The Joy of Bocce Weekly
The FREE, weekly Ezine for bocce aficionados everywhere
Volume #1  Issue #3   January 21, 2002
Publisher: Mario Pagnoni   Copyright 2002   The Joy of Bocce

Come visit us often at Joy of Bocce.  We have bocce info, 
merchandise, links to other great bocce sites, and the best selling 
bocce instructional book in the USA. The Joy of Bocce

If you know others who would enjoy and benefit from this Ezine, have 
them sign up at Subscribe.  I promise that I will never be in the business of selling or trading your email address or other personal information. If the readership gets large enough, maybe The Joy of Bocce Weekly along with my website can have a unifying influence on the game.  This issue is the third in a kind of a trial run.  The plan is to publish weekly as of March, 2002.

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In this issue
*  Random Notes from the Publisher
*  Special to the Joy of Bocce, by Bryan Mero
*  Bocce Measures 
*  No Indoor Bocce Courts ... An Alternative 
*  Tournament Update 
*  The Games People Play - Still Available

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Random Notes from the Publisher

Welcome back to issue #3.  It is obvious to me now that the Joy of 
Bocce Weekly is a success (artistic if not financial), and I will try to 
make it a legitimate weekly very soon.  I just had extensive knee 
surgery and am on some pretty hefty painkillers.  I'll will write as often 
as I am semi-lucid.  This is rapidly becoming a "labor of love" for me 
(the Ezine, not the drugs!).  Getting some bocce dialog going is great, 
but I need to get to a larger audience.  That will be my focus for the 
next six months.  Please help this publication grow by telling your 
bocce playing friends to sign on.  Forward this issue to them and 
encourage them to opt in at Subscribe. It's FREE! 

I got no response from readers to my question about 45 degree angle 
boards at the ends of bocce courts for playing carom shots.  Has 
anyone out there seen this?  Also, Victor Avondoglio of Torino, Italy 
tells of a variation of the game where the object ball is not a ball at all, but a 
metallic washer-like object that never moves once placed.  Can anyone shed light on this?  Victor, now living in the states, says that he is going to introduce bocce to his New Jersey golfing buddies "...so I can make some money off them."

One of my favorite lines from a reader comes from Mike Hoban of 
Raleigh, NC.  His strategy was to build his own bocce court because, 
he reasoned..."Build it and they will come...with beverages."

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Special to The Joy of Bocce Weekly
"Bocce Musings" by Bryan Mero

There aren't many sports that can compare to bocce. It's unlike the 
game of bowling since there are no pins to knock down. Shuffleboard 
comes close but does not have the same element of character of each 
court. The only sport that compares is golf. The physical skill is 
different but the feeling is the same. You make one good shot on the 
links and your entire round was worth it. You're also left with the sense 
that, "I can do that again." Bocce is very similar. Although it doesn't 
take incredible strength or speed, it can produce the same rush of 
adrenaline. Every roll can produce a well placed point, a wasted throw, 
or other turn of fortunes. 
 
Luckily the game is not limited to older Italian men in little white hats. 
The team I played on this year had daughters, fathers and 
grandparents all playing as teammates. Ages ranged from 8 to 72.  I'd 
like to see you do that with a backyard game of basketball, softball or 
touch football. Here is a sport for the masses. There is no prejudice 
against age, sex or physical prowess. The playing field is literally made 
level and challenges everyone. 
 
I've had many people scoff at the idea of playing bocce until they 
actually attempt their first roll. Then it's a revelation. They never knew 
how exciting the game was until they took their first bocce in hand and 
rolled it on a bed of crushed oyster shells. One or two shots and most are pulled into the web of mystique of this glorious, age-old game. 

{Publisher's note: Bryan Mero's www.iBocce.com is a nifty and very 
complete website including info on bocce courts, rules, events, and 
bocce products.  Check it out. Bryan's Site }

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Bocce Measures

The Prohawk International measuring devices promoted here are 
making a huge hit.  I've selected the two of the best quality and value 
and have placed four photos of each on my website.  They sell for 
about 20% to 25% less than comparable products I've seen elsewhere.  
The Premier Boule Measure is a tape measure (extends to 2 meters - 
about 6  feet) with self-locking mechanism, calipers, and a game 
scoring mechanism.  The Clubhawk Gold uses string instead of a steel 
tape (extends to 9 feet), and includes calipers and a belt clip.  Either of 
these would make a great gift for the bocce lover in your life. Every 
serious bocce player (and not-so-serious player) should have one.  
Please check them out at Measures.

