Midway Lanes expansion on hold

Published: May. 26, 2020 at 5:54 PM CDT
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We told you last week about the ways Midway Lanes is following health safety guidelines after reopening.

Now, the owner explains how he's facing the residual impacts of COVID-19 while taking on a large project at his bowling alley.

Owner Jim Mellon says he's lost millions of dollars due to the virus but says it's not stopping him from trying to make his alley the best it can be.

Every bowling ball Kyle Gader picks up, is thrown with precision. Toppling pin after pin for five years at Midway Lanes.

"Birthday parties when I was younger. My friend got me involved in the league," said Midway Lanes Bowler Kyle Gader.

Gader's experience is something owner Jim Mellon hopes to share with other children. He plans to make this happen through an expansion.

"We got to get a few amenities in here that'll compliment what we already have. So, it's a full family entertainment center," said Mellon.

Mellon plans to entice younger bowlers by expanding the game room, food operation and rental area-- with the goal being a more relaxed atmosphere. However, it hasn't been smooth rolling for the alley.

"All of a sudden, the pandemic got into place, and it put us to a screeching halt," Mellon said.

Not only did the virus stop construction, business was at a standstill.

Mellon says the financial impacts were huge. Yet, he continues on.

"I can still smile. Not because of anything else-- just knowing that we're going to get through this. We're all in it together like everyone on TV said. We're going to make it happen," Mellon said.

Because the prospect of catering to bowlers like Gader outweighs the financial impacts.

It's exciting to get more kids involved. Things can happen here and more kids can be exposed to it," Gader said.

As of now, Mellon's construction plans have been postponed for two months. He says he will reevaluate his options with a banker on when would be the best time to continue.

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