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Best Bowling Center of Racine county Castle Lanes.

Best Bowling Center of Racine county Castle Lanes

Phil Ontko’s $500,000 risk is still paying off at Castle Lanes, voted Best Bowling Center again this year.

In 2008, Ontko and his wife addressed the sport of bowling’s challenges head-on by converting their 24-lane alley to a rustic, northern Wisconsin lodge theme. They also brought in state-of-the-art audio-visuals and a nonsmoking policy, except for the bar area. Had he been able to see the recession coming, Ontko said, he’d never have gone ahead with their big investment. But they did, and he figures it’s paid off.

 “Without a doubt, we are a destination bowling center,” Ontko said. “If they’re in the area, people will see us.” And looking back, he still said the overhaul was worth it. “If we hadn’t done it, I don’t know where we’d be,” he said. Ontko added, “I think any business that can say it maintained or had slight growth in this economy is accomplishing something.”

— Michael Burke   The Journal Times Best of Racine _ September 25, 2011 

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