The Joy of Bocce Weekly
 In This Issue: Vol. III, Issue 4 - January 26, 2004 
•   Notes from the publisher
•   Bocce product of the week
•   Storia Delle Bocce In Italia E Nel Mondo
•   Non bocce product of the week
•   Photos of the week
•   Tournament update
 Notes from the publisher
The FREE weekly Ezine for bocce aficionados everywhere
Volume 3, Issue #4 - January 26, 2004
Publisher: Mario Pagnoni Copyright 2004

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 the list, you can Unsubscribe at the end of this issue. We will quickly and permanently remove your email address from our list (we'll be sorry to see you go). But, be aware that 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.


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).


Joy of Bocce 2nd edition

I'm working hard on a second edition of The Joy of Bocce - and simultaneously trying to land a publisher.

Anybody out there have any clout with publishers? My first book on education was a McGraw-Hill BOMC selection. My second (on computers) got the best review of any book ever brought to press by the publisher. And my softball book is still in print since 1990 with over 50,000 copies sold. Yet The Joy of Bocce is out of print and looking for a new home. The new edition will have lots of new information and photographs.

I intend to use some of the photographs that readers have submitted for our Photos of the Week feature. Please let me know if you have sent me photos and DON'T want them included in the upcoming book.

If you send photos in the future (please do), be advised that I will consider them for inclusion in this second edition, unless you tell me otherwise. Be assured that I will give credit to the photographer whenever possible.


2nd Edition Update

Over the next nine weeks or so, I thought it would be interesting to chronicle my progress in getting the second edition of The Joy of Bocce published. If nothing else, it will coerce me to get some writing done each week as I report the progress here.

The process goes something like this…

The hopeful author writes what are termed “query” letters to publishers stating who he is, what he wants to write, and why he is the one to write it. He sends a lot of these, always asking if the publisher would be interested in reviewing a full book “proposal”.

The process often takes many weeks (even months) and some publishers will not respond to the query at all. Others will send a form letter rejection, and, with luck, some will agree to take a peek at your manuscript with no obligation to accept or publish it.

Next, the author sends the proposal to any publisher who has agreed to examine it. This includes marketing data as well as table of contents, chapter outlines, sample chapters, or perhaps even the completed manuscript.

After looking over the proposal (perhaps another 6 – 8 weeks) the author may receive either a “thanks, but no thanks” letter, or a contract.

Here is my status report as of 1/26/04

Number of query letters sent in 2004 = 8
Number of rejections = 0
Number of requests to view proposal = 2

Writing progress report...

Chapter 1 Done - about 10% new material
Chapter 2 Done - about 20% new material
Chapter 3 Done - about 50% new material
Chapter 4 Done - about 10% new material
Chapter 5 Done - 40% new material
Chapter 6 Done - 20% new material
Chapter 7 Needs some work - lots of new info
Chapter 8 Needs reworking
Chapter 9 Needs some more revision
Chapter 10 Needs reworking

New Chapter – "Bocce Courts We’ve known and Loved" - need to sift through photos to pick best ones

New Chapter – "Organizing a League/Tournament" - roughed out, but needs a lot of work

New Chapter – "Best of The Joy of Bocce Weekly" - roughed out, but needs a lot of work

Stay tuned.

Learn how to top dress your bocce court - a pictorial

 Storia Delle Bocce In Italia E Nel Mondo
Jim Vaughan, Western Region Sales manager for the Bargetto Winery (Soquel, California) has produced another excellent newsletter with a bocce theme.

Because of the rising popularity of bocce Vaughan declared… “I found that hosting buyers and consumers with informal wine and bocce tournaments was suddenly a feasible method of promoting BARGETTO wines across the country.”

You may recall that last year Vaughan reviewed the three-volume Storia Delle Bocce In Italia E Nel Mondo (The Story of Bocce in Italy and the World) written by Signor Daniele Di Chiara, historian of the Federazione Italiana Bocce (Rome, Italy).

