turns out to be an average movie, with its good points and bad. The bowling industry had expected more, and is disappointed.

About The Author: J.R. Schmidt has been BJI’s resident historian since 1990. Normally, he writes the monthly “Time Capsule” feature,but during BJI’s 100th an- niversary year, we’ve asked him to assemble a monthly bowling timeline — one for each decade of the magazine’s exis- tence — to be comple- mented by photographs and illustrations from BJI’s massive “morgue.” Schmidt, an avid bowler, also maintains a blog about bowling history.

CLICK HERE: To check out his personal photo gallery of ABC/USBC Open Tournament team photos

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July 2013

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