Eye On Texas: 9-Pin Bowling

Spencer Selvidge
Spencer Selvidge

I grew up in an extended family of bowlers, but once I moved to Texas bowling was pretty much out of my life. While I was earning my master’s degree in photojournalism at the University of Texas, a professor suggested I drive out to Blanco to check out a cafe with an old bowling alley in the back, the Blanco Bowling Club and Cafe. It was the start of a nearly two-and-a-half-year undertaking that eventually became the capstone project of my degree. I learned about centuries of bowling history and how 9-pin bowling came to both thrive and struggle in the primarily German enclaves of Bexar, Blanco, Comal, and Guadalupe counties. I grew to really appreciate the club members’ sense of community and tradition, and this image of their annual members’ meeting best sums up the experience. Most everyone I met, and many others I didn’t meet, are gathered here with their families and friends, just as they are every year.

See more of Austin photographer Spencer Selvidge’s work.

CALL FOR ENTRIES: Seeking Texas-based documentary photography that captures the strangest state. Please send inquiries to [email protected].

Do you think free access to journalism like this is important?
The Texas Observer depends on support from its members to keep telling stories like the one you are reading now. This fall we're looking for 200 more sustaining members—people like you who can give us as little as $0.99 per month. Your membership means we can continue shedding light on issues that might otherwise go unreported. Can we count on you?



You May Also Like:

Top