Bowling appeals to people of all ages and is certainly a fun way to spend time with your friends. Lucky for us, Philly is full of fun places to bowl. See below for some of the best bowling alleys for a night out in Philly. To read our list from a few years ago, click here.
Arnold’s Bowling Bistro & Bar
2200 West Drive
Phoenixville, PA 19460
Arnold’s Bowling Bistro & Bar, located near Phoenixville, is all about fun and entertainment. It has 20 glow-in-the-dark bowling lanes, black light carpeting, glow balls and glow shoes. It also has billiards, light shows, a dance stage and live music every Wednesday during happy hour and every Friday and Saturday night. Arnold’s Bowling has some great weekly specials, including the Early Bird Special (starting at 50 cents a game) and College Night (college students can bowl from 9 p.m. until close every Wednesday for only $1 a game). The bistro and bar serves classic American food, beer and specialty drinks.
Lucky Strike Lanes & Lounge
1336 Chestnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107
This Center City bowling alley has 24 lanes, eight pool tables, a spacious lounge and a bar. More upscale than your typical bowling alley, the party really starts after 8 p.m. at Lucky Strike Lanes & Lounge for the 21-and-up crowd (no underage bowlers allowed in). For those looking to really live it up, bottle service is available and there’s a valet if you plan to drive. If you get tired and hungry while bowling, take a break and relax in one of its comfy sofas and dine on one of its many food options. Lucky Strikes serves bar food, including pizzas, wings, burgers and tacos. After 8 p.m., be sure to dress in neat, casual and fitted attire, as a dress code is strictly enforced here.
909 N. 2nd St.
Philadelphia, PA 19123
Stepping into North Bowl in Northern Liberties is like going back in time to the 1950s. Occupying the space of an old mechanics garage, North Bowl opened in 2006 and includes 21,000 square feet of bowling, arcade games, dining and more. North Bowl has two floors – you’ll find most of the bowling lanes and restaurant on the first floor and four more private lanes, billiards and arcade on the second. Each floor has a bar and the waitresses come to your lane to take your order and bring you your food and drinks. The menu is the best you can find at a bowling alley - the tater tots are a must try! Come in after 9 p.m. on Wednesdays and Sundays and enjoy $2 games, $2 shoes, $2 tater tots and $2 Tecate.
1200 S. Broad St.
Philadelphia, PA 19146
This small bowling alley in South Philly is great for both parties and dates. It only has six lanes, so it’s best to call ahead to reserve a spot, as it can get busy. Bowling is just $4 per person for a game ($3 on Tuesdays) and shoe rentals cost only $3. Although there is a small food stand here serving snacks along with hot and cold beverages, PEP Bowl is a BYOB and also allows you to bring in your own food. PEP stands for Programs Employing People, so you can bowl happy knowing you’re supporting an organization whose mission is to provide employment and services to people with developmental disabilities.
3081 Holme Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19136
Thunderbird is great for parties, groups or a night out with your friends. Come in to this northeast Philly bowling alley on a Friday (12 a.m. until 2 a.m.) for laser bowling or on Saturday nights from 11 p.m. until 1 a.m. for glow bowling and music. Every Sunday from 9 p.m. until midnight, shoe rentals and a game of bowling cost only $2 each. Weekday nights also have great deals – unlimited bowling is only $12.95 from 9:30 p.m. until close and the price includes shoes. Thunderbird suggests that you call ahead to reserve a lane.
Kelly Neilson is a freelance writer living and working in Philadelphia. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.