A day off from school seemed like the perfect opportunity for a family outing to Uncle Buck's Fish Bowl and Grill. Housed in the Bass Pro Shop, it's both a restaurant and bowling alley, but not your typical of either.
When we arrived, the lanes were full so we were given a pager that would buzz us when a lane became available. That gave us time to browse Bass Pro Shop. (You can wander throughout the store with the pager.) Our kids were fascinated with the giant aquarium and other animal displays. It really made the time pass quickly.
The 12-lane bowling alley is designed to feel as if you're under the ocean. Custom bowling balls feature mermaids, octupus and more. They have lightweight balls available for smaller children; ask at the check-in desk. The ball returns are shaped like sharks and alligators. The "dock" wooden lanes feature underwater scenery of sea turtles, sharks, stingrays and other saltwater animals. The undersea theme is carried over to the dining space with barnacled boats and other sea animals hanging from the ceiling.
Screens above each lane automatically keep track of scores. They also provide fun cartoons related to gutter balls, strikes, splits and spares. The lanes can be programmed to provide bumpers when less-experienced bowlers take a turn, and to remove them when seasoned bowlers are up.
Rates are per hour per lane (the screens provide a countdown so you know how much time you have remaining) and vary on time of day from $14.99 - $24.99 per hour. Lanes can accomodate up to 8 people. Shoe rental is $3.
Jessica O'Riley, Iowa Tourism Office