About Us

Telescope Lanes: Past & Present

In 1908 Telescope Lanes, referred to as Telescope Hotel was built as a Basque boarding house and restaurant for the local sheep herders. In the 1920’s a two-lane bowling alley was added (located on what is considered the bar area now.) Thus continued to operate until 1965 when the Sampers (current owners at the time) redesigned and expanded the bowling alley to create an eight lane center with automatic pinsetter. This provided an opportunity to introduce bowling leagues.

The success of this business continued throughout the 1970’s. However during this time the restaurant and boarding houses became a hardship and the owners were forced to close them down. It wasn’t until the early 1990’s that the Samper family made the decision to retire and sell the business to Phill Kemmish. During this transition Mr. Kemmish was able to upgrade the bowling facility by putting in synthetic lanes and electronic scoring. He was also able to refurbish the boarding rooms and have them operating again as short term hotel rooms. Leagues continued and the business stayed afloat until 2007 when the property was sold to Jonathan and Audrey Karr.

Within the last eight years of the business, bowling leagues have maxed out the eight lane facility every night and all 22 rooms upstairs are currently occupied with long term tenants. In 2009, the old restaurant was renovated and turned into the Blind Onion Pizzeria and in January 2013 Cold Stone Creamery was added to make this business a family fun center for all. Telescope Lanes has a clean friendly atmosphere with up to date bowling lanes, pool tables, games and a historical bar that can satisfy anyone’s thirst or hunger. So come and see the 2012 award winning BPAA Proprietors of the Year!

telescope lanes and coldstone creamery - Elko, Nevada
telescope lanes and coldstone creamery - Elko, Nevada