Fire shuts down Parkway Lanes day of Districts

Posted By: Sarah Fili

Saturday was set to be a big day for Parkway Lanes. In the afternoon, high school district bowling would fill the lanes. Now, a fire forces owners to reschedule the tournament to February. 

Around 6:00 a.m. the phone rang and Parkway Lanes Co-Owner Bill Hoppe picked up. His cleaning crew at Parkway Lanes told him the building was rapidly filling with smoke. Bill told him to call 9-1-1 and rushed to the bowling center. Nearly a dozen fire trucks and rescue crews beat him there.

"I have been in the business 60 years and its kind of a shock kind of a bad wake up call in the morning," Hoppe said.

Parkway Lanes off 48th and Normal had caught fire, according to Lincoln Fire and Rescue, in the back of the building. The owners said through the doors, they could see that smoke was floating in the air inside the building. They said by the time they got there the fire was put out, but they are not being allowed to the back of the building. Fire Investigators told them there may still be fire in the ceiling, but that the blaze began in a mechanical room behind the machines. Nearly four hours after the fire sparked, crews remained on scene. 

"its just unbelievable its like your own personal house when you’ve been here so long," Kathy Kaup, a co-owner, said.

Thankfully, no one was injured when the smoke began billowing. Fire Inspectors have not yet given information on cause. Damage estimates are between $150,000-$200,000. They hope to reopen the bowling center next week.