The Joy of Bocce Weekly
In This Issue: Vol. VIII, Issue 11 - March 30, 2009 
•   Notes from the publisher
•   Bocce product of the week
•   Bocce news & readers' feedback
•   Non bocce product of the week
•   Photos of the week
•   Tournament update
Notes from the publisher
The weekly Ezine for bocce aficionados everywhere
Volume 8, Issue #11 - March 30, 2009
Publisher: Mario Pagnoni Copyright 2008
76 Emsley Terrace, Methuen, MA 01844 (vm 800-211-1202 ext 4949)

Greetings bocce lovers wherever you are...

My apologies if you have emailed a question or comment and I have not responded. I've gotten to the point that I just can't keep up. My wife says I've "created a monster" since the ezine has grown so popular and I refuse to use impersonal auto-responders. So, it may take a while, but I'll get back to you. Thanks for keeping me in the bocce loop.

My group is again hosting the bocce segment of the Mass. Senior Games on May 16, 2009. The event doubles as our non-profit group's annual fund-raiser. Let me know if you are interested in placing an ad in our program book (which we will also post in the ezine at no extra charge). I'll send you the details via "snail mail".

We need to start a serious effort to get bocce recognized as a national event in the Senior Olympics and I am asking you to send an email supporting this effort. The details are listed below under "Bocce news".

Thanks for helping us make this important step for the growth of the game in America.

Stay close and always be up front,
Mario Pagnoni (The Bocce Guy)

Courts in Fearrington Village, NC...

Bocce news & readers' feedback
{Publisher's comments in brackets...}

BOCCE USA sends news...

Photo of League Champions: (left to right) Bill Lipscomb, Josephine Calcaterra, Nadine Battioli, Gordon Richey of The 'H' Group, Diane Hamann and team captain, John Battioli. {Click the photo for a better view.}

Bocce USA League Awards

"And the Winner Is......"

The ballots have been cast....the votes are in....and the winners are decided.

Monday night found nearly 80 Bocce players, their guests and a few sponsors gathered in the dining room of the West Frankfort Senior Center for a great meal, good fellowship and, Oh Yes!, the presentation of awards from the 2008-09 Monday night league play.

Director, Bill Lipscomb of Benton, opened the evening's festivities by playing the "call to post" and the National Anthem. A blessing for the food was offered by Bocce player, Steve Walters before the group was directed to the buffet.

Following the meal, Lipscomb began the awards presentation with acknowledgements to several players who have been instrumental in assisting him with the week to week chores necessary to maintain the courts and keep play running smoothly at the Bob Whitlow Memorial Bocce courts in West Frankfort. This included Board Members (other than Lipscomb) Jay Bussler, Joyce Fogleman and Mary Lynn Whitlow all of WF.

Then, what everyone was waiting for....... who will be presented with the prestigious awards? Those awards and their well deserved winners are as follows;

Rookie of the Year: Carl Metheney of WF

Most Improved Female: Jan Tripp of DeSoto

Most Improved Male: Steve Walters of WF

Female "Hitter": Sally Neimeyer of Benton

Male "Hitter": Bill Lipscomb of Benton

Male "Pointer": John Holland of DeSoto

Female Pointer: Nadine Battioli of Herrin

Sportsmanship Award: Orvel Edwards of Ewing

Sub of the Year: Jon Maleski of WF

Bob Whitlow Memorial Award: Orvel Edwards

First Place in the League went to The 'H' Group (formerly Franklin-Williamson Human Services) team which consisted of Diane Hamann, Josephine Calcaterra, John and Nadine Battioli all of Herrin (pictured).

Second Place award was won by Stotlar Herrin Lumber consisting of John and Yvonne Holland and Brenda Barney all of DeSoto and Frank Mochino of Mulkeytown.

Third Place was won by the Boneyard Boccie Club of Benton and consisted of Bill Lipscomb and Pat Hallada of Benton, Orvel Edwards of Ewing and Herschel Gregge of WF.

Topping the evening off with a little entertainment in the form of some wonderful piano music was Ardell Tripp of DeSoto. The music even inspired some "sing-along" starring a number of Bocce players.

Play continues on Tuesday evenings, FREE, at the Bocce courts located in the northeast wing of the New Beginnings Church on E. Sixth in WF.


