A Virtual Event. A Real Impact.

Bowl for Kids 2020 Goes Virtual!

With the current climate and government mandates surrounding the coronavirus, Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Bowl for Kids (BFK) event is going ‘virtual’ this year.  While there will be no physical bowling celebration, the virtual event is set to offer participants just as much fun. BFK is one of BBBS’ signature fundraising events and it is more important than ever for as many people as possible to participate.

“Many of the kids we serve face difficult circumstances, even in the best of times. The outbreak of the coronavirus puts even more pressure on families in our community. They need our help now more than ever,” said Brent Fields, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters. “Our work is critical.”

So, what does “going virtual” mean for this event? “We will continue to fundraise as usual though our website,” said Lauren Portley, VP of Development for BBBS. “BFK has traditionally been online, peer to peer fundraising. So, we will continue to have people sign up online, form a team and get others to sign up as participants and donors. That component is still the same. But with the government mandate on gathering, we needed to find a way to keep moving forward with the event – thus, virtual bowl. Because at the end of the day, we’re still serving kids and they need us. This event typically ensures funding to support 150 kids and families.”

Even though there will be no gathering to bowl at Highland Lanes, there is still fun to be had! “We will have a costume contest, for sure,” said Lauren. “We may have participants submit photos or video clips where they are bowling in their backyard or in their home in their costume. We will still have door prize drawings, swag bags and t-shirts.”

“Everyone is at home and starting to get a little stir-crazy,” said Lauren. “Let’s take time that would be boring and turn it into something that is fun and productive. Email your friends, have a competition to see who can come up with the craziest costume or who can raise the most. This is our norm right now, so let’s make it as fun and beneficial to others as we can.”

Sponsors will still receive the benefits they’ve always received. There will be social media “shout outs”, as well as recognition in email blasts, on the BFK web page, and on BFK t-shirts. “We will do prizes, awards and special bowling pins for our top fundraisers and top industry bowl teams,” said Lauren. “All of that will still be going on and will receive recognition even though we won’t be doing it in person or at the bowling alley.”

Why is all of this so important? “We are still serving kids,” said Lauren. “Bigs are still reaching out to Littles, we’re still in contact with families, we’re still working. It is critical we’re able to fund our mission, and we do that through BFK and other events. We need to reach our goal of $150,000 because it helps us serve our kids here and in surrounding counties.”

How can you help? “Form a team, join a team, go on social media and spread the word about the event,” said Lauren. “Just let people know you’re participating. Last year, I posted on Facebook that I was forming a team and I met my fundraising goal within 2 hours. Remember, the number one reason people donate is because they’re asked, and they’re asked for something specific. You’d be surprised at who will give you what you ask for, or more.”

Keep up with all that is happening with the event and stay tuned to new aspects of this virtual experience by visiting the BFK web page at www.BowlForKidsAustin.org or the BBBS Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/BigMentoring . “There will be a lot of cool things coming,” said Lauren. “One of our sponsors, Pizza Hut, will be offering a lot of fun stuff for virtual bowlers. You don’t want to miss out!”


  • Every individual fundraiser who reaches $125 will receive an official Bowl For Kids 2020 t-shirt!
  • Every team that raises $750 will receive some special perks from our supporters and sponsors.
  • Every team that reaches Very Important Bowler (VIB) status by raising $1,250 (which funds a match for a whole year) will receive VIB swag bags, t-shirts and cool gifts from our supporters and sponsors!

And most importantly, all of the funds raised will go directly to providing and supporting mentoring relationships for kids right here in Central Texas.

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