Vaughan is back with more of Di Chiara’s interesting tidbits about the history of our beloved game. After having the text translated into English, Vaughan has deftly edited passages for his newsletter. A brief excerpt follows. For the complete issue, contact the Bargetto Winery (888-400-WINE) and ask for Volume 23 Number 11, November 2003. View the Bargetto web site by clicking on the Storia book image above.

“All across Europe, specifically during the flourishing Renaissance Period, bocce was catching on. From the streets and alleyways of Venice, Paris and London, the game also known as boules, lawn bowling and petanque was gaining interest by a wide range of the populace. What can be described as excessive merriment, primarily by the peasantry class, is what encouraged the restrictions. The most articulate example of this attitude is voiced by Englishman Sir Thomas More is this 1543 proclamation:

‘Servants, peasants, citizens…people of all classes are exhibiting extravagant taste in food and clothing. Bordellos abound, especially those that also provide taverns or brew houses. There is deplorable waste of money in games of chance such as darts, cards and bocce…Are these games not merely incentive for theft? We must liberate the people, then, from these wicked ruinous ways. Redeem them from sloth and send them back to their agricultural and wool markets. Give them back to the satisfaction of doing something useful…those with time on their hands get into trouble.’

Most of the bocce literature mentions yet another Englishman in the game’s history. If there was ever a Dream Team captain for this time period, Sir Francis Drake would be the leading candidate. Regarded with great respect in the English navy as a daring and bold navigator of the seas, Drake was also quite passionate about bocce. Described in the book is a scene of Drake engaged in a heated game with fellow officer Admiral Lord Howard. With the seemingly invincible Spanish Armada rounding the entrance to Plymouth Harbor, Drake is quoted as saying, quite calmly: ‘First we finish the game. We have plenty of time to worry about the Armada.’ Drake won the contest against Admiral Howard and then soundly crushed the Spanish fleet.”


Valentine's Day gifts with the Joy of Bocce logo

Save $5 on orders over $45 by using coupon code "CPLUVSU". Coupon expires February 4, 2004.

In addition, all orders for large mugs and travel mugs through February 4th include a free bag of gourmet coffee.

Give a Joy of Bocce Valentine...

 Photos of the week
This week’s pics highlight our attempt to promote bocce to our local high school students. Our bocce group (Ken Waldie Senior Sports Circuit, Inc.) coordinated with the physical education staff so that we could set up temporary courts, demonstrate how to play, and run a day of games.

The Methuen High School (Massachusetts) field house has a wooden basketball floor in the center and synthetic flooring around the perimeter. Methuen High is the home of the Rangers…named for Rogers' Rangers of French and Indian War fame.

The phys. ed. teachers had barrier type devices (labeled Border Patrol) that they use to box in an area for sports like floor hockey. We made them our bocce court side- and end-boards, setting up several courts. It was exam week at the high school, so phys. ed. students had the option of sitting in the bleachers to study, playing basketball, or learning to play bocce.

The synthetic flooring played extremely fast, a seemingly frictionless surface. We slowed the court by laying down a carpet that we had previously donated to the school. Ken Waldie Senior Sports members Bill Hadley, Leo Roy, Dr. Joseph Kalil, and Officer Jeff Torrisi were on hand to instruct and encourage the high schoolers.

The phys. ed. teachers cleverly budgeted for 5 sets of inexpensive plastic bocce sets from Spalding. At first the games were male dominated. Then, with a little encouragement from the gym teachers, the girls got involved. Some games were co-ed. In the end, we had to set up additional make-shift courts to keep all the participants going.

Our goal was to promote the game to the high schoolers - mission accomplished!

Please feel free to follow this model. Have your bocce group contact a school in your area, offer to run a bocce day, give a little demonstration and instruction, then let the games begin! This game is still the best kept secret in sports. Let's spread the word Johnny Appleseed style.

View this week's photos...

 Bocce product of the week
Chris Pfeiffer of Backyard Bocce, Inc. has brought to market a line of portable bocce courts that are both practical and reasonably priced. Pfeiffer’s concept grew out of his experience with Special Olympics, and a portion of the proceeds from sales benefit SO.