The eloquent Luca Fontana of Stockton, California makes a sincere and compelling argument...

"Last week, our current USBF President, Mr. Danny Passaglia wrote a very poignant appeal to all Bocce players to become members of the USBF for many different reasons and advantages. The immediate benefit would be to show that Bocce in the US is no longer an Italian game played by old men with a cigar and a glass of wine, but it has evolved into a very organized and active reality, ready to reach the next level of recognition and competition.

Bocce can still be the wonderful Sunday afternoon game played with the grandchildren in Nonno's backyard, however, it can also inspire young players to learn the game, practice hard and participate in National and World events previously unknown, or deemed out of reach.

As your great publication already reported, four very young ladies from Pleasanton/Livermore will be participating at the World Volo Championship this month in Italy. Navina Bernardi, the youngest, is only 14 years old. If this does not prove a point, I don't know what would. These girls come from a very different socio-economical and ethnic background, yet have two great things in common: friendship and bocce.

Only a couple of years ago they would never have dreamed possible to embark on such an adventure, but with their hard work and the guidance of their coach, Mr. Ben Musolf, they'll be on the same courts as the best players in the world. What does that have to do with purchasing a USBF membership card? In order to develop into a true sport and possible Olympic discipline (don't laugh, just think curling, archery and trap shooting). Bocce players must all be united under the same umbrella, playing with the same rules and court specifications, just like other sports. If every active bocce player in the US would be a USBF member, we would easily rival the membership contingent of countries at the forefront of the game such as Italy, China and Switzerland. Prominent national corporations would be much more interested in sponsoring bocce events because of the increased exposure... you can easily see where I am going.

Mario, your efforts to promote Bocce and the great forum that you have made available to all of us are to be commended. If people would listen and embrace what you and Mr. Passaglia are trying to convey, the future of US Bocce will be extremely bright and some tots in Nonno's backyard might some day be playing in the World Championship, and winning it...

And it may just be one of your children or grandchildren!"


Ace bocce reporter Elizabeth Jade Fontana gives us a play-by-play description of recent action in Bavagna...

{And it looks like the women are giving an excellent effort against some extremely strong competition.}

"The USA played this morning at 8:30 against Canada which is the strongest team in their division. Colleen, Maria Narayan, and Rena Harrell played the triples against Canada' s very experienced players who have played many times internationally. Their triples team consisted of Maria Secondi, Concetta Rosauri, and Cecilia Fazioli.

Canada took an early lead 8-2 with their very skillful pointing and consistent shooting. At that point Debbie O'Sullivan was brought in to substitute for Rena. It slowed down the momentum a little, but not enough. Canada was able to make 4 points in one frame making the score 14-6. 15-6 was the end score of the triples.

Then in the Individuals that I was unable to watch, Cecilia played against Debbie. That ended with the same score 15-6 in favor of Canada.

In the doubles Maria N. and Rena played against Maria S. and Concetta. They put up a good battle with Maria N. making some volo and raffa shots. The score started out 5-0 in favor of Canada, but after a pep talk from John Ross, the USA women were able to pick up their game 5-5. Concetta was pretty consistent with her volo and raffa. It was a pretty tight game with only a 2 point difference until the last frame ending 15-11 in Canada's favor.

Tomorrow morning USA will be playing against Cile at the Foligno bocciodromo which is about 25 minutes away from the hotel where we are staying. Then USA will have to return back to the Foligno club in the evening after dinner 8:30pm to play against Russia, which Danny Passaglia said they may give the USA a challenge. Russia beat Chile in 2 out of the 3 matches this morning. Canada will be playing against Germany. The USA women cannot lose to another country or they won't be able to make it into the semi-final.

Italy has shown again their dominance in this sport, handily dispatching France 15-0, 15-3, 15-0. Then against Turkey 15-2, 15-5, 15-3. Elisa Luccarini easily volo-ed in the zone."


The USBF's Peter Rabito sends this...

"If you want to watch any of the World's Woman's Bocce Championships from Bavagna - please check out this link: "


Blast from the past...

It's fun to look at back issues to see where we were and where we might be headed.

