Don Fox and Frank Ladanyi have close to 60 years of experience in the bowling business between them.
After 35 years of commitment to the bowlers in Glen Burnie, Fox is stepping down as manager of the Greenway Bowl, which opened in October 1955.
Ladanyi has taken over the reins of the Glen Burnie center, and he brings half a lifetime of experience with him.
Fox and his wife,Ramona, have lived in Ferndale since 1940. Until knee and back injuries curtailed his bowling, Don carried a 135 average, with a high game of 216 and a high series of 547.
Fox was more than just another guy managing a duckpin center; he was a bowler. That love of bowling shows in the center that he nurtured, one of the most respected in the bowling industry.
Now he and his wife are going to take it a little easy. They have a new motor home.
"I'm planning on spending about a third of the year on the road," Fox said. "Then maybe I'll justloaf a little bit."
Ladanyi and his wife, Linda, have lived in Glen Burnie since 1952 and raised six children: Matt, Frankie, Terri, Marie, Lisa and Gloria. They have four granddaughters.
Ladanyi started setting pins at Greenway Bowl in 1956, went into the military in 1957 and came back to Greenway Bowl in 1958. For a year he worked thesnack bar before moving on to other endeavors.
But he couldn't stay away. In 1973, he returned as weekend manager and held that position until 1986, when he became assistant manager to Fox and remained in that job until Fox decided to retire.
Ladanyi carries a 135 average and has a high game of 206 and a high set of 518. He knows the game from both ends.
His wife has a high game of 211 and carries a 111 average. They bowl doubles together on Mondays at the early leagueat Greenway Bowl and the late league at Fair Lanes Southwest.
Ladanyi also bowls in the Thursday Mixed and the House Majors at Greenway Bowl.
"We just had a good night," Donna Ratcliff said. "We used the same bowling balls, the same shoes, we didn't do anything any different, we just had a good night."
Well, yes, you could say that. It would be a heckuva understatement but you could say it.
What happened was pretty simple. Ratcliff and her husband, Herb, got hot.
On May 19, the husband-wife team really put it all together. Herb threw a 407 series, and Donna had a 491 set. That's a lot of over their respective averages, and with their handicap gave them a 1,012 total for the three team games.
"We enjoy bowling," Donna said. "It's a great sport, it's competitive and it's something that Herb and I can do together."
The Ratcliffs live in Riviera Beach and bowl at Riviera Bowl in the Friday Mixed League, the Saturday Mixed League and the Sunday Mixed League. And they're bowling in the Fair Lanes Duckpin Doubles Summer Tour.
Donna carries a 143 average with a highgame of 204 and a high series of 516. Herb has a high set of 497 anda high game of 202 on a 122 average.
Donna's 516 high set was thrown in the Fair Lanes Duckpin Doubles Summer Tour at Fair Lanes Arbutus on May 9. That helped her and Herb to a third-place finish.
Donna still is recovering from an operation on her bowling hand. Last year she underwent an operation for carpal tunnel syndrome, and the hand is returning to normal rapidly.
Herb and Donna have been bowlingfor about 18 years. Donna is a certified medical assistant for the Columbia Medical Plan, and Herb is employed at Calvert Distillery. They have two daughters, Kim, 12, and Sherri, 7.
"Don't forget that we have leagues in the summer," said Liz Pence, coordinator at Greenway Bowl Glen Burnie. "I'll find room for anyone who wants to bowlthis summer."
Pence has been associated with Greenway Bowl for 11years and bowling for a lot longer.
She lives in Glen Burnie withher husband, Jesse, and bowls in the Monday Morning Ladies League and the Tuesday Fort Meade League.
She carries a 108 average and hasa high game of 191 with a high series of 435. That average used to be about 120, but it's dropped a bit in the past few years.
Jesse, retired from the Baltimore Gas & Electric Co., had his average drop as well, and this past year he decided that it was time totake up golf. Liz says she's going to take a shot at it, too.
"But I'll never love golf the way I love bowling," she said. "Bowling is such fun, you meet so many nice people and you can do it any time. It's not too late to join a summer league and it's not too early to think about joining a fall/winter league."
Give her a call at 761-0277 to join the fun at Greenway Bowl Glen Burnie.
The 18th annual Coca-ColaNational Duckpin Youth Championships will take place Saturday at Greenway Bowl East with 32 teams competing for divisional titles. It will start at 10:30 a.m.
Teams will represent Maryland, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Virginia and metro Washington. The teams have advanced from their state/regional competitions.
The divisions consist of preps, ages 7-9; bantams, ages 10-12; juniors, ages 13-15; and majors,ages 16-21.
Donald G. Vitek's Bowling column appears every Thursday in the Anne Arundel County Sun. Bowlers are urged to give Don a call with scores and tidbits at 247-0850.