The Joy of Bocce Weekly
In This Issue: Vol. VIII, Issue 16 - June 1, 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 #16 - June 1, 2009
Publisher: Mario Pagnoni Copyright 2009
76 Emsley Terrace, Methuen, MA 01844 (vm 800-211-1202 ext 4949)

Hello again bocce friends,

Late breaking news (but not earth shattering!)...

I just decided to attend and participate in the PRV nationals at Campo di Bocce of Livermore at the end of the month. I'm on the USBF Board and have been "derelict of duty" so to speak as I haven't attended meetings. I'd love to attend, but the meetings are never in Boston, so I'll always be out of pocket for airfare, hotel, meals, car rental, etc.

But this time around things are a little different. The USBF is going to revise the Open Rules and I want to be there to "weigh in" in person. Also, the PRV tourney is singles this time around, so I figured I may as well give it a whirl.

I'll be flying to Oakland on Wednesday morning, June 24. So if any JOB Weekly readers who will be in the area want to meet and discuss any and all things bocce... well, let's hook up at the Campo di Bocce. Please REPLY. More details below...

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

Campo di Bocce of Livermore...

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

Bocce Guy headed to the nationals...

I'm headed out to play in the nationals (PRV) at Campo di Bocce of Livermore (June 24 - 28). This year the event is singles so I figured I'd give it a go. I'm especially interested in attending the USBF meeting which, among other things, will seek to revise and update the Open Rules. I've been a USBF board member for a while, but haven't attended meetings since I'm usually flat broke and reluctant to fork over the cash for airfare, hotel, meals, car rental, etc.

But, I've decided to "suck it up" as the kids say and make my voice heard loudly at the meeting and more softly (probably a whisper) on the bocce court. I've never played PRV except for a few trial matches here and there with my nose stuck in the international rule book most of the time.

I hope the referees will be patient with me as I sometimes get confused - I'm not very bright to begin with, and I am advancing in both age and senility. It's a round robin with top players going to the finals on Sunday, so I've made arrangements to fly back home on Saturday.

My friends who are more into finances than I am (by that, I mean, they actually have money) say I should seek out a personal sponsor.

"You could advertise the company's name on your shirt." That sounds cool, but I don't think bocce is quite at that level yet, although I don't see why it couldn't be in the future.

Past USBF president John Ross graciously offered to partially sponsor me under his Shady Oaks Cellars.

I may take him up on the offer. But wouldn't it be great if players from around the USA could secure sponsors to defray the cost of their trip to these competitions? I hope someday that becomes commonplace as more people play and events create more exposure for sponsors.

In the meantime, anyone out there know of a big outfit who would have a budget for sponsoring such an endeavor? I can't guarantee I'd win a match or even score a couple points, but I'd definitely write a great piece about the experience and complement it with some good action photos. All of this would advance the cause of bocce by my publishing this experience on-line and in print. Yikes! I think I may have even convinced myself!

Please REPLY with ideas or suggestions...

Also, I'l thinking this would be a great time for me to interview players from around the USA. I might meet some folks who have been regular readers of the Joy of Bocce Weekly and get some new photos for the next edition of the Joy of Bocce. Please, if you are going to be in the neighborhood, seek me out and say hello. If you have some excellent high resolution photos for the new edition of the book, bring them along too.

Hope to see you at the Campo di Bocce of Livermore, June 24 - 28, 2009.


Drop in Bocce at Zorvino Vineyards

It looks like the bocce planned at the Vineyards might be of the "drop in" format rather than a league. Anyone within driving distance of Sandown's Zorvino Vineyards will be happy to hear that we will be running Tuesday nights throughout the summer.

Email with your interest.

We begin play at 6:00 PM. Come play on the courts, get a little bocce instruction, then play some informal bocce. REPLY with your interest or call 978-686-8679.


George Vierra of St. Helena Bocce asks...

"How are bocce balls cleaned? Are they buffed or waxed?"

{Well, I guess it depends on where they've been used...on sand, clay, stone dust, etc. Some people just used plain soap and water to clean off well used bocce balls. Some outfits sell polish made especially for bocce balls and bowling balls. Once even the best manufactured balls have been used for a while on stone dust, decomposed granite type surfaces, they don't seem to ever fully recover their original luster. Does any reader have a good answer to this question? Please REPLY.}

I know that this outfit (link below) offers a bocce ball polish...