Volume #4, Issue #20 - May 20, 2005

The Yahoo group Bocce Anonymous featured an interesting discussion of team names. It was spawned by…

“We're new to bocce and need a funny team name. Can't think of anything. Any suggestions?”

One response…

“I play in a huge beach tournament each year in Del Mar, CA and there’s nothing better than the announcer calling over the loudspeaker the team court assignments. There's always a pretty good laugh from the crowd when he says ‘Are My Balls Touching report to court 28.’ “

Other suggestions…

Bocce Nuts
Bocce Novices
Bocce Buddies
Shameless Ball Handlers
Botched Operation

The best on-line advice was this…

“Look at where you are located (your city, state, or region may give you ideas). What is a major draw or landmark in your area? St. Louis, just 100 miles from us, might provoke ‘Arch Rivals’ or ‘The Gateway Gang.’ A team located near one of the famous tunnels in NYC, might choose ‘The Tunnel Rats.’ Look at the age of your team. A senior citizens team, especially a men's team, might go with ‘Old Balls.’ Or if your team shares a common occupation or hobby, that might play into your name. If I had a team with fellow woodworkers, we might call it the ‘Sawdusters’ or the ‘Woodshavers.’ “

Our league here in Massachusetts has had…

Pallino Poppers
Bocce Bandits
Bocce Beat Alls
High Rollers
Royal Flush Stables (captain is a race horse aficionado)
Diamonds in the Rough (captain is a jeweler)

But, my favorite all-time name for a bocce team has to be…

Drinking Team With A Bocce Problem


Auburn (Washington) Bocce Club sends a PRESS RELEASE...

Auburn Bocce Club Rolls Into Cyberspace!

The Auburn Bocce Club is pleased to announce its new Internet Web site which promotes the people, activities and the spirit that epitomize the game of bocce in Auburn. The Web site went online on March 1, 2009, and can be found by typing in your Internet browser.

On the Web site, both the interested Web surfer and veteran bocce player can experience the importance, popularity and enthusiasm about the game of bocce in Auburn and the greater Puget Sound community. A visitor to the Auburn Bocce Club’s Web site will be able to:

Read about the club’s mission and community activities

Learn about the history and rules of bocce

Find out where and when the club meets, plays and gives lessons

Learn about other bocce events in the greater Puget Sound area

Get the latest bocce news (club members get access to special club news and promotions)

Browse to links to other great bocce-related Web sites

Contact the club’s officers and instructor for more info about bocce

Fill out an online membership form to join the club

Besides implementing its new Web site, the Auburn Bocce Club has implemented two more Internet-based means for the greater Puget Sound community:

1. The club has created a group on the popular Internet social networking site Facebook called “Puget Sound Bocce”. Internet users may join Facebook for free and then request to join the group. Once in the Puget Sound Bocce group, users may join in discussions, or post content related to bocce in text, picture, audio, video and hyperlinks to bocce-related Web sites. The Auburn Bocce Club will administer this Facebook group and promote it on its Web site.

2. The club has also created a user on the Twitter message service called “PugetSoundBocce”. Internet users may join Twitter for free and can then “follow” the message feed related to Puget Sound Bocce on their computer, their mobile phone or other Internet device. Twitter is planned for live use involving the club’s participation at future Puget Sound bocce events, and is being considered to provide announcements and reminders of area bocce or club events.

The Auburn Bocce Club encourages all of its members, as well its current and future bocce colleagues, to use and promote the club’s new Web site, Facebook group and Twitter feed, and provide feedback on how they can be improved. The club also encourages our current and future bocce colleagues in the Puget Sound community to provide links to their club or team Web pages to show their spirit!

Point of contact: Peter Di Turi, Webmaster, Auburn Bocce Club, 253.939.4108,


Tournament news from Ben Musolf and the Campo di Bocce...

The events this year for the United States Bocce Federation Championships are as follows:

1. Men's Singles
2. Women's Singles
3. Under 21 Singles (As long as the entrant turns 21 in 2009 he is eligible)
4. Precision Shooting and Lagging Competition

There will also be an Open Invitational hosted by Campo di Bocce prior to the National Championships. There will be an A and B division, some rules and stipulations will apply, please see entry form for details.

Contact - 408-857-0074



A message from USBF President Danny Passaglia...

