The Hopewell Indians bowling takes place on Sunday evenings at the local bowling alley. The season runs throughout most of the year, with only taking a few weeks break off at the end of their season. The team competes in tournaments a few times throughout their season. The compete as individuals at the tournaments, with ratings being won depending on how they perform at the tournaments. They medals and rankings they can receive are Gold, Silver and Bronze, with some tournaments using placings instead.
The bowlers bowl three games every Sunday, with three bowlers per lane. Bowling is co-ed and there is really no age limit to it, just as in basketball, cheerleading and softball. Individuals that bowl range from under ten years old, to over fifty years old. Individuals include those that can walk to bowl, and those that are in wheelchairs. For those that are in wheelchairs, the bowling alley provides them with a ramp for the ball that they can use to get the ball down the lane. It's really something to watch these individuals bowl and watch their faces just light up!
Most of the individuals that participate in bowling, participate in basketball, cheerleading or softabll as well. Once they try one sport, they try them all and become addicted. All of the athletes are close friends and want to stick together in every sport.
The fun thing about the bowling league, and other Special Olympic sports as well, is that other people besides the players can be involved. For instance, staff members can bowl with the players when they take them to their practices on Sundays. The staff are offered the same bowling alley rate per game as the players are. This challenges the athletes to try harder and to create chances for them to compete against others besides their teammates.
The bowling team is coached by an athlete's mom and she is in charge of the athletes during practices and the tournaments. She records their bowling scores each week, as well as keep them in line during practices. When they go away to weekend tournaments, it is her and her husband that stay with the athletes while they bowl and in a hotel room, wherever the tournament is being held.
Bowling works out throughout the year, because it never interferes with any other sport that is going on at the same time. Sunday evening practices generally work with everyone, enabling them to play in basketball or softball, as well as bowling at the same time. This creates well-rounded athletes!