Kenwood Press

Serving the communities of Kenwood, Glen Ellen and Oakmont

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News: 11/01/2013

Much fun at the Wii Bowl-A-Thon

Back in August, 2009, when Scott Harris, Terry Leuthner, and Carolyn Mack decided to begin the Wii Bowl-A-Thon, they were already holding regular Wii-bowling days just for fun. “It’s always been for fun,” as Scott Harris from the Oakmont Financial Group put it, “However, we decided to start a fundraiser ‘cause we were having too much fun.”

Fun with a purpose is exactly what the 4th Annual Wii Bowl-A-Thon presented to its participants on Oct. 12 in the Kenwood Elementary School’s multi-purpose room. The event included all generations, from a four-year-old to a pregnant mom-to-be, up to a gentleman in his nineties.

Part of the zaniness of the Wii Bowl-a-thon: Cainan Shelton, standing, told his dad Sean that he would have to drop and give him 10 push-ups if Cainan got a higher score. As you can see, he did and dad paid up. Photo by Rebekah Carniglia .
Terry Leuthner smiled as he watched the Wii players. “We enjoy having a good time together; the kids and the grandparents,” he said. “That’s the beauty in it,” added Harris, “Where else can you find all ages playing together? It is literally the best thing about this bowl-a-thon.”

At the event, DJ Benjamin Farren was in charge of the music, which he described as “eclectic.” Along with the purple shirt and purple headphones, he wore a smile: A happy DJ and lively music set a good mood.

Two aisles with six bowling screens on each side accommodated the 165 folks who attended. Groups of people shared Wii lanes, and when someone bowled a strike, the lanes got pretty noisy, along with a few happy dances! There were incentives for silly dancing, ridiculous bowling methods, and ecstatic jumping. Lane monitors with garlands of raffle tickets around their necks were patrolling the scene, rewarding bowlers with raffle tickets whenever they did something outstanding.

The Oakmont Kiwanis Club and the Valley of the Moon Rotary Club also held their first Wii-bowling competition-within-a-competition this year. Since the Rotary Club won the match, word has it that the Kiwanis Club must stand before the next assembly of the Rotary Club and recite The Four Way Test, which is an edict of the Rotary Club.

Speaking of the spirit of competition, Bruce Price clearly possesses that. His record is 40 games of 300 points. His jacket displayed his record, and he’s probably going to augment it with even more, which was evident in his devoted focus on the game before him. The only available quote he gave for publication was condensed to one word: “Really.” Alright, Mr. Price. But really?

Dick Jones took the cake for quirkiest character as he walked around with his sign: “The Answer Man”. Upon being asked about his sign, he quipped: “The less I know about it, the longer I can talk about it!” Darn, did I really forget to ask him about chocolate?

Wait! That’s a good reminder that we haven’t gotten around to the food yet: Burger King, located on Mission Dr. at Hwy. 12, provided lunch for the Wii bowlers. Seeing so many happy people devouring burgers hot off the grill, it’s obvious that Burger King deserves a round of applause.

Happy eaters and bowlers equaled a successful event. This year, the Wii Bowl-A-Thon raised over $11,000, making a total of $40,000 in the past four years. All of the money has benefitted local schools and children. The 2013 Wii Bowl-A-Thon’s proceeds will be split between the Kenwood Education Foundation and the Oakmont Kiwanis Foundation. And this is possible because of our community’s support and participation. Thank you to everyone who attended!

Last, but not least, Scott Harris made an observation that touched a chord in this writer’s heart. Since he knew so many of the bowlers’ personally, he could look at them, and know that some of them were experiencing difficult times, poor health, or some sort of challenge. Yet, there were smiles. A community was joining together for a day, having fun, and supporting local children. Did a breakaway from the typical occur? Yes. Was the event enjoyable and successful? Yes. And did it create a deeper bond in our beautiful valley? Reader, I will leave you to answer that question.

Looking forward to next year’s Wii Bowl-A-Thon!


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