"As the governing body for Bocce in America, the USBF is responsible for promoting, teaching, and also sending players to represent the USA in International and World events. Founded more than 30 years ago by an Italian tailor in Colorado, Mr. Chris Gerrardo, the Federation has established a solid support group throughout the USA.

As a not for profit organization, the USBF is recognized by the AAU, FIB, CBI and several Special Olympic organizations. Membership accounts for almost 60% of our funds and each year the USBF sanctions a National Tournament which is often used to select the players or Teams that will represent the USA abroad. It is through participation in the USBF that we are able to continue to support local area youth groups, senior citizen facilities and almost anywhere Bocce is played. One of our Honorary Directors is Mr. Steve Mariucci 'Coach'. Mr. Mariucci has been extremely helpful in promoting Bocce and even conducts an Annual Charity Tournament along with Mr. John Madden.

Membership is tax deductible and the USBF is currently working on many additional benefits for the card members in the immediate future. I hope that you will consider being part of our organization and fill out the application by clicking the link below."

{We should all be card carrying members. Every club should be affiliated. For the sport to gain the attention it needs we need to boast of many thousands of members. Download a USBF Membership Application here: . }


We need to get Open Rules bocce into the Senior Olympics. This would go a long way to get increased exposure nationwide.

If you want to help lobby for this, send an email supporting bocce as an event at the National Senior Games.

Send it to:

Philip Godfrey, President and CEO

Send a cc to Mark Zeug, NSGA Chairman

2010 is a qualifying year for the National Games which are scheduled for Houston, TX in 2011 (you qualify one year and represent your state the following year). This from the Senior Games 2011 web site:

"Competitive events will include: archery, badminton, basketball, bowling, cycling, golf, horseshoes, race walk, racquetball, road race, shuffleboard, softball, swimming, table tennis, tennis, track and field, triathlon and volleyball. In addition, there is the possibility of adding additional sports for 2011."


Don't forget Frank Valanzola's 3rd Annual New Jersey Bocce Invitational benefiting Operation Shoebox New Jersey and Boys & Girls Clubs.
Click here to view a pdf file.


Joy of Bocce 3rd Edition - Photos Needed

I’ve decided to do a third edition, re-doing almost all the photographs. I’ve got a great new digital camera and can re-take many of the shots. In addition, I’m asking readers to submit new pics – at least 300 dpi is the goal. I'm asking you and my friends like court builders David Brewer, Mike Grasser, and Tom McNutt to re-submit photos of their best courts. The new edition will probably not be much different in terms of text (although I may tighten it a bit – friends of mine say to me…”Leave it to you to write a book this thick on bocce”).

I'll need your help with this effort. Please submit high quality (300 dpi) pics (and permission to reprint) of bocce in your neck of the woods. This project will be my main focus for 2009. Please help.

Imported bocce balls (from Italy, where else?) by Perfetta...

Photos of the week
This week's photos come courtesy of Guy DeSantis who sends pictures from his recent Winter Bocce Open. they are now a permanent part of The Joy of Bocce web site under Bocce Tidbits.

{A more detailed explanation of the event was printed a couple weeks ago...Vol. VIII #8 - March 2, 2009 - Yonkers Bocce - }

PIEzano's Pizza & Pasta of Yonkers and the Yonkers/Mount Vernon Bocce Club hosted the Winter Bocce Open, one of the first United States Bocce Federation-sanctioned tournaments in southern New York.

DeSantis mentioned that several of the young players and their friends expressed interest in weekly play, as well as training for future open and international tournaments. Based on the success of the tournament, DeSantis plans to host four a year, with the next slated for this spring.

The sport of Bocce has undergone a surge in popularity over the last decade which can be attributed to an influx of participation by younger generations. No longer is it considered an "old timers" game as the skills set of the youth movement is rising. The United States Bocce Federation - the governing body for the sport of bocce in America is taping into this "resource". We are looking to develop world class athletes to compete with international bocce power-houses such as Italy, Brazil, Sweden and many other countries.

{Please follow Guy's lead and send photos of bocce in your area.}

View this week's photos

Bocce product of the week
Bocce Court Maintenance Tools

I’ve seen all kinds of home-made court maintenance brushes and scrapers. Two things have always struck me about them. 1 – they look like they are home-made and 2 – they tend to be HEAVY.