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No indoor bocce courts for cold weather play - here's an alternative

We have been playing recreational bocce every Monday morning here 
in Eastern Massachusetts.  While most bocce players tell of cookouts 
and wine that complement the sport, we are partial to morning coffee 
and croissant o' chocolat.  A collection of retirees and entrepreneurial 
types, we were able to play outdoors this year until December.  Initially, we 
relegated ourselves to the fact that we were going to have to switch to 
playing cards on Mondays until spring bocce could resume.  There are 
indoor courts around Massachusetts, mind you, just not near us.  There are lots 
of terrific venues in Western Massachusetts, a hot-bed of "pound the 
pallino to the backboard" bocce.  And there are some nifty courts about 
a forty-minute ride from us...but nothing close to home.  Noting the 
popularity of places like Home Run Park and Hitter's Park (where 
baseball and softball players bat, field, and stay in shape in the off season) we checked them out to see if they could accommodate bocce.  They have yards and yards of AstroTurf there and are not very busy in the morning.  Both 
Home Run Park and Hitter's Park are reconditioned old mill buildings 
from Lawrence's glory days.   Sure enough, the owners were glad to 
have us and, after several weeks on a trial basis, we are working out a 
deal to play our winter bocce season indoors.  For now, we just place 
some two-by-fours at both ends and part-way toward the court's 
middle.  Two of our regulars, one a retired engineer and the other a fellow who worked on the Alaska pipeline are planning to build structures that we can 
use for play, then take down and store when we leave.  This might be 
a good option for those of you, like my group, not lucky enough to be in a warm 
climate or in an area populated with indoor bocce facilities.  Check it out.

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Tournament Update

If you know of other events no matter how big and professional or 
small and recreational, let me know and I'll post the info here. Here are 
those I know of in chronological order.

Event:		Southwest Florida Open Bocce Tournament
Dates: 		March 9 & 10, 2002
Location:	Italian American Club, 25250 Airport Rd. Punta
                Gorda, FL 33950
Info:		The Italian American Bocce Association of Punta 
Gorda, Florida will host the double elimination event.  Entrance fee is 
$200 per team (4 player teams) with $7500 in prize money.  1st place 
= $4000, 2nd = $2000, 3rd = $1000, 4th = $500 {based on 50 teams 
participating - with more or fewer teams prize money adjusted 
accordingly}.  Food and beverages will be sold. Game times 9:00 AM 
to 5:00 PM both days. For more info contact George Farruggio@ 941-
575-0482, Fax 941-575-6231, E-MAIL WAM@ISNI.NET Deadline for 
registration = February 28, 2002.

Event:		        2002 United States Championships
Dates:		        May 4th thru 12th, 2002
Location:		Los Gatos, CA
Info:			Donna Allen of the USBF tells us that "the facility 
is fabulous.  Check it out...  Campdibocce Both International style of rules 
will be played as well as Open." 

Event:		The Chattanooga Southeastern Bocce Tournament
Dates:		August, 2002
Location:	Bluff View Arts District, Chattanooga, TN
Info:		A field of sixteen four-person teams with cash 
prizes of $7000. Participants enjoy great competition, gourmet dining, 
and partake of the cultural amenities that abound. For more info call 
423-265-5033 ext. 224.  Also check out "the most scenic court in the 
South" at Chattanooga.

Event:		Chicopee, Massachusetts Open
Dates:		Not set yet
Location:	Szot Park, Chicopee Mass.
Info:		Contact Rico Daniele, President Wonderful World 
of Bocce Association WWBA 1-800-BOCCE54

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Still available at Joy of Bocce
The Joy of Bocce (128 pages - 7" X 10" B/W Photos & Diagrams
ISBN 1-57028-044-4) The first instructional book on bocce in America.  

"My wife and I really enjoy your book.  We started playing bocce when 
Campo di Bocce opened in February of 1997.  The first thing we did was 
purchase a copy of your book to learn as much about the game as we could.  All 
the pages are dog eared now, but our favorite page is 55 and your positive 
mental imaging ideas.  It has prevented many an argument between 
my wife and I after a bad shot or missed lag.  We just shrug our shoulders and say "page 55!"    John Ross

Chapters cover everything from how to play, strategy, where to get 
equipment, and how to build a court.

Here's What People Are Saying About The Joy of Bocce...

"Hats off to Masters Press for publishing the first instructional book 
promoting what has been called the best kept secret in sports and 
what is now being hailed as the sport of the 21st century."
Phil Ferrari, President
World Bocce Association

$12.95 plus Shipping - you can pay by mailing a check or on-line with 
PayPal - let me know if you want any special autograph inscription.  
Click here 
The Joy of Bocce
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The Games People Play - Still Available

I've located a gem of a series of Outdoor Games books by talented 
author Steven Boga.  He's written short, well crafted, clearly illustrated 
books on:  Horseshoes, Croquet, Badminton, Volleyball, and Archery.

I recommend them highly (each under $10.00) and you can find them 
at Outdoor Games

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Another issue of The Joy of Bocce Weekly coming soon - please tell 
your bocce playing friends about us.  {Publisher's Note: Getting some 
bocce dialog going is great, but we need to get to a larger audience.  
Please help this publication grow by telling your bocce playing friends 
to sign on.  Forward this issue to them and encourage them to opt in at 
Subscribe