2021 Special Ambassador Award Honoree
Bowling is a lifetime sport. Participants can enjoy it their entire life, as it doesn’t have age or gender restrictions or many physical limitations. It has also become the most popular sport within SSD’s Special Olympics program—growing from 2,000 athletes in 2011 to more than 3,300 athletes in 2019. One thing that made this possible was SSD’s partnership with Bowlero Lanes.
Knowing the importance and impact that participation in sports and competition has on individuals, the staff at Bowlero Lanes ensure that SSD Special Olympic athletes receive everything they need to succeed in the sport. For going out of their way to accommodate the needs of the athletes and doing everything they can to make the bowling events successful, Bowlero Lanes was honored with a 2021 Special Ambassador Award.
For more than 11 years, Bowlero Lanes has worked with SSD’s Special Olympics program. Throughout the entire partnership, leadership and staff there have always been committed to SSD’s core values, including always keeping the success of the students ahead of everything else.
Staff at Bowlero Lanes have shown great flexibility by opening and staffing the facility extra early to accommodate school schedules, as well as allowing additional last-minute reschedulings. The lanes are always prepared with the needs of students in mind, including having such adaptive equipment as bowling ramps, lighter weight balls, and bumpers on the lanes. The business has also adapted to student needs by allowing some students to wear their tennis shoes, as this is extremely helpful for students with orthotics.
"Bowlero Lanes is committed and dedicated to SSD and always has the students’ best interests in mind,” said Kerrie Townsend, SSD Special Olympics facilitator and nominator of the award. “They go above and beyond to ensure students are given opportunities that will have a positive impact on their futures.”