TA, Brunswick Strike Up Bowling Alley Partnership

By 
Greg Lindenberg, Editor, CSP

brunswick exterior

WESTLAKE, Ohio -- In a first for two industries, TravelCenters of America (TA) and Brunswick are bringing bowling to a new setting. The new Petro Stopping Center in Columbia, S.C., will feature Beltline Lanes and Gaming, a 16-lane bowling alley with a variety of amenities.

Along with TA's usual truckstop services and offerings, the facility includes a 6,700-square-foot arcade gaming area and two golf and gun-range simulators. The facility will also host outdoor events, including live music, car shows, bike rallies and more.

Here are more details of the bowling alley and the entire travel center …

1. Bowling's benefits

bowling lanes

“Our executive group met to discuss what entertainment offerings would resonate with our core guests while attracting new customers and how we wanted to differentiate our travel centers in the future. We wanted to provide drivers with options for entertainment with us during their downtime,” said John Ponczoch, senior vice president of food operations for TravelCenters of America. “We looked at a number of options and decided bowling would be a great fit.”

Ponczoch said, “We’re always trying to do something a little out of the ordinary at our centers. Beltline Lanes and Gaming will provide open play and league bowling, cosmic bowling, parties and a pro bowling manager who is available to help anyone improve their game.”

2. C-store offer

petro columbia entrance

Petro Columbia, open 24/7/365, offers a Mini Mart convenience store with Cool Cup fountain beverages, World Blends Coffee and grab-and-go food options. It also offers large, clean and brightly lit restrooms.

3. Restaurant-ready

quaker

The travel center features a Quaker Steak & Lube restaurant that seats 276 customers, including 38 patio seats, and a Starbucks Coffee cafe that seats 76 customers and includes outdoor patio seating.

4. Fitness, showers and more

games

Other amenities and services include:

  • A laundry facility with machines that accept credit-card and debit-card payments and send the user a text message when the cycle is finished.
  • Ten driver showers operated by a fully automated reservation system, also accessible through the TA/Petro TruckSmart mobile app.
  • A StayFit fitness room, free to professional drivers who are UltraONE Driver Rewards Program members.
  • A movie and TV room for professional drivers.

5. Trucker trappings

bp gas station

Services also include:

  • A six-bay truck service center for customer access to preventive maintenance, tire and repair services.
  • A truck parking lot with 134 truck parking spaces.
  • Reserve-It Parking that allows professional drivers to reserve a parking space.
  • Eight diesel lanes.
  • CAT truck scale.

6. A bowling ally

bowling alley

Beltline Lanes is TA's "first attempt at building a bowling center," Ponczoch said. That's why the travel-center chain turned to Brunswick, whose "expertise and guidance through this process has been invaluable.”

“Brunswick has been with us since day one, walking us through everything from planning and design to construction and more," Ponczoch said.

Muskegon, Mich.-based Brunswick Bowling provides products, services and industry expertise for the development and renovation of new and existing bowling centers and mixed-use facilities across the entertainment industry. Brunswick is the only full-line supplier of bowling center equipment, supplies and consumer bowling products.

TravelCenters of America LLC, with headquarters in Westlake, Ohio, conducts business in 43 states and Canada, principally under the TA and Petro Stopping Centers travel-center brands and the Minit Mart convenience-store brand. TA is No. 19 on CSP's list of the Top 202 convenience store chains in the United States.