Robin Hood Lanes to close its doors April 25; Dollar Day farewell April 24

The iconic Robin Hood Lanes, an Edmonds landmark since 1960, will close for good on Thursday, April 25. Demolition of the building is planned for May. It will be replaced by a new Walgreen's Drug and probably a bank.
The iconic Robin Hood Lanes, an Edmonds landmark since 1960, will close for good on Thursday, April 25. Demolition of the building is planned for May. It will be replaced by a new Walgreen’s Drug and probably a bank.

Story and photos by Larry Vogel

An Edmonds fixture for more than 50 years, Robin Hood Lanes bowling alley will close its doors for good on April 25.

“It’s been a great run,” said Charlie Pascoe, who along with partner Mike Gubsch has owned and managed the business since 2000. “We love the Edmonds community and we’ll miss our hundreds of loyal customers.”

Many in the community feel the same way. In addition to its popular bowling leagues and kids and seniors programs, Robin Hood has hosted occasional regional tournaments drawing bowlers from up and down the west coast.

Long-time Edmonds residents Bill and Barbara Halseth, both senior citizens, have been loyal bowlers at Robin Hood for more than 15 years. “We’re actually relative newcomers,” said Bill. “There’s regulars who have been bowling here for more than 40 years, at least one of whom is in his 90s.”

Robin Hood's 24 lanes will be open to the public for a special farewell dollar day event on Wednesday, April 24.  In addition to dollar bowling, the owners are offering dollar beers, hot dogs and tacos that day.
Robin Hood’s 24 lanes will be open to the public for a special farewell dollar day event on Wednesday, April 24. In addition to dollar bowling, the owners are offering dollar beers, hot dogs and tacos that day.

Pascoe and Gubsch are planning a special expanded “dollar day” event for Wednesday, April 24 to say goodbye to the Edmonds community.

“In addition to dollar bowling all day long, we’ll have dollar beers, dollar hot dogs and dollar tacos,” said Pascoe. “We’ve suspended our leagues for that day, so all alleys will be open for public bowling. So come on down, bowl a few games, have some food, and help us mark the passing of an era.”

Robin Hood Lanes will operate through the following day. Thursday evening the last ball will roll down the alley, and the loud crack of a speeding bowling ball slamming into pins will pass into Edmonds history.

According to Tom Rocca, spokesperson for site developer California-based Seven Hills Properties, Robin Hood Lanes will be replaced by a new Walgreen’s Drug Store and a second building currently intended as a bank (no tenant for the bank has yet been identified). Look for work to begin sometime in May, with completion around the end of the year.


  1. Well, I have to say that Edmonds could certainly use another bank. I was worried that there wasn’t one on that side of the street yet.

  2. Well I guess the rumors were true! I could not believe that Walgreens would that dense as to think loyal Edmonds residents will leave our home grown Bartell Drugs and run over to an out of town firm. Another Bank???maybe there is more money in Edmonds than I thought!! At least there will be more jobs. Me, I will miss the bowling alley. Time marches on!!

  3. Definitely a sad thing. I for one will not forsake Bartell’s or the QFC pharmacy. We don’t really need a Walgreen. And, another bank? My goodness, just what our city really needs. Sad.

  4. Hate to see Robin Hood Lanes go. I bowled all four years of high school there and it was a great place to kick back and have fun. Not looking forward to having to go to Lynnwood Bowl & Skate or Spin Alley. Just not the same… We don’t need a Walgreens! I hate Walgreens, hopefully hardly anyone shops there and they will have to close it.

  5. I am so sad!! My parents bowl here and have made so many new friends. They are extremely sad to see it go. A great place for kids to have some safe fun, and for Seniors living in Edmonds where will they go?? Why does Edmonds need another Drugstore and pharmacy when they already have Bartell’s and QFC, and another Bank??? It would be great to see if they instead could just spruce up the old Robin Hood Lanes. So sorry to see a part of Edmonds history go. So sad and disappointing.

  6. I remember the days my grandparents would take me to Robin Hood lanes – good memories. Another iconic business will now be part of the past.

    And Tim – well said. We definitely need another bank to represent the other side of the street.

  7. Thank god. Another walgreens and a bank. I was barely making it work with the others anda rite aid across the street. I will miss that place very very much . 🙁

  8. I’m so relieved that the world will have finally another Walgreen’s. Our long nightmare is over. Edmonds was dangerously out of compliance, having a Bartell’s without a Walgreen’s on the same block.

  9. So sad. I will never set foot inside the Walgreens that will be built later and I won’t patronize any other Walgreens either. And a new bank, too? I wasn’t aware of that. Well, I won’t be banking there.

  10. I remember going there with my parents in the 1960s for burgers and fries, my family’s version of dining out. The smell of a bowling alley and the crash of pins while eating–doesn’t get any better than that. Just can’t imagine Westgate without Robin Hood Lanes and that iconic sign.

  11. Ugh. A Walgreen’s and a bank? How underwhelming! They could have done something really nice with that space. Some sort of mixed use resi\commercial would have been much better. WALGREENS!?!?! I’m with Kathy, I won’t spend a scent at Walgreen’s. I detest their strategy of opening a store everywhere Bartell’s is. Why don’t they come up with a compelling\original approach?

  12. Just what Edmonds needs another bank!!!!! Then also insult us with a national chain for a drugstore to compete with our home grown and beloved Bartell store!!! I have no idea who these geniuses are that own our property and come up with these lame ideas; but I sure do wish that they would move out of Edmonds if they are local!!!

