L.L.Bean has signed as the title sponsor for a Professional Bowlers Association tournament that will be hosted at Bayside Bowl in Portland this spring.
Bayside Bowl announced Wednesday that it will host the 2017 L.L.Bean PBA League Elias Cup and the MaineQuarterly.com Roth/Holman Doubles Championship this April.
"Bayside Bowl and the Portland community can't wait for the PBA to come back to town," Charlie Mitchell, managing partner, said in the release announcing the events. "The Elias Cup and the Roth/Holman Doubles Championship showcase the world's best bowlers, most passionate fans and incredible sponsors that realize what a big deal this event is for our state."
More than 3,200 of the best bowlers from 27 countries compete in PBA Tour. It's now in its 57th consecutive year of nationally televised competition, reaching bowling fans around the world who follow PBA activities through the PBA Network, which includes Xtra Frame, the PBA's exclusive online bowling channel, ESPN and CBS Sports Network.
"Bayside Bowl is excited to welcome L.L.Bean as the title sponsor of this year's PBA League Elias Cup. L.LBean is Maine's iconic brand," Justin Alfond, co-owner of Bayside Bowl, said in the release. "We are also thrilled to continue our partnership with the Maine Office of Tourism. We couldn't have picked better partners to showcase the best of Maine to the country."
"We're super excited to be partnering with two great organizations, the PBA and Bayside Bowl, on this fun, unique event," added Chuck Gannon, L.L.Bean's corporate advertising manager. "This is a rare opportunity right in our own backyard, so we're really happy to be involved. Plus, bowling is a great activity for folks of all ages, especially families."
PBA Commissioner Tom Clark said the PBA, which came to Bayside for events in April 2015 and 2016, is eager to return to Portland.
"The PBA is fired up to bring the Elias Cup back and to showcase for the first time the Roth/Holman Doubles Championship" he said. "Bayside Bowl has the best audience in bowling and our players love Portland."
In its previous events at the Bayside Bowl, the PBA events had an $1.5 million economic impact each year, Mainebiz reported last October. The events, broadcast on ESPN, put Portland on the spotlight before 2 million views and also drew more than 1,000 spectators who filled hotel rooms, ate at restaurants and shopped during the spring shoulder season.
This year's PBA events will take place from April 9-16.
The MaineQuarterly.com Roth/Holman Doubles Championship will be aired live on ESPN on April 16 from 1-3 p.m.
The L.L.Bean PBA League Elias Cup will air on ESPN on four consecutive Sundays from 1-3 p.m. on April 23, April 30, May 7 and May 14.
Bayside Bowl opened its doors in 2010 as Maine's premier bowling entertainment center. It's 12 lanes, a full bar with 12 beers on tap, an award-winning kitchen, live music and the Bowl Portland bowling league. In March it will unveil its expanded venue, complete with eight new bowling lanes, a mezzanine and bar overlooking the new space and a rooftop deck.
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