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Bowl Arena to Reopen Tuesday

WEST HAZLETON -- Owners of a bowling alley in West Hazleton learned Monday afternoon that they will be able to reopen the lanes on Tuesday.

On Friday night, they were forced to shut down the building when its roof threatened to collapse under the weight of the snow.

The Bowl Arena on Route 93 in West Hazleton remained closed on Monday, waiting for a structural engineer to certify the roof as safe.

"I see this part of the ceiling hang down from lanes one through eight, and then the second side of the ceiling popped up," said manager Erik Maselkevich. "So we evacuated. We got everybody out. Within minutes, we had everybody out."

The roof held, but with its safety uncertain, the lanes remained closed.

"We had a tournament scheduled for yesterday, and all our leagues are still in progress, and these are our busiest weekends of the year, and now that's lost," said co-owner Bill Dagostin.

Dagostin doesn't want to lose the family business. Hazleton bowling history lives here in the jerseys and the newspaper articles on the Bowl Arena's grand opening in 1959.

What those articles don't mention is that the original owner put cross beams on the roof every four and not eight feet across as required by law. and that may have saved the Bowl Arena during last week's storm.

"We're going to get it going, there's no doubt about it. It's just a question of when," Dagostin added.

An engineer looked at the roof Monday afternoon and found it safe.

The Bowl Arena will reopen Tuesday at 4 p m. just in time for Tuesday night leagues.

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