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Bettis is about more than just football

Football will always be Jerome Bettis' favorite sport. It's the one he has put his heart and soul into, the one that has taken him from a teen in Detroit to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio later this summer.

But when it comes to sports, he does have another love. It's bowling. Bowling was a passion for the entire Bettis family, and he was involved with that before football even came along.

Jerome Bettis hits the lanes to raise money for The Bus Stops Here Foundation.

Bettis, a lifetime 200 average bowler who once bowled a perfect 300 game, was even the first inductee into the Celebrities Bowling Hall of Fame, part of the International Bowling Hall of Fame.

So it's no wonder he had so much fun on Thursday night at his annual "Bowl with The Bus" event at Latitude 360 in the Pittsburgh area.

"Bowling has been a love of mine for years and years so I wanted to share that with fans and the community," said Bettis. "Hopefully they got out of it what I got out of it. They can then use it as a community driver, and family driver. It's a great tool to bring the family together. It doesn't matter how young or old you are, the game is for all of us. It's a great opportunity to bring your family together and have a great time.

"That is the goal, do the things you enjoy doing so you can introduce other people to it."

While the event was about having fun, bowling with and meeting fans, there was a great cause attached to it. It benefited Bettis' The Bus Stops Here Foundation, with money raised going toward programs for Pittsburgh youth including computer-engineering, asthma awareness and mentorship programs.

"I think what you enjoy about the event is the purpose," said Bettis. "That is what I want everyone to get. I want everyone to have a great time bowling with us, but I want everyone to know the reason we are here, to help raise money and benefit programs of The Bus Stops Here Foundation. It's about effecting change and empowering the youth of Pittsburgh.

"We feel like we have an obligation to serve the community. That is what we want to do. This bowling event is a great opportunity for us, one to get community interaction, because it's not just me. It's all of us lending a helping hand to make a difference. It's a chance to give everyone an opportunity to come out and support and help. If the community helps, it will make a difference."

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