  13. Sad sad thing! I was born in 1960 in Edmonds. Hung out there all the time as a kid in the 60’s and 70’s. My Mom was in leagues there in the 60’s. I moved to Idaho at the end of the 90’s so hadn’t been there in a while. Are the women’s bathrooms still pink with the large room of all mirrors?? Lol! As a kid I thought those were the coolest bathrooms I had ever seen! Seriously tho…..that is truly a piece of Edmonds history that will be gone forever. So sad!

  14. Free Market, Drug stores, and Banks. In a free market the land owner should be able to get a fair market return on the value of the property. It appeared that the bowling alley could not make a profit by paying fair market prices for the land and building. Banks want to be near the money to attract deposits and do what banks do. Edmonds people have more money that average. That is one reason we have so many banks. National brand drug stores have business plans that suggest to them where they can locate and gain market share. They have development strategies that are supported by the shareholders. Walgreens shares 5 years ago were $35 and now $48, a 37% increase in 5 years. They must feel coming to Edmonds will be good for their business. In a free market we have the choice to shop where we want and bowl where we want, and bank where we want. All that is happened here is we will use less gas to go to Walgreens if that is on our shopping list and we will use less gas to go to the brand of bank that may come here. And of course we will have to drive further to bowl. It turns out the closest bowling locations are located on land that has less value than the Edmonds location. Edmonds land values are higher than most of our neighbors except for Woodway.

    Woodway has a model of no businesses in town and subcontracting services when possible. They shop and bank outside of their town and pay less tax per dollar of value than most of their neighbors.

    So the free market is at work. Would could we have done to change what is happening? The study done by the U of W for Westgate gives us some clues. We the citizens could have taxed ourselves and bought the property and keep the bowling alley and made it a part of the parks and recreation program. We could have purchased the property and building and turned into a farmers market, both indoor and outdoor. Or we could have just made it a park.

    Sadly things change but likely with the added investments in land and buildings on the site the city will gain in one time tax revenues and the tax base will be enhanced and we will all pay a little less portion of the taxes. If Walgreens increases the overall sales then we get more sales tax to support the city. The bank will not pay sales ta

  15. Wow, computers and those who use them. Must have pressed the wrong button and did not complete my post above. To finish. Banks do not pay sales taxes.

    Last point, promise!!

    The collective effort to save the bowling alley was not successful nor did any effort to buy the property for uses other than a bank and drug store. Collectively we could have purchased the property but we didn’t. So if we collectively want a different outcome then we need to act before they become issues. Take a careful look at what we collectively said in the Strategic Plan and lets get going NOW on the things that have the most public support. You can see the plan on the city web site and the plan has been approved by 6 out of 7 on the council, so their is broad support by the voters and our elected officials. Let get going before the free market does something else folks do not like.

  16. I remember that place well. I use to bowl there in my teen years. Won a trophy back then for Hi-game. Will miss seeing it when I drive around that area.

  17. It’s sad to see the Robin Hood Lanes go. Yet it’s even sadder to see another group of businesses replacing the local icon, especially another pharmacy that will take all their funds out of state and we need another bank like we need a hole in the head..

  18. So sad to see Robin Hood go! So many childhood memories going. Can’t believe another bank? Seriously? And another drug store? Honestly can’t they come up with something more creative? Edmonds has enogh banks and enough drug stores! I will terribly miss Robim Hood Lanes when I drive down there.

  19. Sad to see it leave. I grew up in Edmonds, and when I come back “home” I always tell my kids that is where I hung out, and learned how to bowl! Walgreens? Really? As much as I am a capitalist, at some point we must embrace the hometown guy, and buck the trend of big box stores. What’s next, Wallmart? Bracket would roll over in his grave…sad day indeed!

  20. Hi Ace and thanks for your comment, but I think you may have mischaracterized George Brackett.

    Born in 1841, young George worked as a logger in New Brunswick and coastal Maine. In the late 1860s, he moved west in search of cheap timber and growing markets. He arrived in the Pacific Northwest in 1869, and found work as a logger clearing timber from present-day Ballard and Magnolia.

    Brackett dreamed of founding a lumbering town with readily accessible timber, abundant fresh water, and safe moorage. But the coastline north of Seattle was mostly steep hills and bluffs, and thus not good prospects for what he had in mind.

    In 1870, while exploring Puget Sound by canoe, he was forced ashore by high winds. Coming onto a sandy beach at what would become today’s Brackett’s Landing park, he saw a acres of low-bank shoreline covered with timber and riddled with fresh-water streams. The water off the beach was deep enough for ships to come into a pier. He returned to Seattle to complete the Ballard logging operations, but never forgot what he’d seen.

    Two years later, he returned and paid $650 for 147 acres of beach and prime timberland. It was the first concrete step in realizing his dream. Within a few years he built a small wharf at the foot of today’s Bell Street, and soon added a sawmill and loading dock. He platted out the town, and attracted other folks to help reap the fortune to be had from Edmonds’ standing timber.

    By today’s standards, this was a rapacious bunch. Within 15 years much of what is now the Edmonds downtown area and the bowl was denuded. Brackett had made his money, and when in 1890 the Minneapolis Investment and Realty Company offered to buy a large share of his Edmonds holdings, Brackett jumped at the chance.

    It was 1890, and the town was abuzz with talk of the railroad coming, and Minneapolis Realty and Investment was hoping to make a killing. They replatted the town, and build a grand hotel (the Bishop Hotel at 2nd and Bell, now the Harbormaster condominiums). But bad economic times and the panic of 1892 hit them hard. They couldn’t keep up the payments, and Brackett foreclosed, reclaiming the land (and the improvements) and pocketing the payments made up to that time.

    So…much as I hate to say it, I think Brackett would have sold the land to Walgreen’s and smiled,,,maybe laughed…all the way to the bank.

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