For large groups competing in an open field, Pfeiffer designed an ingenious series of bocce court templates that are easy to set up and take down. There are three different courts to choose from (all are 12’ by 60’). The courts are portable, lightweight, and extremely easy to assemble and disassemble.

Set-up is not unlike pitching a tent. You stretch out the template, pull it tight with bungee cords, then drive a couple of stakes into the ground. Next, plant some flags indicating end lines and half court (visual landmarks), and you are set to go within five minutes. Foul lines are demarcated by green and red vinyl sewn into the material ten feet from each end. The courts are ideal for casual, recreation players who want to “step up” a notch without spending big bucks for their own traditional court. Template courts are available in 1-inch vinyl width at $39.99 and 2-inch width at $59.99. Each carries a $10 shipping charge.

With the third court, which has sideboards,set-up is a little more involved, but not daunting. The written directions are clear and well illustrated, and you need only a cordless drill and a mallet. Cost is $349.99 plus $40.00 shipping.

The idea is to drill into the ground so that you can drive in some plastic ground anchors every ten feet in a straight line.

Then you insert metal support posts (which you attach to the mesh sideboards) into the ground anchors, taking care to keep that straight line. The process takes 30-45 minutes the first time, but once the ground anchors are in, the set-up time can be cut in half.

{Note: the ground anchors can be eliminated if you think you might want to set the court up in different locations on different occasions. Just drive the support posts directly into the holes that you drill in the ground. Use the ground anchors only if you want a permanent home for your court.}

To learn more, or to order click the link below...

More about Portable Courts...

 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}

Need a first-rate web site that doesn’t cost thousands?

I can offer you a package that puts you in control of your own website with no need for programming skills. These websites are perfect for small to mid-size businesses or hobbyists. I built with this package.

I can set up your site very quickly and then show you how to maintain it with simple "point and click" technology. So, whenever you have to make a change, run a special, offer a holiday sale, etc., you can handle it yourself without having to wait for a programmer to fit you into his schedule, (and without having to pay his $50 to $100 per hour fee).

We even include a toll-free number for tech support 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM Pacific Coast Time.

Check out another site that I built with this technology - It’s named after my friend Ken Waldie who was a passenger on the ill-fated American Airlines Flight 11 that hit the World Trade Center on 9/11/01. You can read about my friend Ken and the Senior Sports Circuit that we established in his honor (we offer softball, basketball, and bocce for anyone age 50 and over.

Click the link below or the photo of our "board of directors" above to check out the site. Then email me at or call 978-686-8679 to chat with me “live” about your web site.

Visit one of my favorite web sites...

 Tournament update
{chronological order}

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.

February 7 & 8, 2004 - Cape Coral World Series of Bocce - 4-person teams, double elimination, $250 per team entry, deadline January 20th - 1st PLACE $4,000 - 2nd PLACE $2,500 - 3rd PLACE $1,500 - 4th PLACE $500 - 5th PLACE $300. Contact GEORGE FURLAN – TEL: 239- 275-9968.

March 20 & 21, 2004 - 5th annual Southwest Florida Open Bocce Tournament. Contact George Farruggio of the Italian American Bocce Association of Punta Gorda, Florida @ 941-575-0482 E-Mail

April 17, 2004 - Second annual Bellingham Bay Bocce Tournament - Open rules - Bellingham Sportsplex Indoor Soccer Field - for more info see tournament link on or contact

May 15, 2004 - Ken Waldie SSC, Inc. Tournament. Lawrence, Massachusetts. Four-player teams, 12' by 72' foot AstroTurf courts. Contact Mario Pagnoni at

May 24, 2004 - international invitational tournament - looking for teams from the US. Contact Bruce Fuller, proprietor of d'Asolo Vineyards of Oliver, B.C. Canada (Wine Capital of Canada) at

May 28 to June 5, 2004 – United States Championships, Stockton, CA.

July 9-11, 2004, Bocce Classic X, Dayton, OhioOctober, 2004 - North American Bocce Championship, Montreal. Contact Mike Conti @ 847-692-6223 or


Henselite Bowls Measure - telescopic - precise - fits in your pocket

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