Bowling Sign

Can bowling ever be considered cool? It can if you’re playing at the new bowling alley that just opened up at National on 10th in Calgary.

Bowling pin display

Strike Out

That’s right, this hip beltline pub has opened up eight lanes for 10 pin bowling in their basement. The space gives off a delicious retro vibe, and it’s the perfect backdrop for getting together with friends or co-workers after work. (I’m foreseeing a few GNO taking place here, too!)

National bowling alley

I had a hoot last night sussing out the joint. They have funky balls in neon colours and long leather couches to lounge around on. If only somebody had told me early on there were different ball weights, I’m sure my score would’ve improved. Then again, maybe not.

Bowling shoes

Check out the cool shoes. Admittedly, they’re not as dashing as the “borrowed” pair I wore in University, but they have their own charm.

Eat and Drink

With 24 different kinds of draught, 18 varieties of bottled beer and inventive cocktails, chilling here while getting a bit of exercise (if you can call bowling that) is as much fun as saddling up to the bar and playing Freebie Five with your best mates. The only downside was that I didn’t sample the crowd favourite: Jesus Quintana, comprised of pisco, ginger, hop flowers and strawberry chilli bitters. I did, however, tuck into the taco bar (and their splendid quacamole and the queso fondito). Top marks for their Mexican, despite my crappy photo.

meat and cheese taco

A tip for the business crowd: Don’t wear a well made suit here. As my House of Lies buddy Gabe put it, “The Italians never designed their suits around bowling.” Truer words…

Deets on National

341 10 Ave., S.W., Calgary

403-474-2739

$40/lane per hour during the afternoon

$50/lane per hour most weeknights

$60/lane Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights after 6 p.m.

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