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Friendly Valley lawn bowlers: On a roll

Friendly Valley lawn bowling club, active for decades, has members over 90 years old

Posted: January 29, 2010 10:20 p.m.
Updated: January 30, 2010 4:55 a.m.

Julianna Csereklyei, left, and Flo Barclay cheer as their team member knocks a competitor's ball out of the way, putting their team's ball closer to the "jack ball" to win the game during a Friendly Valley Lawn Bowling Club match on Thursday.

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For a small group of Friendly Valley residents, there's nothing better than a game of lawn bowling.

"You go home and you are relaxed," Irma Patton, 77, said. "I love it."

Patton serves as historian for the Friendly Valley Lawn Bowls Club, which dates back to 1966. The club is a member of the central district of the Southwest Division of the U.S. Lawn Bowls Association, club President Jack Quinn said.

The club, the only one in the Santa Clarita Valley, plays regularly at Friendly Valley's outdoor court. While they participate in tournaments, the sport is a chance for Quinn and others to make new friends.

"We don't develop cliques," Quinn, 82, said. "You can beat someone and still be friends with them."

The group regularly hosts social activities like picnics, holiday parties and Bunco nights, Quinn said. The club also offers lessons for those interested. The club hits the bowling green on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays for games.

The club counts about 30 active members, 10 of which play regularly.

Quinn and Patton hope to boost membership within Friendly Valley but outside of the senior living community, as well. Nonresidents who are 55 and older are able to join the club.

"We took lesson and enjoyed it very much," Patton said.

Dorothy Mahan, 95, spent nearly two decades lawn bowling before retiring from the sport. Her love of the game took her across the country where she and her late husband would participate in tournaments. She helped found the club at Friendly Valley.

"Win or lose, you feel good afterwards," she said.


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