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Skee-ball: Hub letting the good times roll

The newest pub phenomenon is brewing in Boston and it may roll right over dart leagues and trivia nights.

The newest pub phenomenon is brewing in Boston and it may roll right over dart leagues and trivia nights.



Tonight, bar flies can gather at The Greatest Bar and test their skills at a childhood favorite — skee-ball.



The bar will be home to the first ever skee-ball league in the Northeast.



“We are trying to get people to come out by doing a mini-tournament [tonight], and trying to get them to see what these new machines are about,” said Duke DeVilling, vice president of SkeeNation’s Northeast operations.



When DeVilling, a North Carolina native, moved to Boston with his wife, he wanted to bring a piece of his past with him.



DeVilling approached owners of The Greatest Bar and pitched the idea of putting the machines in the pub to get a league rolling — an activity that became a huge hit in his hometown and surrounding cities, he said.



Two weeks ago, the “Beer Ball” machines were installed.



“What it has become in our other cities is something to look forward to every week,” said DeVilling. “You get to have a couple beers, relax after work, but there is also a competitive nature mixed in.”



Bar owner Peter Lucido said the machines are an updated version of the nostalgic childhood ones.

“They are more like a big pinball machine,” he said. “It has all the bells and whistles and it challenges you a little bit. It’s kind of like mixing Beer Pong with skee-ball.”



Lucido said already the games have garnered more attention on weeknights, but he expects it to increase more when tournament time begins.



DeVilling said he anticipates the trend traveling to surrounding bars and cities, expanding the Boston league.



How it rolls



Boston Skeeball League’s first season will start at the end of August, consisting of teams of three, playing on Thursday evenings. On league nights, teams roll 10 frames per person at $1 per frame. Each week participants roll against a different team in the league. The games last about 45 minutes.



Follow Steve Annear on Twitter @steveannear

 
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