Erie Bowling Lanes Announces Permanent Closure

Erie Lanes in Juniata Park / File Photo: T. Lineman / Juniata News

When Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf ordered businesses to close in the month of March for two weeks to ‘flatten the curve’ of the COVID-19 outbreak, businesses such as Erie Bowling Lanes thought they’d be opening again on March 28th. Sadly, some will not reopen, and Erie Lanes seems to be the latest casualty.

Pictured in March / Photo: T. Lineman / Juniata News

Jon Kroljic, owner of Erie Lanes, announced that the entertainment staple in Juniata Park could not survive the shutdown. It’s a giant blow to the neighborhood.

“I have been at Erie Lanes almost 11 years,” he posted on social media. “We have had many great times at the center together. It saddens me that I made the decision to close the doors but decisions needed to be made. We often make decisions sometimes with our brain and other times with our hearts.  The brain will make sound business decisions where the heart can weigh heavy over that decision. I have been in the bowling business for 41 years and managed many centers but I will say the relationships I have had with the Erie Lanes bowlers will never be topped, we are a big family.”

Kroljic said that there have been false rumors that the reason behind the shut down was that Wawa was buying the property, or he was bought out to leave the location. “The truth is simple, due to Covid and the loss of leagues that were not going to be starting along with the restrictions of the CDC that have to be put in place put a strain on the business leading me to my decision. There is no conspiracy or financial gain on my part it was purely a business decision.”

While he is closing the business, Bowling is in Kroljic’s blood, and he wished his customers, who he refers to as family, the best in future bowling. “I hope that as you move to other centers and other leagues that you are treated well and appreciated. No business such as ours can survive without you.  Please keep good communications with the management of the centers you go to and I hope the leagues will thrive. Feel free to call me if you have any questions and again I just want to say THANK YOU and please know the we APPRECIATED you at Erie Lanes and I hope to see you in a bowling center soon.”

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