The Joy of Bocce Weekly
In This Issue: Vol. VIII, Issue 2 - January 12, 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 #2 - January 12, 2009
Publisher: Mario Pagnoni Copyright 2008
76 Emsley Terrace, Methuen, MA 01844 (vm 800-211-1202 ext 4949)

Hi again bocce gang,

Here we go - cranking up for year number EIGHT for The Joy of Bocce Weekly.

This year I need to focus my attention and efforts to completing a new edition of my book (The Joy of Bocce) (this one with high resolution photos) and getting it to press by the Fall. Also, I want to get more outlets for book sales. Sure, you can find it in book stores, but I want to get it on the shelf and on line at other places that retail gift items. Got any suggestions? The more people with a Joy of Bocce copy in their personal library the better chance for the sport to hit the mainstream. And we're getting closer each year!

Best wishes for a healthy and prosperous 2009...

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

Bocce in Lynnfield, Massachusetts...

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

Ben Musolf sends news of Campo di Bocce's annual Maureen Albanese Valentine Day Tournament. The event will be at the Los Gatos Campo di Bocce on February 14, 2009. Two men and two women must make up each 4-player team.

$30 per player entry fee includes continental breakfast and lunch. For more info or to register contact .


Dan Piselli sends a YouTube link to the CBS spot on Bocce mentioned in recent issues.


Ken and Candice Nagel of Phoenix, Arizona write...

"Just built a court at our restaurant in Phoenix, Arizona and want to make sure we have all the trimmings that go with a good court. Tom from Boccemon said you may have a lead on a fanny
we can have our guests kiss. Plaque or sculpture, whatever."

{Great! Another good restaurant with bocce. Visit the web site: .

As far as the fanny goes, Playaboule has just the ticket - email Thea Galante at .}


Peter Gravallese (Lynnfield, Massachusetts) asks a question (his court photos here ):

"Could you explain the logic behind replaying a frame if the pallino leaves the court? This occurred during a pivotal juncture of a match recently and what looked like a sure 3 points for one team became none. The team which lost the three points cried foul claiming someone could do this at any time to negate a sure loss. They claimed the team causing the pallino to leave the court should be penalized and lose 4 points. It was my court and I had your book to back me up so it was no blood and we replayed the frame."

{Replaying the frame is the international rule as well as the USBF Open Rules accepted practice. Here's one thing to consider - if you have a lot of hard shooters and the pallino gets knocked out of the court often, you might switch to the stainless steel pallino. It's heavy and almost never gets knocked out of play. Mike Grasser has them at and I have a couple for sale (email with request).

Your players are correct when they say that someone could do this at any time to negate a sure loss. Here's the conventional wisdom... If they can make that shot and knock the pallino out of play, they deserve to negate the loss. I was playing in North Carolina with teammate Rico Daniele, a great bocce player and outstanding candlepin bowler. When it looked like we had no chance to avoid giving up a couple points, he fired a rocket at the pallino and intentionally sent it flying out of the court. If you can shoot that small target that accurately you should be rewarded, not penalized.

Now, the opposite can happen too. This past fall I had the last two balls and a chance to shoot the pallino to the back wall which would have given us three or maybe even four points. I hit the pallino right on the button and, since we were playing on Field Turf over concrete, (lots of bounce), the pallino left the court. This ended up being a break for the other team which got to start the frame over with no points scored against them.

One final note: America is about the only country that plays games with teammates stationed at each end of the court who play every other frame. Most of the world plays singles, doubles, and triples and the players walk back and forth, get a little gentle exercise, WHILE PLAYING EVERY FRAME. I am trying to run more events that follow one of these three formats. But sometimes, we station two teammates at each end who play every other frame so we can get 8 players involved instead of only 6. In one league that has more players than courts we even place 3 teammates at each end (6 players per team) in order to accommodate the league's 36 players on two courts. With these formats we have added a "house rule" that, if more than half the balls have been played when the pallino is knocked out we play the frame over from the OPPOSITE end. We figure, those players have been waiting for their turn. If the pallino gets knocked out of play on the seventh or eighth ball, those players at the other end would have to wait for just about another entire frame. So, assuming 8 bocce balls in play, if the target gets smacked out by one of the first four rolls, we play the frame over from the same end. If it leaves the field of play on the fifth or subsequent roll, we play it over from the opposite end.}


Here's an interesting tidbit: if you're hawking bocce products on the net you might want to consider the key words "bocce" and "bocceball." Strictly speaking, the name of our game is bocce, not bocceball or bocce ball. But many people Google us via bocceball and bocce ball. In a recent set of searches that I conducted, my web site came up 1st when Googling Bocce Outing and Bocce Outings, but came up 6th and 7th (still on the first page) with Bocce Ball Outing and Bocce Ball Outings. And searching "Bocceball Outing" and "Bocceball Outings" you couldn't find me until the 5th page of results.

