The Joy of Bocce Weekly
In This Issue: Vol. IV, Issue 18 - May 9, 2005 
•   Notes from the publisher
•   Bocce product of the week
•   Bocce officiating woes...
•   Non bocce product of the week
•   Photos of the week
•   Tournament update
Notes from the publisher
The weekly Ezine for bocce aficionados everywhere
Volume 4, Issue #18 - May 9, 2005
Publisher: Mario Pagnoni Copyright 2005
76 Emsley Terrace, Methuen, MA 01844

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Hello again bocce buddies,

We lost our appeal to the Salem, NH zoning board for our bocce venue. We proposed reducing the greenhouse size by 50% (leaving two courts covered by the greenhouse and two uncovered).

I'm afraid we've reached the end of the line on this project. We'll lick our wounds, cut our losses as best we can, and move on from here. I've met with the mayor and community development people in my home town and we will work toward finding a new winter venue for our bocce group. Stay tuned.

Photo shortage...

It troubles me a bit that there are so many tournaments listed in this ezine and so few send photos of their events. Please consider sending us a half dozen (or 8) pictures so that players in other areas can see what bocce life is like in your neck of the woods.


2nd edition news...

I am accepting orders for the 2nd edition of The Joy of Bocce and can ship the next day. The 300-page book retails in bookstores for $19.45 and at the publisher's web site for $18.75.

Click the link below to order an autographed copy from me. Shipping will be $4.00 (US Priority Mail).

Please let me know how you want the book autographed (type the details in the "Special Inscription/Autograph" box provided).

Also, you can order the book directly from the publisher ( ). They even offer an electronic version at just $4.95 (you download it - no shipping charge).

Click on the image above to order from the publisher's web site or the link below to get an autographed copy directly from me. {If you order from the publisher's site enter Pagnoni in the box for Author = ...}


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Bocce officiating woes...
Publisher's comments in brackets { }

Bob Whitlow of Bocce USA ( ) sends an interesting question…

“A match is being played to the score of 9 with the red team leading 7 to 1. Green has exhausted all their balls. Red player has one ball left in the rack. The red player asks the referee if red still has the point. Referee says "yes" which would make the score 8-1 after the frame ends.

Instead of trying to roll for the winning point with his last ball and/or taking a chance on bumping a green ball closer, the red player decides to roll short, letting the point stand. This will give his partners at the other end the pollina advantage and a chance to win the game in the next frame.

After he rolls his ball the green team captain says "wait a minute - I want a measurement of the primary point." Referee says is green’s point...NOT red...

Red team objects saying to the referee, "you told me it was red's point and I threw off not wanting to sell the point. If I knew it was green, I would have rolled for point."

My question: What is the proper ruling the referee or the tournament director should make after a mistake like this? Let the green point stand, play the frame over, etc? What would be your decision?"

{I think whoever is closer by measurement should score the point. Anyone can ask for a measurement at any time. This was bad officiating. This was also bad judgment by the teams not requesting a measurement. The referee thought the red was in and would have awarded the point to the wrong team if the other team hadn't requested a measurement.

Better officiating would have been, "I think it's red" and that statement probably would have prompted someone to request a measurement.}

In a subsequent email Bocce Bob said…

“Bocce Standards also answered my plea...They say It's red. I too thought the point was red. Although the judge made a mistake, the green team did not request measurement at the time the judge announced the point was red and the green captain accepted his decision at the time of the match."

Says Bob..."If I was a team captain and the judge informed me that my team had the point, I would accept his decision...and NOT ask for a measurement.

As in most rules everywhere, the captain or co-captain may ask for a measurement at any time.

In this scenario, the out team captain (green) did not ask for a measurement and accepted the referee’s decision. Now...when the next ball is rolled, one cannot go back and ask for a measurement."

{Says who?}

"Red point stands ...however by a mechanical measured distance, green is actually closer to the pollina.

Red point stands as the winner of the frame."

{First off, you can run an event and set just about any rules you want. And there are many ways to interpret rules too. I officiate several other sports. I’m the Massachusetts Eastern Area Umpire-in-Chief for ASA (Amateur Softball Association). Any leagues can create rules that supercede the ASA rules. Hey, they might even decide to have four outs in an at-bat instead of three. If our umpiring group doesn’t like it, we can choose not to officiate for that league.

So, if Bocce Standards is your tournament director, it sounds like they’ll say “since the referee incorrectly told you it was red’s point - it IS red’s point - even though we all really know that it was GREEN’s.”

If yours truly is your tournament director, I’ll say... “sorry about the error in officiating, but the ball closer to the object gets the point.”

