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Bowling buddies roll out to Deer Park

Patrick Donoghue, 12, and Isaac Vingan, 16, look

Patrick Donoghue, 12, and Isaac Vingan, 16, look at an iTouch in between turns at the Deer Park Bowl Sunday afternoon. The Dix Hills duo took part in the Lubavitch Chai Center’s first Bowling Buddies event. (Feb. 6, 2011) Photo Credit: Kevin Traynor

Patrick Donoghue played with his iTouch between turns at the Deer Park Bowl Sunday afternoon.

But when it was the 12-year-old boy’s turn to bowl, he wasn’t alone. Isaac Vingan, 16, helped Donoghue who has autism try to master his technique.

“Every time it seems to keep going left,” said Vingan.

The Dix Hills duo took part in the Lubavitch Chai Center’s first Bowling Buddies event.

Since the advent of the Ariella Weiss Friendship Circle at the Chai Center in 2005, teens have been paired with children who have special needs to forge social relationships.

Vingan and Donoghue have been paired together for the past six months.

Initially, Vingan’s sister had been Donoghue’s buddy, but he took over after she left for college. The familiarity with the family made it an easy transition for both.

Teen buddies often spend an hour per week at their new friend’s home aside from events like Bowling Buddies.

“We play Wii, and do puzzles a lot,” said Vingan, who’s been with the Chai Center since age 13.  As part of his Mitzvah project, Vingan began working with the Friendship Circle at the center in Dix Hills.

Caption: Patrick Donoghue, 12, and Isaac Vingan, 16, look at an iTouch in between turns Sunday afternoon at Deer Park Bowl. (Feb. 6, 2011)

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