National Bowling Stadium

Coordinates: 39°31′46.33″N 119°48′43.4″W / 39.5295361°N 119.812056°W / 39.5295361; -119.812056

The National Bowling Stadium is a 363,000-square-foot (33,700 m2) ten-pin bowling stadium in Reno, Nevada. The stadium is recognizable for an 80 feet (24 m) aluminum geodesic dome in its facade, built to resemble a large bowling ball.

National Bowling Stadium
Taj Mahal of Tenpins[1]
Pin Palace[2]
National Bowling Stadium, Reno.JPG
Seen from the south in 2021.
Address300 North Center Street
LocationReno, Nevada, U.S.
OwnerReno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority
Capacity1,100 spectators
Field size78 lanes
38,000 square feet in Reno, Nevada
Broke ground1992; 29 years ago (1992)
OpenedFebruary 3, 1995; 26 years ago (1995-02-03)
Renovated2007, 2019
Construction cost$47.5 million
ArchitectPeter B. Wilday
The front entrance of the building.

Nicknamed the "Taj Mahal of tenpins", the 78-lane stadium opened on February 3, 1995, cost $47.5 million, and took three years to build. It is often the filming location for bowling scenes in films.

Construction and financingEdit

The stadium was constructed as part of a renovation effort of downtown Reno, which also saw the construction of the Silver Legacy Resort Casino,[3] The concept for construction of the stadium was in part to capture tourism dollars being sent to Las Vegas, and as part of an agreement with the United States Bowling Congress that upon construction of a first-class permanent facility, they would ensure their return to Reno every third year. The project was funded by a room tax lobbied by the city of Reno to the Nevada Legislature based on commitments from the United States Bowling Congress and the Women's International Bowling Congress,[1] which itself merged with the USBC in 2005.

The original construction of the stadium had 80 lanes, but since an architectural error resulted in the stadium not having a center aisle for bowlers to march out for the team event, the center lanes had to be converted to an aisle. Despite the conversion to a 78-lane facility, the main pro shop/gift shop is still called "Lane 81".[2]


The stadium can be covered to be converted to convention space. It utilizes fully automatic scoring on what (upon construction) was the world's longest rigid, backlight video screen, with oversight from a computerized command center on the stadium's fifth level. When it opened in 1995, it was just in time to welcome 100,000 members of the American Bowling Congress for their 100th anniversary meeting.[3] In 2009 the National Bowling Stadium broke the record for most United States Bowling Congress championships hosted, surpassing the tie between Buffalo and Toledo.[2]

The stadium also hosts an extension of the International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame (IBM/HF), which is located in Arlington, Texas. The museum displays hall-of-fame portraits as well as artifacts collected and preserved by the IBM/HF.

Film historyEdit

The National Bowling Stadium has been the filming location for several feature films. In addition to being the location of the grand finale between Bill Murray and Woody Harrelson's characters in the 1996 bowling film Kingpin,[4] the stadium was also a setting in the Michael J. Fox/Kirk Douglas film Greedy.[2]


  1. ^ a b Barol, Bill (September 18, 1995). "Lanes Paved With Gold". Time. Archived from the original on November 3, 2012. Retrieved 2009-05-15.
  2. ^ a b c d Crowley, Jeff (April 15, 2007). "'Taj Mahal of Tenpins' is a must-see for bowlers". Evansville Courier Press. Retrieved 2009-05-15.
  3. ^ a b Land, Barbara; Myrick Land (1995). A Short History of Reno. University of Nevada Press. pp. 123–24. ISBN 978-0-87417-262-1.
  4. ^ Gelbert, Doug (2002). Film and Television Locations: A State-by-State Guidebook to Moviemaking Sites, Excluding Los Angeles. McFarland. p. 192. ISBN 978-0-7864-1293-8.

External linksEdit