What if the umpire in baseball invokes the infield fly rule and there aren’t runners on first and second or bases loaded with less than two outs? Is it an Infield Fly just because he says so in error? I don’t think so.

Here's an interesting play from a high level adult men’s fastpitch softball game that occurred here years illustrates my point.

The batter fouled the ball off the barrel of his bat and it spun over toward the first base bench. The umpire yelled out "Foul Ball!" loud and clear, so the batter didn't run. But the first baseman could see that the ball was spinning and had a chance of coming back fair. He waited at the bag, and sure enough, it rolled back into fair territory before reaching first base - making it a fair ball - and, stepping on the bag, he forced the batter-runner out (who was still in the batter's box).

As you can imagine, this caused quite a stir...the batter might have run to first if the umpire didn't declare it a foul ball.

We submitted the play to Oklahoma (ASA national headquarters) where they ruled that it was indeed a fair ball. The umpire was in error to call the ball foul before it touched something or someone in foul territory or it came to rest there. It's up to the players (batter and fielders) to be alert enough to know that the ball might come back fair (even if the ump wasn't alert enough to see this). The first sacker was smart enough to realize that if the ball spun back fair before passing first, he could get an easy out - and he was right.

Can anyone else weigh in on this bocce officiating issue? I'm guessing that this would not happen in international rules play. Please REPLY.}

Learn about International Rules...

Photos of the week
This week’s photos were submitted by Joy of Bocce faithful reader Zio Riccardo (Richard Heisler) of Eureka, California. They show action in the recent Rhododendron Festival Bocce Tournament sponsored by the Sons of Italy in America Lodge 1274.

Zio Riccardo says...

"It’s not as if you need an excuse for a bocce tournament, but it captures the public imagination to link our favorite game to an annual event. So it is here on the North Coast. Rhodys do extremely well here in our mild and wet climate. The colors range from the purple wild type through pinks, whites and reds. Recently I saw yellow and orange rhodys for the first time. In Eureka, CA, the Rhododendron Week gives our Sons of Italy Lodge time for two of our major events. Those who survive our gut-busting Chicken and Polenta Dinner face up to a single elimination bocce tournament.

The weather gave us a long enough break to get the courts into good condition. May Day dawned sunny with light breezes. A dozen teams lined up for the 2005 edition of the Sons of Italy tournament at Redwood Fields in the Eureka Suburb of Cutten. The Whippets (Vince and Lynn Smith with Jan & Ron Ross) overcame the Fasullo Rollers (Evie and Jerry Colivas with Rosemary Fitzpatrick & Jim Phillips) in the finale.

Winners and losers alike had a fine old time with Italian food, wine and music in the Springtime sunshine.

Thanks to Gene Senestraro for ramrodding the event and to all those who helped and participated. Things look good for the summer ahead as the next day ground was broken for another court. More about that later."

{Heisler says that the two courts "were built about seven years ago with a base of clay and an oyster crushed/flour mix on the surface. They are nine feet by seventy-five feet."

Thanks for the excellent photos and description - please follow Zio Riccardo's lead and send photos from bocce in your neck of the woods.}

View this week's photos

Bocce product of the week
Clubhawk Gold Measures

The Premier Boules Measures have been flying off the shelf lately. But Joy of Bocce Weekly subscribers are overlooking an equally fine measure in the Clubhawk Gold. Using a string rather than a steel tape, this is an extremely accurate measuring device.

It extends a couple feet farther than the Premier, has the same calipers for close measurements, and even has a belt clip.

Remember, we don't need a finely calibrated instrument that measures exactly how far balls are from the object ball...we just need to know which is closer to it. This nifty string device does the trick. You pull out enough string to reach the first ball you are measuring. If you have to pull more string from the housing to reach the other ball in contention...then it is farther away!

Click below or the picture above to see more photos showing the Clubhawk’s features in detail. Retails for $21.95 plus $4.00 shipping anywhere in the USA.

Click to order or to view more pictures of the Clubhawk Gold

Non bocce product of the week
Complete Greens

Complete GreensTM offers over 50 quality ingredients that comprise a unique food supplement. Rich in a wide variety of exotic natural components that cannot be found on a supermarket shelf, Complete GreensTM helps nutritionally support diets that have been compromised by today's hurried lifestyles. Available in tablet form or great-tasting powder.

Click to learn more...

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.


Lots of tournament action listed - 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.


May 14, 2005 - California - Martinez - Debbie Gerow Memorial Bocce Tournament - The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Fundraiser - Open – 4 person teams - Martinez Bocce Federation, Waterfront Park - contact Traci Malley @ 916-456-7169


May 14, 2005 - Florida - St. Augustine - Bocce at the Beach - Sponsored by the Sons of Italy, St. Augustine Lodge # 2780 to benefit Northeast Florida Community Hospice. Limited to 30 two-person teams. US Bocce Federation open rules. Contact Guy Tomasello @ 824-7043 or


May 21, 2005 - California - South San Francisco - Open -2 men/2 women - So. SF IACC - Orange Ave. Mem. Park - Contact Rudy Bertolozzi @ 650-583-9936.


