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$500,000 Bowling Event to Be Held in Atlantic City in '88

February 22, 1987|Associated Press

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — The richest tournament in professional bowling, the $500,000 U.S. Open, will be held in Atlantic City next year, officials say.

The U.S. Open will be the second major tournament for the Showboat Hotel, Casino & Bowling Center, which is scheduled to open next month. The casino hotel has already announced it will hold the $150,000 Showboat Atlantic City Open, to begin April 6.

The U.S. Open will likely be held in March 1988, but no date has been set, tournament officials said Wednesday. The Professional Bowlers Association is now arranging its 1988 winter tour, on which the U.S. Open is one stop.

"I think our longstanding relationship with the PBA over the last 26 or 27 years made us a pretty good choice," said Al Hoff, vice president for sports and bowling at the Showboat.

That the Showboat has not yet opened "is a bit unusual, but it's not like it's a brand-new company we're working with," said Bonnie Zitek, of the Bowling Proprietors Association of America. "We've worked with Al Hoff and his staff on many occasions. They have such a good reputation. It makes it a very attractive site."

A field of 240 will compete for the $100,000 first prize. A total of 144 bowlers will be chosen by the PBA through its points system. The remaining 96 entries--open to any professional or amateur--will be decided in nationwide qualifying tournaments conducted by the BPAA.

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