Profile Picture

Clare Wittman

Pioneers of Yesterday

Associated with bowling at the age of 14 in 1929, setting pins at the old Ran-Ham; became proficient and bowled in the better house leagues there during his early years. Was employed by Brunswick from 1940-195l, building or resurfacing lanes during the summer while managing bowling centers during the winter. Managed Ran-Ham and Midway Gardens during the late 1930's and 1940's; moved to Harkins Recreation as manager after building that center in 1947. After leaving Brunswick in 195l, established Modern Resurfacing, a lane building and resurfacing operation, and enjoyed drilling balls at Berman's Sporting Goods for about ten years. Operated Modern Resurfacing through the mid-1960's and established his credibility supporting the growing needs of the games, sponsored many teams in leagues and tournaments, and supported the fledgling professional circuits of the times.
Recruited Mike Schmid, together established the first Pro Shop in a bowling center in the Twin Cities. In 1965 joined AMF and continued to serve the maintenance area until his retirement in 1977. His lane building, resurfacing and supply business involved him in establishing and maintaining a responsibility for over 75% of the bowling centers in a five-state area over a 37 year period. Participated in the City league for both Hamm's and Schmidt's beer teams and Godbout Funeral Home. Bowled in the Harkin's Classic and Stahl House All Star leagues. Established charter member and secretary of the St. Paul 700 Club were his most gratifying accomplishments. Won the 1947 700 Club tournament, participated in National ABC, Tribune Classic and Peterson Classic on numerous occasions. Established Masonic league of 16 teams which is still active and was presented their Sportsmanship trophy in 1975. For ten years prior to his death served as Director on the Greater St. Paul Bowling Assn. Was an asset and an influence as an instructor advising and training in the maintenance and management techniques, teaching and promoting bowling to build the game into what it is today. Representative of his influence is the involvement of his family; three sons in National, State, local and commercial areas of the game.

Last Updated : Jan-01-2013