For 57 years, not much has changed at the venue on Penn Avenue. From the cowboy and cowgirl murals on the walls, to logos and light fixtures – much of it is still in place. That's exactly the way 27-year-old Gretchen Gardebring remembers things.
"When I was a little kid, I would come here with my best friend, we'd sit up at the counter and be like, yeah we want to open up a bowling alley when we get older with the best food just like this one," she said.
Then, there's Bruce Remak and his bowling club, playing in honor of their late friend Al Mohr, who used to hang there all the time.
"I think the Lariat got sad when Al passed away and it has to close because Al's here no more," Remak said.
That's not quite the reason owner John Powers is selling to his next door neighbor. He's 82 and he's just done with the place. General manger Brandi James also said the offer was simply too good to refuse, especially with emerging competition, like Brunswick Zone, Pinstripes and other venues with laser tag and video games. Lariat's closure is even harder for Derek Knight, who just started working here.
"I finally get the best job, almost a dream job, and then all of a sudden, it's taken away," he said.
Not to mention, Lariat drew plenty of rock stars and celebrities in its day, the Rolling Stones, Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood and the Beastie Boys among them.
Last party on Saturday
On Saturday, there will be a huge blowout party with reduced prices on drinks and free snacks from 2 to 7 p.m. Doors officially close on Sunday at 6 p.m.
More information: http://www.lariatlanes.com/