7' Drag Brush

Manufactured by Lee Tennis (makers of the Har-Tru surface material), this court maintenance tool created for tennis courts works exceptionally well for bocce courts. The 7-foot drag brush is light-weight and, even if you have a 13- or 14-foot wide court, you can smooth it over with just two passes. This is quick enough to do between games without keeping players waiting very long.

Bristles are 4 ½ inches of synthetic fibers and the strong but light-weight frame is aluminum. Retails for $169.95 plus shipping.


This strangely named 30” wide device is actually two implements in one. It is an all-aluminum combination tool for scarifying, leveling, and removing loose court material.

Strong and sturdy, the tool is light enough to handle with ease and is excellent for spreading new material during top-dressing. The concave shape of the 30” wide blade allows the tool to “float” along the surface without digging in. Use the serrated edge to scrape material from high spots, then flip the tool over to rake and smooth that spot and drag the loose material to fill in a lower point. Retails for $63.95 plus shipping.

Besides a heavy roller, the lute/scarifier and 7-foot drag brush should be all the maintenance tools a bocce court owner needs.

Click to go to merchandise order...then scroll to bottom of page.

Non bocce product of the week

Shop Today!

Shop Today!

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Tournament update
{chronological order}


Don't let the West Coast players hog all the space!


Please - anyone running a tournament - do me a favor - put a notice near your tourney bracket board informing players that they can go to and "opt in" for my FREE Ezine on bocce. Click the logo to the right to opt in if you do not already receive this ezine every Monday.


Please consider designating someone as "official event photographer" and directing that person to send snapshots for us to reproduce as photos of the week. Our readers love seeing bocce action from around the continent.


March 30 - April 5, 2009. Italy - Bavena. Women's Raffa World Championship. Details TBA.


April 4, 2009 - California - Stockton, Waterloo. OPEN - 4 Players. At least two women players. Contact David Canclini @ 209-957-3314.


April 18, 2009 - California - Los Gatos. OPEN - 4 Players. Contact Bill Schlaefer @ 408-379-9409.


April 25, 2009 - Washington - Bellingham. The 7th Annual Bellingham Bay Bocce Tournament. Proceeds benefit the Bellingham Food Bank. Contact Tom McNutt @ .


May 2, 2009 - California - San Mateo (P.I.A.S.C.). RAFFA - 3 players. Contact Adriano Undorte @ 650-591-3318.


May 2, 2009 - California - San Mateo (P.I.A.S.C.). OPEN -4 women players. Contact Rose Viscuso @ 650-349-7732.


May 9, 2009 - California - Sacramento (East Portal). RAFFA - 3 players. Contact Vern Cooper @ 916-961-2404.


May 16, 2009 - New Hampshire - Hampstead. Massachusetts Senior Games. Triples - 3 players per team, men, women, or mixed play in one division. All participants must be at least 50 years of age. Contact or 978-686-8679.


May 16, 2009 - California - Fairfield. OPEN - 4 women players. Contact Vergie Trammell @ 707-425-5301.


May 22, 2009 - Illinois - Herrin. HerrinFesta Italiana Corporate Bocce Tournament. More info at & .


May 23, 2009 - California - Carmel Valley A. C. OPEN - 4 players. Contact Giovanni Napoli @ 831-521-5092.


May 23, 2009 - Illinois - Herrin. HerrinFesta Italiana Adult/Child Tournament. More info at & .


May 24, 2009 - Illinois - Herrin. HerrinFesta Italiana International Tournament. More info at .


May 30, 2009 - California - I.A.C.C. - South City. RAFFA -2 women players. Contact Alvaro Bettucchi @ 650-871-9278.


May 31, 2009 - WESTERN SECTOR MEETING - I.A.C. - Stockton. Contact Vern Cooper @ 916-961-2404.


June 6, 2009 - California - Stockton I.A.C. RAFFA - 3 players. Western Sector Championship. Contact Romano Lotti @ 209-951-8256.


June 7, 2009 - California - Sutter Creek. I.B.S. OPEN - 4 players. At least one woman. Contact Rick Wagstaff @ 209-296-6151.