Joe Nicotera of Peabody, Mass. writes...

"Thank you so much for sending me my copy of the Joy of Bocce so quickly, I received it yesterday and I'm already 3/4 of the way through it.

I am actually in the process of having my backyard excavated as part of a two-year-long renovation of my home. As such, I have decided to construct a bocce court along one wall. I have memories of playing as a child and want to bring the sport to the current generation of my family. I am full-blooded Italian with a mix of north and south, and am actually in the process of inheriting my great-grandfather Agazio Nicotera's Italian citizenship.

You can see a picture of my back yard plan by clicking on this link or pasting it into a browser.

Originally the court was going to be 10x60 but after reading your book I am going to see if I have the space to expand it a bit."


Jeremy Calhoon sends a Microsoft Word file for his June 13th PRV Tournament... I've posted it here...


Jeff Thompson sends this...

"Mia Maria's 4th Annual Bocce Festival will be held on August 15, 2009 from 10 AM to 6 PM at Frontier Park's Indian Village in Cheyenne, WY. 2 player teams, food and beverage will be available. For information you may contact Jeff or Nola Thompson at 307-638-6756.

{This is good news - we don't hear much about bocce in Wyoming. The more growth of the sport in more areas of the country the better!}


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 #27 - July 25, 2005

George Farruggio of Punta Gorda, FL asks about swingboards...

"I can't seem to find any detailed drawings on how to build a swing board at each end of the court. Are there many different kinds of swing boards? Hope someone out there can shed some light on the subject. Very little talk about swing boards. This is a good subject for all your bocce players. And remember the name of the game is BOCCE. Hope someone will talk about why a swing board is very necessary. And also why a swing board is used."

{Swingboards are used to ensure that balls don't bounce back off the endboards and come into play for a point or disturb the positions of already played balls. The movement around the country with Open Rules is to rule dead any ball that strikes the backboard without first hitting another ball. So, we don't want a dead ball caroming off the back and disturbing previously played balls. Can any readers add to this discussion?}



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: . }


SANTA ROSA BOCCE LEAGUE officers Robert Battaile, President and League Organizer, Karl Adelman, Vice President, Michelle Jensen, Secretary send this to all Bocce Movers and Shakers...

"We are planning to put together a Regional Exhibition Match on either Saturday, July 11 or Sunday July 12.

As most of you know, this is the first year of the Santa Rosa Bocce League and we have put together an enthusiastic group of eight teams playing on Monday and Wednesday nights in Juilliard Park.

On April 20, the Mayor proclaimed 'Bocce Week' in Santa Rosa. On Wednesday May 27th, we will be talking to the Santa Rosa Board of County Services about building bocce courts in Doyle Park. Our momentum is building as we now have 100 members and are planning for our Fall League to start in mid-August.

Thus, we'd love to have teams from the area join us for an afternoon of spirited competition. There's no entry fees. Prizes will be few but bragging rights are assured.
Minimum team size is four people, with two playing at each end. Larger teams are encouraged with players rotating throughout.

Please let me know if you can join us and which day would be better for your schedule.

Here's our dream-teams lineup:

1) Santa Rosa Bocce League - winning team from the Spring League

2) Santa Rosa All-Stars - (a team we'll be putting together with various contests/competitions)

3) St. Helena team or group - Charlotte Lord

4) San Rafael team or group - Jerry South

5) Yountville Team or group - Richard Gambatese

6) Sonoma Group - Ken McTaggart

7) Sacramento team or group - Vern Cooper

8) Martinez team or group - Gene Rittburg

Check out and contact them via the web site.


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."

Glo Bocce Glo Boules by Playaboule...

Photos of the week
This week's photos first appeared in Volume II, Issue 13 - March 31, 2003. Those were the days when I left the photos up for a week, then replaced them with the current week's pictures. I've been reposting some of these and making them a permanent part of the Joy of Bocce web site. These are posted under Bocce Tidbits.

Reprinted from Vol. II, Issue 13, March 31, 2003...

Thanks to all who answered last week’s request for suggestions for playing bocce with young children. Most cautioned us to watch out for errant tosses and for bocce balls dropped on tiny toes. Many recommended using smaller, lighter balls that could be more easily managed by little hands. All of this was good advice.

Still, there was the question of how we would actually introduce bocce to the tykes. After much thought we decided to model the same successful format we used previously with middle school kids (see Volume II, Issue 8 - February 24, 2003 - archived at's Back Issues link).

