The Joy of Bocce Weekly
 In This Issue: Vol. II, Issue 17 - April 28, 2003 
•   Notes from the publisher
•   Photos of the week
•   Bocce happenings
•   Bocce product of the week
•   Readers' feedback
•   Non bocce product of the week
 Notes from the publisher
The FREE weekly Ezine for bocce aficionados everywhere
Volume 2, Issue #17 April 28, 2003
Publisher: Mario Pagnoni Copyright 2003

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

Order Now @ just $13.95 by clicking on the book image to the right.

I hope you will like this electronic newsletter. To be deleted from my list, you can Unsubscribe at the end of this issue. One of our enthusiastic readers suggested that “…bocce and unsubscribe are mutually exclusive terms.”

If you know others who would enjoy and benefit from this Ezine, encourage them to sign up. You could forward this issue to them so they can decide for themselves if they want to "opt in". I promise that I will never be in the business of selling or trading your email address or other personal information. Our goal = 10,000 subscribers by 12/31/03.

A word about ads: Like any entrepreneurial type, I'd love to turn a profit from something I really enjoy. For now, I have decided not to accept paid advertisements. If I pitch a product here, it is something I have examined and tested and deem it beneficial to our readers.

PLEASE – we are always looking for bocce photos and feedback from all over the USA. We want to connect bocce fans everywhere. You can email ( or snail mail (Mario Pagnoni, P.O. Box 608, Methuen, MA 01844).

Order America's best-selling bocce book

 Bocce happenings
I have been corresponding with a very nice woman from Endicott, NY. Mary Ann Magazzi is VP of Marketing for an outfit called L'aveggio.

Mary Ann tells us about the upcoming Celebration dei Libri…

“I am coordinating an Italian-American book event, based on the actual event which occurs in Italy, the third Sunday in May…a celebration of books, where most bookstores remain open on Sunday to promote the literary arts. Your book, The Joy of Bocce, is perfect for this event.”

L'aveggio owns an espresso bar near the local Sons of Italy. Distributors of Nuova Simonelli espresso equipment, the espresso bar doubles as a showroom. “The events are our way of celebrating the Italian culture; trying to include many of our business neighbors. The neighborhood is being revitalized as ‘Little Italy Endicott’. It's a very ethnic community with primarily Italian American families. We advertise on a radio program called Don Giovanni's Big Italian House party.”

{This sounds like a wonderful event for bibliophiles like me, with activities like author readings, book signings, even “dinner with the authors”. Currently I am trying to clear my schedule to attend, and will keep you posted if I can appear there…a chance to promote my book as well as the sport I love. Maybe we could include a bocce demonstration or mini-tournament. Stay tuned.}


Bob Whitlow of West Frankfort, Illinois, the energetic “Pied Piper of Bocce”, sends this update on his excellent programs…

“The BOCCE USA indoor bocce courts located in the Factory Stores of America Outlet Mall have been well received by the general public. I have averaged introducing and instructing bocce to at least two school/church/senior/civic groups per week. All sessions are private and are free.

Our Tuesday night walk-in play averages 12-16 players per night. We get two to three new rollers each week.

Recently, FWHS clients, along with visitors from Herrin's "Our Directions" facility, qualified their bocce players for the Special Olympics Bocce Tournament to be held in Herrin on May 9th at the HerrinFiesta Italiano bocce courts.

Also, Monday April 7th was our first night of the six-week Bocce class now being conducted at BOCCE USA. A full class of sixteen adults from West Frankfort and neighboring towns make up this inaugural group. From the class enthusiasm I observed opening night, looks like the remaining five nights will be a blast.

After experimenting with the playing surface for a couple of months, a sifted sand and fine grit mixture has proven to work best. Removing the coarse grit was quite a hassle. Now one pass with a four-foot float, and we’re ready to begin rolling again.

Players are reminded that the West Frankfort City Park has a bocce court. There are four very nice courts just west of the Civic Center in Herrin. Herrin courts are open to the public, unless there is a scheduled bocce event. Also, Herrin has many Saturday fundraising not-for-profit bocce tournaments that anyone, including beginners can enter.

If you desire to watch some "great" bocce being played, come to any or all of the three day events during Herrinfiesta Italiano on May 23, 24, 25, 2003. In Herrin you will find one of the best conducted tournaments anywhere in the USA.

Have a bocce question..........give me a call at 618-937-1668." {or email }


We generated much interest in both the Bargetto Winery and the Storia Delle Bocce In Italia E Nel Mondo with last week's submission by Jim Vaughan. It just goes to show you that bocce and fine wine go together extremely well.

For those of you who want to view the complete text of the article discussed last week (Chronicles from Italy: A Review of an Ancient Game), click the book image above.

Explore the fine wines of the Bargetto Winery

 Readers' feedback
{Publisher’s comments in brackets}

We’ve had a number of questions on court installation lately.