June 13, 2009 - California - Martinez. RAFFA - 2 players. Contact Jeremy Calhoun @ 510-450-2545.


June 20, 2009 - New Jersey - Franklin Twp. 3rd Annual Bocce Invitational at Colonial Park. Proceeds will support Operation Shoebox New Jersey and Boys & Girls Clubs of New Jersey. View pdf here:


June 20, 2009. California - South City. I.A.C.C. OPEN - 2 men and 2 women players. Contact Rudy Bertolozzi @ 650-583-9936.


June 22 - 24, 2009 - California - Campo di Bocce Livermore. Open Invitational Tournament. Contact Ben Musolf @ or 408-857-0074.


June 22 - 27, 2009. California - Campo di Bocce Livermore. US NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP. Contact Ben Musolf @ 408-857-0074.


July 4, 2009 - California - Martinez. OPEN - 2 players. Contact Jeremy Calhoun @ 510-450-2545.


July 11, 2009 - California - San Rafael - Marin. OPEN - 2 men players. Contact Diana Pelligrini @ 415-485-5583.


July 11, 2009 - California - Auburn Bocce Club. OPEN - 4 players. Contact Salvatore Gascon @ 253-939-3502.


July 18, 2009 - California - Fairfield. OPEN - 4 players. John Magnetti Memorial Tourney. Contact Vergie Trammell @ 707-425-5301.


July 25, 2009 - California - Campo di Bocce Los Gatos. RAFFA - 1 man and 1 woman. Contact John Ross @ 408- 354-0625.


August 1, 2009 - California - San Rafael -Marin. OPEN - 4 players. Western Sector Championships. Contact Diana Pelligrini @ 415-485-5583.


August 8, 2009 - California - San Rafael - Marin. OPEN - 2 women players. Contact Diana Pelligrini @ 415-485-5583.


August 15, 2009 - California - I.A.C.C. South City OPEN - 4 womwn players. Contact Rose Viscuso @ 650-349-7732.


August 22, 2009 - California - Los Gatos - Campo di Bocce. RAFFA - 3 players. Contact Bill Schlaefer @ 408- 379-9409.


August 29, 2009 - California - Sacramento - East Portal. OPEN - 4 players. Contact Vern Cooper @ 916-961-2404.


September 12, 2009 - California - I.A.C.C. - South City. RAFFA - 3 PLAYERS. 24th Ital.-Amer. Games. Contact Alvaro Bettucchi @ 650-871-9278.


September 19, 2009 - California - I.A.C. - Stockton. RAFFA - 1 MAN AND 1 WOMAN. Contact Romano Lotti @ 209-951-8256.


September 20, 2009 - California - P.I.A.S.C. San Mateo
OPEN - 4 PLAYERS. At least one woman. Contact Rose Viscuso @ 650-349-7732.


September 26, 2009 - California - I.B.S. - Sutter Creek. OPEN - 4 PLAYERS. Gold Country Classic. Contact Rick Wagstaff @ 209-296-6151.


October 3, 2009 - California - Stockton - Waterloo. OPEN - 4 PLAYERS. Contact David Canclini @ 209-957-3314.


October 4, 2009 - California - South City I.A.C.C. VOLO - 2 PLAYERS. Contact Ale Bettucchi @ 650-697-7702.


October 10, 2009 - California - San Rafael - Marin. OPEN - 4 PLAYERS. Contact Diana Pelligrini @ 415-485-5583.


October 17, 2009 - California - Sacramento - East Portal. RAFFA - 3 PLAYERS. Contact Vern Cooper @ 916-961-2404.


November 12-14, 2009. Nevada - Reno. Peppermill Casino. OPEN - 4 players. Contact Dana Shores @ 800-648-6992.


December 5, 2009 - California - Stockton. I. A. C. OPEN – 4 PLAYERS. At least two women players. Contact Romano Lotti @ 209-951-8256.

Joy of bocce t-shirts, mugs, buttons, magnets, etc.

Merchandise still available at

Check out the first-rate equipment we offer. The finest measuring devices for bocce (made in UK by Prohawk for lawn bowling, petanque, and bocce) - the finest bocce balls in the world (made in Italy by Perfetta) and the number one selling instructional book on bocce in America - Check them out.
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