First, I enlisted the help of many adults (bocce players, day care providers, parents), impressing upon them the need for “crowd control.” The event was well publicized and about 30 children (mostly 3- to 5-year-olds) showed up at Methuen’s Bridgewalk Family Resource Center. Dolli Pariseau oversees the center which offers a variety of free children's programs and parenting services.

We brought the children into the building’s old gymnasium and sat them down for a brief talk about the origins of bocce and an even briefer demonstration of how to play. We repeated several times the admonition to “Roll the balls very GENTLY.”

Then, before sending the preschoolers off to experience the joy of bocce, we set the tone with some mood music (Frank Cappelli’s Bocci Ball). If you are unfamiliar with Cappelli’s wonderful melodies, you are in for a treat. Contact him at F.E. Cappelli Publishing Co., 717 North Meadowcroft Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15216.

We set up 3 sections of carpet on the gym floor and sent the three-, four-, and five-year-olds off to different areas. The older children played bocce games with regulation bocce balls and two-by-fours marking the court boundaries. Several of our Monday morning bocce players did a great job of organizing the games and instructing the kids.

When the children tried to pick up two bocce balls at once, they dropped one or the other or both. So, we learned to roll the balls GENTLY, and ONE AT A TIME, please!

The younger tykes just practiced rolling balls. They used small, brightly colored plastic balls or special water filled bocce balls. It wasn’t certain that they understood the object of the game, but it was infinitely clear that they were having a blast!

The event lasted just a little over an hour, and before they left, many of the adults asked for more information about the game. So, we not only survived a close encounter with tots armed with bocce balls, we succeeded in spreading the word about the game we love - a game that many call the "best kept secret in sports."

View this week's photos

Bocce product of the week
Design 2005 from Playaboule

So much for the standard red and green sets of bocce. View the many color options for this high end, precision quality bocce set.

Ball Size: 107 mm dia and 920 gm weight.

The official size and weight for US and international tournament play.

Set of 4 balls with a 40mm pallina.

This ball is made with a unique core material that the outer skin is molded to.

Click to view these high end bocce offered by Playaboule...

Non bocce product of the week

Shop Today!

Shop Today!

Shop Today!

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.


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


June 12, 2009 - Pennsylvania - Koppel. IMBS - 2-player teams. Contact 724-847-4488.

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


June 19, 2009 - Pennsylvania - Beaver Falls. Fathers' Day - 4-player teams. Contact 724-843-9854.


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.


June 26, 2009 - Pennsylvania - Ellwood City. 2-player teams. Contact Mike Harper @ 724-494-6735.


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


July 10, 2009. Pennsylvania - Koppel. 4-player teams. Contact 724-847-4488.


July 10, 2009 - Pennsylvania - Farrell. Farrell Italian Home. 4-player teams. Contact 724-346-6931.


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


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


July 17, 2009 - Ohio - Cleveland. Little Italy Bocce Cup. 4-player teams. Contact Michael Cipullo @ 216) 513-4459.


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.


July 25, 2009 - Ohio - Youngstown. 4-player teams. Contact Carmine @ 330-501-3958.


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


August 7, 2009. Pennsylvania - Koppell. Co-ed tourney. Contact 724-847-4488.


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


August 14, 2009 - Pennsylvania - New Galilee. 4-player teams. Contact Jessie Pomerico @ 724-622-4792.


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


August 15, 2009 - Wyoming - Cheyenne. Mia Maria's 4th Annual Bocce Festival. 10 AM to 6 PM at Frontier Park's Indian Village. 2 player teams, food and beverages available. Contact Jeff or Nola Thompson at 307-638-6756.


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


August 28 - 30, 2009 - Ohio - Wickliffe. WICKLIFFE ITALIAN-AMERICAN CLUB. 26th annual CLEVELAND CHALLENGE CUP OF BOCCE sponsored by Pat O'Brien Chevrolet. $5000 first prize, $15,000 in total prize money – GUARANTEED. $150 per team entry. Trophy’s and medals for Champion and second place finishers and tournament t-shirts for all participants. Four person teams (plus one sub) Contact Gino Latessa ( @ 216-789-6393 for more info. Applications and info online @


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.


October 24, 2009 - California - Stockton I.A.C. RAFFA - 3 players. Western Sector Championship. Contact Romano Lotti @ 209-951-8256.


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.

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