Other Sports: Feather Bowling

So, let’s just say you are stuck in Detroit. You have a little time, a car, and a friend or two. What are you going to do? I suggest you go to the Cadieux Cafe for a little feather bowling.

The Cadieux Cafe doesn’t look like much from the outside, nor much from the inside, when you first step in. It is your typical bar, with a Belgian flair to it.


But step into the back room, and you have something else entirely. Welcome to feather bowling.


OK, it probably still doesn’t look like much, but let me explain. The game is like Bocce or Curling. You stand at one end of the dirt pit (hey, that’s what it is) with your ball, which looks like a smaller curling stone without a handle and made of wood. The object is to get your ball to stop closest to the target at the other end, in the case here, a feather sticking straight up.



The person with the closest ball gets the points. You get one point for every ball closest to the feather before the other persons. For instance, this would be worth one point for the red team.


Since the yellow one is next closest, red only gets one point. Speed can kill in this game, so a steady hand is helpful. We have two basic strategies, either the finesse play, where we roll it up the side of the pit and get a swooping motion, or my preferred defense, shock and awe. Yes, it is exactly what it sound like.

Action Photos!!!


So, yeah, you can wear a hockey jersey while playing.


The house rules:


We play a kind of modified version, where we each take turns. It makes for more smack talk, and a little bit more excitement.

So, what kind of men feather bowl? Belgian men. These men:


The last guy in the bottom photo is the 2007, 2003, and 1999 Champ. Do not mess with him.

The scoreboard:

Don’t knock it til you try it. When we found out we would be in Detroit, this was the thing we looked forward to the most. And I’m here to tell you, it doesn’t disappoint. Get to the Cadieux Cafe, it’s worth it.

Map to Cadieux Cafe

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  1. Hmmm.. This game sounds fun and interesting. I would love to try this game out (if i can find a feather bowling alley nearby). IF you can provide some more information on feather bowling, I would very much appreciate it. Thanks for this.

    — stephen

  2. The Cadieux Cafe looks like a very nostalgic place. I can see people packed a long the lanes on a wintery night having a few drinks and just having a plain old good time.

    It does indeed sound like a very interesting game. I don’t get to Detroit much but the next time i go i’ll have to stop by and check it out.


  3. First rule for feather bowling is not “don’t talk about feather bowling” it’s “no high-heeled shoes.”

    But you can wear a hockey jersey, how about that.

  4. When I read the beginning of the post I was like huh? …WTF is feather bowling. But then you mentioned Boce and I felt on familiar turf again. LOL. One never stops learning. Thanks for enlightening me today with this post.

  5. There is another place to play in Mt. Clemens at Bath City Bistro. They have 3 lanes and they are carpeted. It’s still great fun!!

  6. Carpeted? That seems like blasphemy to me.

  7. Thats absolutely nuts. I’d never heard of feather bowling before but it looks like good craic

  8. That is very cool, I would love to do that, but I have no idea where I could find feather bowling near me.

  9. Wow, that’s really wild. It looks like a ton of fun.

  10. Wow that looks pretty wild !

  11. That looks like fun!

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