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Candlepin bowling in Boston: 10 alleys for the New England original

Who needs the bulkiness of tenpin?

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Candlepin bowling—that cousin to tenpin bowling, with lighter balls and slenderer pins—was first played in Worcester in the 1880s. No surprise, then, that it’s become a staple of New England play (it’s also big in northeastern Canada).

Here are 10 top options for candlepin bowling in the Boston region. Get your string on.

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1. Needham Bowlaway

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16 Chestnut St
Needham, MA 02492
(781) 449-4060
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The eight-lane alley goes back more than a century.

Zack S./Yelp

2. Flatbread Brighton & Brighton Bowl

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76 Guest St
Brighton, MA 02135
(617) 903-4595
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This relatively recent outpost includes a lot of pizza options.

3. Ron's Gourmet Ice Cream and Twentieth Century Bowling Alley

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1231 Hyde Park Ave
Hyde Park, MA 02136
(617) 364-5274
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The name kind of says it all: Wholesome fun with bowling and ice cream.

4. Lucky Strike—Fenway

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145 Ipswich St
Boston, MA 02215
(617) 437-0300
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This alley is part of the Jillian’s/Lucky Strike complex near Fenway Park: 70,000 square feet of all sorts of fun.

5. Kings Dining & Entertainment

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50 Dalton St
Boston, MA 02115
(617) 266-2695
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The Back Bay location of this chain has dining and other gaming options.

Kings Dining & Entertainment/Yelp

6. Lucky Strike Social Somerville

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325 Revolution Dr
Somerville, MA 02145
(857) 997-8000
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This Assembly Row outpost of Lucky Strike opened in April 2018.

7. Boston Bowl

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820 Morrissey Blvd
Dorchester, MA 02122
(617) 825-3800
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This alley is open 24 hours and touts itself as particularly family-friendly. There are also outside batting cages.

8. Boston Candlepin

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543 E Broadway
Boston, MA 02127
(617) 464-4858
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Southie. Candlepin. Not much else to say about this family-run joint.

9. Central Park Lanes

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10 Saratoga St
East Boston, MA 02128
(617) 567-7073

This Eastie standard comes with few frills, though that’s kind of the point.

Voravut/Yelp

10. Sacco's Bowl Haven

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2823, 45 Day St
Somerville, MA 02144
(617) 776-0552
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This bowling-and-nosh spot predates World War II.

Tim Sackton/Flickr

1. Needham Bowlaway

16 Chestnut St, Needham, MA 02492
Zack S./Yelp

The eight-lane alley goes back more than a century.

16 Chestnut St
Needham, MA 02492

2. Flatbread Brighton & Brighton Bowl

76 Guest St, Brighton, MA 02135

This relatively recent outpost includes a lot of pizza options.

76 Guest St
Brighton, MA 02135

3. Ron's Gourmet Ice Cream and Twentieth Century Bowling Alley

1231 Hyde Park Ave, Hyde Park, MA 02136

The name kind of says it all: Wholesome fun with bowling and ice cream.

1231 Hyde Park Ave
Hyde Park, MA 02136

4. Lucky Strike—Fenway

145 Ipswich St, Boston, MA 02215

This alley is part of the Jillian’s/Lucky Strike complex near Fenway Park: 70,000 square feet of all sorts of fun.

145 Ipswich St
Boston, MA 02215

5. Kings Dining & Entertainment

50 Dalton St, Boston, MA 02115
Kings Dining & Entertainment/Yelp

The Back Bay location of this chain has dining and other gaming options.

50 Dalton St
Boston, MA 02115

6. Lucky Strike Social Somerville

325 Revolution Dr, Somerville, MA 02145

This Assembly Row outpost of Lucky Strike opened in April 2018.

325 Revolution Dr
Somerville, MA 02145

7. Boston Bowl

820 Morrissey Blvd, Dorchester, MA 02122

This alley is open 24 hours and touts itself as particularly family-friendly. There are also outside batting cages.

820 Morrissey Blvd
Dorchester, MA 02122

8. Boston Candlepin

543 E Broadway, Boston, MA 02127

Southie. Candlepin. Not much else to say about this family-run joint.

543 E Broadway
Boston, MA 02127

9. Central Park Lanes

10 Saratoga St, East Boston, MA 02128
Voravut/Yelp

This Eastie standard comes with few frills, though that’s kind of the point.

10 Saratoga St
East Boston, MA 02128

10. Sacco's Bowl Haven

2823, 45 Day St, Somerville, MA 02144
Tim Sackton/Flickr

This bowling-and-nosh spot predates World War II.

2823, 45 Day St
Somerville, MA 02144