Moore off to Seattle- Abu Dhabi next?


Jack Hammill - Guest Columnist



The Wapakoneta bowling icon and one of my personal heroes, Mike Moore, takes off for Seattle later this week to compete in the National Special Olympics. Family and the heart and souls of Wapakoneta and this area will follow him and we will certainly keep you all updated.

Mike may well be the most mentally prepared athlete that any of us have ever met. Like others, he has had tough days on the lanes but nothing appears to bother him from one frame to the next. He goes all out on every shot, not worrying about what had happened in the previous frame or game. It certainly seems that there is a good lesson there for all of us.

He warmed up this past week by competing in the Ohio Special Olympics this past week and gave evidence of his laser focus by earning yet another state of Ohio gold medal. It is evident that he was not looking ahead to Seattle.

When Mike takes to the lanes it is about him and the pins with an understanding that if he beats the pins he helps his team. Can any of us really want much more than that from a our fellow team members.

I have often said that if I had one bowler to take a final shot for me that it would be the likes of Don Boyed or Ron Mericle if not a couple young ladies named Kari Miller of Shelley Ambroza. You can certainly add Mike to that list.

Did read a little bit more about the Olympics this past week and really do believe that Mike has a legitimate chance to bring home even more gold on this trip. He is already golden in our eyes so here is hoping that he and his family have fun on the trip.

What I learned is that the Special Olympics World Games are next year in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. Mike has mentioned that the trip to Seattle will be it for him in the world of Special Olympic Bowling but then again would it be possible for Mike to step away without the chance to see more of the World.

Astro Lanes is hosting a big farewell for their superstar on Wednesday before he leaves on Friday. The gathering of friends and supporters will begin at 6 p.m. I can just see the steady flow of people sharing time with Mike between softball games for their kids and grandkids.

The Icon is clearly worth the time.

While we are talking events this summer at our bowling establishments we should not leave Southgate Lanes in Bluffton out of the equation.

Take this moment to circle July 21 on your calendars. The ultimate bowling event genius, Derek Dukes and his crew led by the immortal Bean, aka Brandon Falk, will be hosting ‘Summerfest.”

There will be a 1k race at noon. Yes you read that right, a 1k, which is a perfect distance for some bowlers that I know. It is time for me to begin working out some so I can compete.

Shortly after the “race” the competition will head up with a dodgeball tournament. Teams will be made up of 4-6 members. This promises to be a great time. With any luck Norada Lanes will appear about this time and the “battle” between the two lanes can be settled on the field of honor.

Bubba C BBQ will be grilling from their food truck all day so good food will not be an issue. I have never sampled his fine cuisine but that will come to an end of the 21st. I mean how bad can barbecue be from a man named Bubba?

If that is not enough, Logan Ross will keep the neighborhood awake and disturbed from 7pm until 11pm with some great music.

Proceeds from the day will go to the Bluffton Family Recreation as well as Emergency team of the Bluffton Fire Department. Dukes and the crew continue all to do what they can to meet community needs.

Registration for the 1k is $20 and dodgeball is $50 per team

If that is not enough the PBA returns to Coldwater less than one month following the event in Bluffton!

Remember that this is a national stop and will be the ultimate opportunity to see the stars that most have been watching on television only – cheaper than cable even.

Speaking of getting a chance to watch good bowling, you can feel free to stop by 20th Century on Thursdays around 6pm. A core of some of the better bowlers in our area are competing that evening in a strong singles league. There have already been three 300 games, two by Brent Jones in the same evening and the third by Louie Boughan and any number of games over 270 by numerous bowlers in the league.

When you include a 300 game and an 800 series by Drew Ambroza in the Ponderosa Tournament, it is tough to assess when you may see a perfect game.

It is a great game … see you around the lanes and … make us proud Mike Moore.

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Jack Hammill

Guest Columnist

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