There is no age limit when it comes to lawn bowling.
The sport is generally accessible, as long as you have the agility to hold and roll bowls.
And the Coronado Lawn Bowling Club, whose history dates to 1935, welcomes anyone who wants to give it a try.
In fact, the first lesson is on the house.
Berie Grobe, who has been the president of the club three times, moved to Coronado in 1999 with her husband.
They often drove past the bowling green, which is behind the Coronado Public Library, but she said they did not notice it at first. A year later, in 2010, she signed up for a class with her husband.
She’s been bowling ever since.
Grobe said she loves that lawn bowling is a social sport, and the club provides a community for her.
In the game, there can be periods of time when the players wait for their competitors to roll their bowls. Grobe said that as you wait your turn, you get to know them. She said the club is like a second family.
It takes about 15 minutes to learn to do it, and then, for the rest of your life, you’re trying to perfect it.”-Coronado resident Berie Grobe
“What I like about lawn bowling is it’s a different kind of sport,” said Grobe. “It takes about 15 minutes to learn to do it, and then, for the rest of your life, you’re trying to perfect it. Every game is different, so it makes it interesting.”
No distinction by age, gender or size
Grobe said lawn bowling is one of the few sports where there is no distinction by age.
She also said there is no advantage to being male or female because power is not essential to the game, adding it’s all about finesse.
“People can play all their lives,” said Grobe. “You just have to be able to bend.”
According to Grobe, the sport attracts the retirement community because time is crucial.
Games usually take 2 ½ hours.
Grobe bowls approximately six hours a week, and she bowls three days a week during “social bowling,” which takes place on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon.
The legend of Bill Hiscock and one regret
The club, which has between 100 and 120 members, puts on several events every year, and Grobe’s favorite is the Bill Hiscock Tournament, named after a 98-year-old lawn bowler.
When Hiscock moved to Coronado, he visited Balboa Park, and the first thing he saw was a bowling green.
He parked the car and walked over to a person who was bowling.
Hiscock told him he was interested in the game, so he rolled a couple of bowls and gave the man a check to purchase his own set. Hiscock joined the San Diego Lawn Bowling Club in Balboa Park in 1972.
He is the longest-serving member and is in the Bowls USA Hall of Fame, which honors individuals for their achievements and contributions to lawn bowling off the green.
He was the president of the Coronado Club from 2006 to 2010.
“I’ve belonged to many, many organizations in my life, and I have never met a better group of people than the lawn bowlers,” said Hiscock. “Their experiences in life are all different, except they’re nice people.”
Hiscock has been bowling for 50 years.
“I love the sport,” said Hiscock. “I only have one regret: I didn’t start younger.”