Anthony Miles asks…

“I need to know how to set up a bocce court. I have dimensions but I'm looking for info on how much (thickness or depth). This is going to be the first court in my home town and I want to do it right! I'm trying to get my home town to erect a court in Findlay, Ohio. This is a community of 45,000 and I think properly set up we can have a great project making this court work!

If anyone knows of a bocce group in the Toledo, Ohio or Cleveland, Ohio area that I can get in touch with would be gratefully appreciated also." {contact Anthony directly at}

{There are different ideas on how to do this job. I put a subsurface of 5 inches of sand, then 3 inches of crushed stone, followed by 3 inches of stone dust, and finally a top coat (1 inch) of Har-Tru (the stuff they use on tennis courts).

Some guys to talk to who are expert in this area are:

Tom McNutt at
Michael Grasser at}


Kevin from Massachusetts says…

“I am looking for info on court surface for a newly installed bocce court. It is 60x12. I need to add additional material over the exiting stone dust.”

{I had a stone dust court which played pretty well and drained beautifully here in Massachusetts. I wanted to "step up" to a faster surface, so we added a top coat of Har-Tru late last fall, so I can't tell yet how well it is going to perform (haven't played on it yet, as the winter set in and we decided to stay off the court until the spring - also would give the material more than enough time to set up/cure).

I'll know in a couple weeks as our outdoor season starts May 5. You can see how we did the installation at my web site by clicking on the button for Court Top Dressing. I'll be reviewing the Har-Tru performance in my newsletter shortly.}


The Yahoo Group bocceanonymous ( has had several postings on court construction. There are some interesting points of view there.

One posting asks for inexpensive ways to create a court, and responses range from money-saving ideas to arguments for playing on the lawn sans official courts. No charge to join the group.


Bryan Mero of the popular has posted some great pictures of his own court construction (a work in progress that he calls the Ibocce Court). Check them out - while there, explore his excellent site, one of the best bocce sites on the web.

View the Ibocce Court

 Photos of the week
This week's pics come from two sources.

John Robbins says he's found the vacation spot for bocce lovers.

"Looking for a great place to take your vacation this year? My wife and I discovered this recently-completed court in Sonoma County, (northern) CA - billed as 'The heart of the wine country'. It is part of a vacation-rental property called HERON HILL in Healdsburg (rented through Healdsburg Property Management 800-454-6674). The court is 12' x 78' and is A+ in quality - a clay/oyster-shell mix, topped off with oyster-shell flour - bella! The court has (recreational) rules posted in the raised 'endzone' and Perfetta regulation-size balls are provided. The house has 4 bedrooms, large screen TV and Hut Tub. The location of the property promotes the thought, 'Bocce is one of the few games you can enjoy without putting your wine glass down'."

The second photo contributor is Pam Richetta of Tempo Italiano Bocce (Easton, PA). Villa Tempo Italiano, 440 Northampton St., Easton, PA 18042 has tournaments scheduled for July, August, and October.

Contact Tempo Italiano at 610-559-5570 for July 13th tourney info - Tempo Italiano Heritage Day Bocce Tournament.

{Please send photos from different areas of the USA. The Joy of Bocce Weekly tries to feature photos from all over the country and from other countries too. I'd love to post your pictures here as "This Week's Photos."}

View this week's photos

 Bocce product of the week
Lute/scarifier for court maintenance

In addition to the wonderful 7-foot drag brush featured in recent JOB Weekly issues, I’ve decided to add a handy, light-weight metal rake-like tool called a lute/scarifier to my list of bocce court maintenance tools. {As a bonus for us New Englanders, I was glad to discover that it can double as a snow rake to prevent ice dams on the roof. It came in handy this winter as I battled the ice dam problem.}

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 $50.95 plus shipping. The lute/scarifier and 7-foot drag brush (see the Merchandise link at should be all the maintenance tools a bocce court owner needs.

Learn more about court maintenance tools

 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}

The buzz word today in health and nutrition is ANTI-OXIDANT. Everyone seems to agree that we need to increase our consumption of antioxidant nutrients to improve our health and vitality. OPC-3 is an extremely powerful antioxidant that reduces inflammation in the joints and has produced good results with the symptoms of arthritis, tendonitis, bursitis, allergies, asthma, and a laundry list of illnesses making the product sound like a snake oil that's "good for anything that ails you."

This powerful substance composed of natural substances like extracts from grape seed, red wine, and pine bark, does two major things in the body - improves circulation and boosts immunity. The reason the product can impact so many health issues is because so many maladies can be traced to poor circulation and low immunity.

In addition, this product is in what is termed an "isotonic state." It is basically in the same composition as your body fluids. Therefore it need not be digested, but can pass directly into the small intestine and the blood stream. It is what nutritionists call bio-available, not like pills and tablets which are poorly assimilated by the body.

Click the link below to get more info...

More details on the isotonic delivery system for supplements

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