Strike A Chord: How South County Lanes in Payson is mixing music and bowling

If you’ve been hearing a lot more than pins being knocked down at the South County Lanes in Payson, you’re not mistaken.

The sounds of local music have been making waves throughout the decades-old, family-run bowling alley, and owner Bud Marrott said that not only does he welcome the new addition to the local attraction, but he is all for it.

According to Marrott, when things started to open up again during the pandemic, he invited some local bands, particularly students from the Olde Main Studios in Springville, to come to the lanes to perform shows. He said that what began as something small and maybe even temporary, grew to something that is bringing the community together in a collective love for local music.

“During COVID as everything was reopening, we actually brought the kids (from Olde Main Studios) over here to do their summer concerts in order to have a place for them to play, and since then we’ve started doing concerts on a regular basis over here,” Marrott explained. 

Rory Childs is the owner at Olde Main Studios, and he said that being able to have his students perform at the bowling alley has been really good for them. 

“I run a music and art school and studio in Springville, and we have a youth band program where we put kids in bands together, and we’re going to have a few of them playing at the bowling alley in the summer.”

Marrott, who inherited the alley through his family, said that having bands play has actually been enjoyable for him as a musician himself. In fact, he and Childs play in a blues alternative band together, and Marrot also teaches guitar lessons and owns a recording studio up the street from the bowling alley. 

Marrott said that he hopes to invest in some projects that will improve the venue so that more bands will be able perform there. 

“We just keep reinvesting the admissions into improving the venue,” Marriott said. “Now not only do Rory’s youth bands play here, but I’ve got several other high school aged acts book shows over here on a regular basis, as well as some older cover bands.”

Marrott explained that his venue is unique because many bands are only able to play in bars, and he wants to be able to have what he calls, and all-ages venue. 

“A lot of the bands are able to bring in friends and family that otherwise wouldn’t be able to see their show,” he said. 

We do a blues jam on the first Thursday night of the month and then we do two open mic nights on the following two Thursdays and then on the fourth Thursday, we do a singer-songwriter showcase. Along with those, we usually do one or two shows a month on the sound stage in the attic.”

In case you are wondering, bowling will still very much be a main attraction to the South County Lanes (as well as laser tag, arcades and billiards), but Marrott said he’s excited to add to the beautiful sounds that radiate throughout his arena. 

For more information on what’s happening at South County Lanes, go to Olde Main Studios can also be found on Facebook for those interested.

Arianne Brown
Arianne Brown
Arianne Brown is a mom of nine who writes columns for many local and national publications. She currently resides in Payson, and enjoys looking for good happenings in her area and sharing them for others to read about. For more of her stories, search "A Mother's Write" on Facebook.

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