Fun, Free and in Perth! – AMF’s After-Dark Bowling

OK, let’s be honest. By “fun, free, and in Perth,” what I really mean is fun, affordable on a limited university student budget, and in the general vicinity of Perth, Western Australia. But that’s just not as catchy.

AMF’s After-Dark Bowling sign

AMF’s After-Dark Bowling

AMF Bowling has several locations throughout the city, and one of them is conveniently close to my house. Like the youth we are, we sat in the car and scoured the internet for cheap activities nearby. We were desperately clawing at the keyboard to answer all our problems, the largest being: “What is there to do besides clubbing?” (I am not one for sweating in high heels to loud music).

Different colored bowling balls

AMF’s After-Dark Bowling

Someone glanced up from the screen, and there it was before us, animatedly beckoning with neon lights against the night sky. We entered sheepishly.

A person bowling and aiming for the lone pin

AMF’s After-Dark Bowling

AMF offers a $10 “after dark” deal on Fridays and Saturdays. That’s two games for a tenner any time after nine.

The term “I wouldn’t want to be in their shoes” was employed by my friends. Donning the same slippery soles as the hundred bowlers before you is not everyone’s cup of tea. I moonwalked in my ‘shoes of unity’ while they settled their qualms. Fortunately, at AMF shoe hire is not compulsory if you wear plain sneakers.

A close up of red and black bowling shoes

There is nothing quite as satisfying as hearing the rumble of the ball down the alley, the pop and clatter of the pins as they bounce and tumble.

No such sound met my ball last night.

There was one glorious moment before I took my first turn. One moment when I had not picked up that giant marble, and no one saw my lack of form. But then they did.

Tv monitor with the points so far in the bowling game

AMF’s After-Dark Bowling

Friends advised me to “be a pendulum” and “maybe… choose a lighter ball?” Oh, the shame.

At least there were arcade games. Air hockey should be offered at the Olympics. Be warned: I’m no gambler, but our battle for championship over that disk had me emptying my pockets of spare change. Maybe give your purse to a trusted friend for the evening.

A close up of people playing air hockey

All in all, it was a wonderful, spontaneous night out on the town. I developed skills in an area where I had none, bonded with friends as they imparted their wisdom, and threw it all away in the Air Hockey Hunger Games for disk control.

People gathering around and bowling

More importantly, AMF’s after-dark bowling proved that to experience Perth’s night life, young adults do not have to dress up or dance dirty. Still, moonwalking in stained shoes could be interpreted as such.