The Northern Bowlers Association, one of the premier organizations for scratch bowlers in the Capital Region, will no longer field a full schedule and instead will run just one tournament this season.
The NBA, which produced once-a-month tournaments that featured mostly five-game sweeper formats on Sunday mornings, will hold just one event this year, the Stockade Open, set for Boulevard Bowl
In the recent past, the NBA ran as many as six or seven tournaments, including its season-ending Bob Guild Memorial Championship, but the lack of bowlers and competition from the other major scratch bowling organization, the Huck Finn Northeast Bowling Proprietors of New York, has apparently put an end to one of the longest running events for the area’s premier bowlers.
The NBA, originally started by Boulevard Bowl pro shop operator Frank DePalma and the late Cuby Fiorillo, and later run by Joe Marro, was reincarnated about 10 years ago by Bill Buell, tournament
director Karl Bieber and Ray Evans. Among its sponsors was The Daily Gazette.
“The NBA is still an organization, but I’m not sure what the future holds,” said Buell. “I didn’t want to see the Stockade Open fold, and it’s a good thing that we’re going to keep it going. We’re looking forward to holding one big event, and hopefully, we can make it even bigger than it was before.”
Ironically, the NBA had a schedule in place, but decided to scratch it when conflicts arose with the Huck Finn.
“My problem was that I had a schedule intact this year that already included Town ’N Country in October, Uncle Sam Lanes in November, Boulevard Bowl in November, Burnt Hills Lanes in either December or January because Redwood Lanes folded, Sunset Recreation in December and Sportsman’s Bowl in February,” said Bieber.
“And when we heard that Del Lanes couldn’t hold our Bob Guild this April because of the State Women’s Tournament, I called Marty [Capullo] at Towne, and got them to agree to host it.”
But Bieber said late schedule conflicts made it difficult to continue.
“I’m going to miss the NBA,” he said. “It’s ending because of a bunch of reasons. I’m saddened that it won’t be around any more.”
Bieber thinks the void will be filled by in-house events or other regional tournaments.