ROXBURY, NJ – Circle Bowl & Entertainment, a TAPinto Roxbury sponsor, is one of Roxbury’s longest-operating businesses and it’s throwing a party Saturday (Oct. 5) to celebrate.
The bowling alley known as Circle Lanes began operating in 1959, said Event Manager Jodi Dougherty. It’s been a family-run endeavor ever since.
“It was my grandfather Andrew and my uncle Andy, my father’s brother, who opened it,” Dougherty said.
She said her uncle died in 1978, leaving the business to her uncle and to her father, Edward. After her grandfather died in the 1980s, Dougherty’s father “became the sole proprietor,” she said.
But the extended family was always involved and, in June 2000, Edward Dougherty handed over the reins to Dougherty’s brother, Keith. The business has been operated for the past 19 years by the brother and sister team.
Major change came in 2015 when the family invested about $5 million to thoroughly modernize and expand the business, adding an arcade room, laser tag, a VIP room and a pub named Big Ed’s after Dougherty’s father.
Two years ago, the Roxbury Area Chamber of Commerce gave Circle Bowl & Entertainment a beautification award.
Saturday’s celebration will not only be a 60th anniversary party but also an “Octoberfest” of sorts, said Dougherty. The event starts at 2 p.m. and runs until 10 p.m. and will feature an outdoor beer garden, contests, prizes, giveaways, games, a DJ and a live band.
“60 years has come and gone in the blink of an eye,” says the company’s Facebook page. “Although Circle has changed dramatically on the inside we have always stayed the same small Circle Bowl family. We love our long-term and new customers and hope you can all make it to this special day to celebrate the people that have kept us in business.”
Dougherty said there will be some “rare beers on tap” at Big Ed’s and a special offer for those who come: $60 for an hour of bowling, a game of laser tag and an arcade game card.