Now I don't pretend to be a "techie" or know the ins and outs of search engine placement. But it seems to me that if people are going to search on line for things like Bocceball and Bocce Ball, we might have to make sure our web site also makes reference to those terms.

Any techies out there have any input? Please REPLY.


Frank Valanzola is already gearing up for the 2009 New Jersey Invitational, which supports New Jersey charities.

"Dear Bocce Supporter,

We kindly request your attendance and participation of this Red, White & Blue event. We are working diligently to organize a worthy list of organizations to support our 3rd Annual Bocce Invitational benefiting Operation Shoebox New Jersey and Boys & Girls Clubs in New Jersey.

The aforementioned 501© 3's are of particular importance due to their continuing efforts to make a difference in the lives of many New Jersey residents and their families. Operation Shoebox New Jersey provides much needed care packages to our soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. Boys & Girls Clubs in New Jersey are committed to enhancing the quality of life of children. Boys & Girls Clubs have created a line-up of tested and proven nationally recognized programs that address today’s most pressing youth issues, teaching young people the skills they need to succeed in life. They offer programs in the areas of education, the environment, health, the arts, careers, alcohol/drug and pregnancy prevention, gang prevention, leadership development and athletics."

A great event for a great cause - very well organized. To offer support, contact Frank Valanzola at, 908.400.0851 or visit .

Click here to view a pdf file.


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 #2 - January 10, 2005

Hawaiian Rules Bocce

Dr. Joe DeFrank of Honolulu, HI wrote to tell me about bocce in his neck of the woods - The University of Hawaii at Manoa {sign me up - I'm ready to try out for the varsity team there}.

Says Dr. Joe..."I have attached two pdf files that will explain the version of bocce ball that we have developed in Hawaii. I would be very interested to know your thoughts on our game and if it really is a unique form of the traditional game or has someone already described the same concepts. We composed the 'Official Tournament Rules' as part of a provisional patent application filed by the University of Hawaii (in 2002). The provisional patent lapsed and no one picked up the utility patent, thus the game is in the public domain and no intellectual property rights need to be protected.

I have provided an image of our Bocce links facility on our Manoa campus on Oahu. Feel free to publish this image and attached files in your newsletter. You can let your readers know that I can be contacted for a personal tour of our links facility with options to play a quick round. I am also trying to develop a contact at ESPN to get some scouts to check out our facility for an activity with ProBowl participants during the their stay in Hawaii this year. Any help with this effort would be greatly appreciated."

{Click on the link below to learn more about this unique and fascinating style of bocce. Dr. Joe has posted two PowerPoint presentations. 'Hawaiian Rules Bocce - a new look at an ancient game" is 9 1/2 minutes long. It describes traditional bocce and how Hawaiian Rules Bocce differs. DeFrank likens HW Bocce to golf, where a foursome can play a cutthroat style where each player tries to outdo the others.

A second presentation - 'Hawaiian Rules Bocce - A narrated movie with lots of action' runs 4 minutes 43 seconds, and gives you a good feel for this Hawaiian bocce, including bouncing balls off coconut trees that may line the play area.}

Questions or comments - email Dr. Joe directly @ (yes, that's spelled correctly) - cc me @ if you don't mind.


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.

A look back at the 2007 National Championship...

Photos of the week
This week's photos come courtesy of Nicole Licare and David Catania. First reprinted in The Joy of Bocce Weekly in 2005, they are now a permanent part of Bocce Venues at

The courts are in Grass Valley (Nevada City, California). The 10' by 70' courts are open to the public but reservations are encouraged for weekend play.

The courts were donated by the Gold Country Italian-American Club in 1982.

View this week's photos

Bocce product of the week

Holiday gift ideas for the bocce lover in your life...

Of course, I think an autographed copy of The Joy of Bocce would be a great gift. Make sure to think up a really cool inscription for me to include.

Click the link below to view other items...

Click for a post holiday bocce shopping experience...

Non bocce product of the week
{Hey, bocce's great, but I'm always on the look-out for all kinds of good products for my readers}

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.


January 28 to February 10, 2009. 19th Annual South Florida Senior Games. For info, call the Senior Games HOTLINE at 954-828-4600 or e-mail: . Also, click or


February 14, 2009 - California - Los Gatos Campo di Bocce. Maureen Albanese Valentine's Day Tournament. 2 men, 2 women. Contact Ben Musolf at or call 408-395-7650.


March 12 - 15, 2009 - Florida - Cape Coral. World Series Bocce Invitational. $6000 first place guaranteed. New Veterans Park Bocce Courts. 3-player teams - round robin. Contact George Furlan @ 239-275-9968.


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

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.

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.
 Check out the merchandise