RENO, Nev., July 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- During the week of June 25, bowling industry leaders from around the world rolled into Reno, Nevada for the 2012 International Bowl Expo and Trade Show. With a theme of "United We Bowl," this year's Bowl Expo showcased how increased solidarity across the industry has contributed to years of consecutive growth and heightened consumer participation. Additionally, the 2012 Bowl Expo was highlighted by the appointment of Catherine DeSocio as the first female president of the Bowling Proprietors' Association of America (BPAA), the leading trade association for the industry.
Striking new ground for bowling, the event was held in conjunction with the 2012 Bowling's U.S. Women's Open with the finalist competition held outdoors under the iconic Reno Arch on Virginia Street. Playing against the wind, dust and the setting desert sun, Kelly Kulick won her third career U.S. Women's Open title while overcoming some of the most challenging lane conditions in the history of professional bowling. Additionally, United States Bowling Congress Hall of Famer Robin Romeo added another green jacket to her collection as she won the first Bowling's Senior U.S. Women's Open.
"Reno holds a special place in the hearts of bowling enthusiasts and is considered by many to be the bowling capital of the world. It's the perfect place to celebrate these incredible individuals who have broken new ground for our industry," said Steve Johnson, executive director of the BPAA. "In particular, this year's event was marked by the tremendous achievements of Cathy DeSocio, Kelly Kulick and Robin Romeo – exceptional women who have advanced bowling, helping to fuel its surging popularity among female audiences and setting a tremendous example for all of us."
Added Johnson, "I was also tremendously honored to celebrate the induction of Jeff Boje into our Hall of Fame. Jeff is a true leader within our industry and has personally played a vital role in driving forward bowling's resurgence as the nation's number one participatory sport."
Jeff Boje followed in the footsteps of his father Bill Boje and was inducted into the BPAA Hall of Fame, becoming the first father-son members of the Hall. Jeff Boje is a former BPAA president and a catalyst behind the creation of the ground-breaking International Bowling Campus in Arlington, Texas. He is the owner of Brandon Crossroads Bowl, Inc. in Tampa, Florida. In accepting the honor, Boje was joined on-stage by Reno Mayor Bob Cashell.
The 2012 International Bowl Expo also paid tribute to our nation's heroes and featured a powerful keynote address delivered by Captain Mark Kelly (USN, Ret.), an American hero and commander of the Space Shuttle Endeavour's final mission. Kelly shared his personal experiences becoming an astronaut, flying combat missions in Iraq, the Space Shuttle Columbia tragedy, and the assassination attempt and recovery of his wife Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.
Additionally, the Expo featured educational 'game changer' seminars and 'learning lab' workshops geared to help proprietors leverage the latest tools, technology, research and innovations to grow and strengthen their businesses.
About the BPAA
The Bowling Proprietors' Association of America (BPAA), founded in 1932, serves as the voice of the bowling industry. Headquartered in Arlington, Texas at the International Bowling Campus, the BPAA provides it's more than 4,000 member centers with group purchasing programs, business and educational seminars, legislative representation and proactively promotes the association and bowling industry. The BPAA's mission is to enhance the profitability of its member centers and raise the profile of bowling, America's top-ranked participatory sport. For additional information please visit www.bpaa.com or call 1-800-343-1329.
SOURCE Bowling Proprietors' Association of America