Sunday, October 30, 2016

Orleans in Vegas - Hawaiian Invitational

2016 Hawaiian Invitational
1st squad scores
After a 2-week absence, I have returned. I missed October 16 due to a 7+ hour storm related power outage in my neighborhood. On October 23, I was in Las Vegas bowling my first Hawaiian Invitational.

The Hawaiian Invitational is an annual bowling tournament held at the Orleans Hotel. This is the same place where Liz Johnson won this summer's PWBA Las Vegas Open.

Like the Asian American Bowling Association (AABA) tournaments I bowl at 4th Street Bowl in San Jose and National Bowling Stadium in Reno, a participating bowler must be of Chinese or Japanese ancestry, or bowl in a Chinese or Japanese league.

In my long gone softball days, the big Asian tournament invitational hard core players attended was Sumitomo in Sacramento. I had informal invitations to come watch, but never got invited to play.

Of the Asian tournaments I bowl, the Hawaiian Invitational has the most participants (all 70 lanes at the Orleans are taken). Roster submissions begin early in the year, and payment (room, optional meal plan and tournament costs) must be paid in April, 6 months before the tournament date in October.

Above is a photo of my team's 1st squad scores. If you've ever bowled in leagues and tournaments, you'll notice scores are 4 games, rather than the usual 3. Overall, we didn't do badly, but total pins with handicap, was at least 500 pins from the top team scores.

For most bowlers, the best perk of the tournament is the doubles jackpot. You can choose anyone bowling the same squad time as a partner. The fee is only $3 per bowler with no limits on partners. Bowl well enough and a $6 team investment can result in over $1K prize money. Not to worry, the usual bracket and side pot bets are available too.

I had loads of fun. I consider these tournaments as reunions. It's great to see people you once bowled with in league or in other tournaments. Between squads, there's plenty of time to hit the casinos and slot machines, catch a movie in the hotel's multiplex cinema, or eat yourself silly at the buffet or any of the hundreds of nearby restaurants.

In the words of T-800 Model 101, "I'll be back."

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