Lou Campi (1959)



Bowling Hall of Fame, 1968

#52 Bowler of the 20th Century

All-American, 1956-57

Match Game Doubles champion, 1947, 1948, 1957

Winner of the PBA first tournament, 1959





18 Responses to “Lou Campi (1959)”

  1. John Soasom Says:

    I had a friend who bowled like this, but he was lefty and he finished on the left foot. His name was Mario, he was from Sicily. Maybe this is an Italian thing. Mario was pretty good, maybe 190 average, but that was pretty good in 1970.

    • J.R. Schmidt Says:

      That the same-foot finish comes from the Italian game bocce. I’ve been told that another Italian Hall-of-Famer, John Martino of Syracuse, also used this type of delivery; but I never saw Martino bowl.

  2. Pat Flynn Says:

    Wrong Foot Louie! I remember him on Championship Bowling. One year he beat everybody.

  3. J.R. Schmidt Says:

    Campi won 5 straight matches on “Championship Bowling” in 1956 at Chicago Heights. He also won something like 14 in a row on a local New York City show. Obviously, the guy liked being on TV.

  4. Jessica Collishaw Says:

    I want to thank you for this, Lou Campi is my mother’s uncle. I know so little about him and it’s hard to find information online. That side of my family is in Florida and other areas down south and I don’t have much connection from New York since many of the family members that my mother knew down south have passed away. All I know is that bowling has been a family past time for generations and a back yard bocce set is sort of a family staple (and so it doesn’t surprise me that he bowls like a bocce player). I know Uncle Lou only for his nickname “Champ” (or Uncle Champ, as my mom calls him).

    I wish he had a page on Wikipedia…. Maybe that will be a task for me. If you have any resources to share I would be really grateful and excited to see them.

    • J.R. Schmidt Says:

      As you can see from the previous comments, Lou Campi was a very famous bowler in his prime. For more info on him, you should contact the Bowling Museum at their new location in Texas–there’s a link to the website on my blogroll. The Museum also rents DVDs of the old “Championship Bowling” TV show, and they have about a dozen of Campi’s matches.

    • Peter Sterns Says:

      Jessica, When I was a teenager I bowled with Lou Jr, real nice kid, we actually went to the Campi/Tarsio lanes one time with Lou Sr. Lost touch with him but he should be about 66 yrs old I would guess

    • Karen Beam Says:

      I have bowled at Pat Tarsio Lanes in Newburgh, NY for years. It was built in 1959 by Pat Tarsio Sr. and Lou Campi. Although Pat Sr passed away last year, you could contact the lanes (they have website) and speak to his son Anthony regarding your uncle. My husband and I are opening up the pro shop and are going to put a picture of your uncle on the wall in the shop since he was one of the bowling alleys’ original owners.

    • Hot Party Entertainment Says:

      Hi Jessica (Familia), I am the Grandson of the late champion and hall of famer, LOU CAMPI. My name is Jerry D’Imperio. You can find me on Facebook. More importantly, I have created a public figure Facebook page for my beloved grandfather called… Lou Campi The Legend. It’s an open discussion forum, which shares experiences and information about one of the fiercest competitors ever known in the professional sport of bowling, still today. Please visit the Facebook page and give it a “LIKE”. I run the page (Admin) and would be more than happy to answer any questions that you may have in your comment(s). FYI: My late father, Angelo D’Imperio, drilled and fitted every piece of bowling equipment (Bowling balls) that my grandfather used. My mom was the late Julia Campi. So, as you might surmise, I’ve learned a great deal about bowling, throughout my lifetime, “first hand” and directly from the sources (Family). I still remember my grandfather teaching me how to bowl, when I was young, at Campi Tarsio Lanes in Newburgh, NY. 🙂

  5. bob Says:

    i remember lou and his great bowling during the50s.although i was a pretty decent action bowler,iwasn’t in the same league as these great bowlers.i am 71yrs old,so i was around to watch and do some bowling with the great bowlers of the 60s and 70s.

  6. Allen Kahl Says:

    To Jessica Collishaw.

    A piece of info that you might want to investigate. I do not know if Lou owned a part of the alley or just lent his name, but I bowled once in Newburgh New York at a place called Campi-Tarsio lanes in around 1958

  7. Billy Says:

    Yes, Lou Campi was partners with Pat Tarsio years ago when they opened up Campi-Tarsio lanes. The center is still around today, Newburgh NY. 12550. website is tarsiolanes.com

  8. Elaine Says:

    Love reading about my Uncle Lou. I remember my dad taking us to his lanes in Newburg, NY.for New Years Eve. We were little and so impressed that we got the Royal Treatment. He was the most gentle, kind hearted, generous, soft spoken man I have ever met. We visited him and Aunt Eva (my moms sister) many times in their home in Dumont and always enjoyed out visits with them and our cousins. Now Lou Campi Jr. is in Arizona and I miss him dearly.

  9. Frank Schmitt Says:

    If you want to see the complete, game-by-game results of that 1954 TV show in NYC where Campi took on all top competitors and won week after week, go to the Facebook page “Lou Campi The Legend” if you have access to Facebook. All of the results are listed there. He averaged 232.3 for all of those weeks and when he finally lost, it was by 3 pins (665-662) to Bill Lillard who he had beaten previously when both topped 700 (742-724). It had an East vs West format but the identity of the other East bowlers remains a mystery because they never got on the show. Campi just kept on winning! The show was sponsored by Sara Lee.

  10. Frank Schmitt Says:

    I’ve never heard of him but Lou Marks was listed as the announcer for that show.

    • J.R. Schmidt Says:

      Lou Marks was the announcer for Campi’s streak—that’s why he wrote about it. BTW, his book is lots of fun.

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