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Friday, April 22, 2011 - 6:29pm
With the NFL in the middle of a lockout, how about a few good strikes at Cowboys Stadium?
The cavernous home of the Dallas Cowboys will host the U.S. Women's Open this summer, the first time a bowling event has been held at the billion-dollar showplace of Jerry Jones.
Shiny wooden lanes will be placed on either side of the famous Cowboys star at midfield and there will be temporary seats on the field for the June 30 event.
Pro bowler Stefanie Nation said Friday it's exciting to have "the pinnacle of women's bowling" at the site of last season's Super Bowl.
"It's incredible," she said. "This is going to be the first time a major women's [bowling] event will be held at a nontraditional venue."
The 80,000-seat stadium in suburban Arlington has hosted concerts, bull riding, boxing matches, yoga and motocross races -- but never before bowling.
The Open finals will feature the world's top five female bowlers who advance through the tournament, which will begin June 24 with qualifying rounds at AMF Euless Lanes in the Fort Worth suburb.
The finalists will compete for a $50,000 prize and $5,000 Tiffany & Co. gift certificate. The two bowlers also have a shot at $1 million if the roll a perfect game.
The hope is for the event to break the bowling attendance record set in 1995, when 7,212 watched the Men's Open at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, said Steve Johnson, executive director of the nonprofit Bowling Proprietors' Association of America, the event's organizer.
Usually the tournaments are held in bowling centers limited to the few hundred who can squeeze in.
"That's one of the beautiful things about Cowboys Stadium," Johnson said. "We can get a lot of people in there."