Some 130 people participated in Young Leader’s Society’s United We Bowl event. (Courtesy photo)

Bowlers laced up their rentals and hit the lanes Nov. 9 during the Young Leader’s Society’s (YLS) largest ever United We Bowl to benefit United Way of Santa Barbara County’s literacy programs. 

More than 130 participants joined the 9th annual bowl-a-thon fundraiser at Zodo’s Bowling and Beyond to help raise more than $4,600. In addition to the competition, teams and individuals entered to win raffle prizes. Zodo’s donated a portion of all food and drink sales from the evening to United Way.

“This year’s United We Bowl crowd really turned it into something special,” said Steve Ortiz, president/CEO of United Way of Santa Barbara County. “We’re so grateful to everyone who helped make this so much fun and successful. And the best part is that it all goes to help young scholars.” 

United We Bowl was created to help raise funds in support of United Way literacy programs, including buying books to be donated to local schools in honor of Read Across America Day. On this day in March, YLS members will visit schools to read stories and share more about their road to success. 

YLS was formed to provide community involvement and personal development opportunities for young professionals. YLS offers its members ways to become involved with United Way and community initiatives. For more, visit

— Angel Pacheco for United Way of Santa Barbara County.