May 21, 2005 - New York - Seneca Falls - 95 Ovid St. - 4 player double elimination event - $400 per team entry - contact Natalie Scala @ 585-704-7080.


May 28, 2005 - California - Stockton - I.A.C. - Volo – Doubles (Men) contact Ron Jacobs @ (209) 957-1223. Raffa – Singles Ranking, (Women) contact JoAnn Jacobs @ (209) 957-1223.


June 5, 2005 - California - Sutter Creek - Open – 4 Players. Contact Rick Wagstaff @ (209) 296-6151.


Jun 11, 2005 - California - Martinez - Raffa – Singles Ranking, Men & Women. Contact Keith Tate @ 925-370-0633.


June 18 - 25, 2005 - Michigan - Orion - U.S. National Bocce Championships – Palazzo di Bocce, 4291 S. Lapeer Rd, Orion, MI 48359. Contact Bryan Sanborn at 248-371-9987 x13 or


June 25, 2005 - California - Fairfield - Women’s Tournament - Open – 4 person team - Fairfield Bocce Federation, 1200 Civic Center Dr. Contact Richard Meccette @ 707-434-0190.


July 4, 2005 - California - Martinez - Fourth of July Tournament - Open – 2 person team. Martinez Bocce Federation - Waterfront Park. Contact Bill Kantana @ (925) 228-3635.


July 9, 2005 - California - Martinez - Open - "Norcal" (Northern California), 4 Players. Contact Ken Dothee @ 925-229-2157.


July 8-10, 2005 - Ohio - Dayton. The Bocce Classic XI tournament will field about 70 teams competing for over $7,000 in prize money and raising over $10,000 for local charities. For information check


July 14 – 16, 2005 – California - Indio - World’s Largest indoor guaranteed purse in the history of bocce ($16,000) - Fantasy Springs Resort and Casino - Phone: 800-827-2946. Contact Phil Ferrari @ 800-652-6223 - Open Division and (Fun) Challenge Division.


July 15 - 17, 2005 - New York - Rome - World Series of Bocce. 4 person teams - open rules - contact Toccolana Club @ 315-339-3609.


July 16, 2005 - California - Fairfield - John Magnetti Mem. Tourn. Open – 4 person team - Fairfield Bocce Federation, 1200 Civic Center Dr. Contact Richard Meccette @ 707-434-0190.


July 16, 2005 - St. Frances Cabrini - Open – 4 Players, ICF #191. Contact Vince Cusella @ 408-640-3543.


July 23, 2005 - California - Los Gatos - Campo di Bocce - Raffa –3 Players, Sector Championship. Contact John Ross @ 408-354-0625.


July, 30, 2005 - Michigan - Sylvan Lake - Michigan State Bocce Championships. Open to Michigan residents only. Contact Mike Grasser @ 248-505-4744.


July 30, 2005 - San Francisco - Aquatic Park - Volo – Doubles. Contact Benji Tosi @ 415-720-1147.


August 6, 2005 - ABA Senior Championships - Open – 4 person teams - Must be age 55 or over - TBA - MUST HAVE ABA CARD. Contact Traci Peters @ 916-456-7169.


August 7, 2005 - California - Los Gatos - Campo di Bocce Raffa – Singles, Women’s Ranking. Contact Ben Musolf @(408) 395-7650.


August 13, 2005 - ABA Open Championships – 4 person Team - TBA - MUST HAVE ABA CARD. Contact Traci Peters @ 916-456-7169.


August 20, 2005 - Michigan - Palazzo di Bocce - Open Tournament. Contact Bryan Sanborn at 248-371-9987 x13 or email


August 20, 2005 - California - South San Francisco - Orange Ave. Mem. Park. Women’s Tournament - Open – 4 person team - MUST HAVE ABA CARD. Contact Rose Viscuso @ 650-871-7732.


August 21, 2005 - California - Los Gatos - Campo di Bocce - Juanito Cuneo Memorial Tourney - Volo – 2 Players. Contact Marco Cuneo @ 415-713-5939.


September 16 - 18 - Canada - Ontario - Windsor - Ciociaro Club - 3 person teams - $6,000.00 guaranteed first place.


September 18 - 25, 2005 - Michigan – Orion - World Bocce Championships – Palazzo di Bocce, 4291 S. Lapeer Rd, Orion, MI 48359. Contact Bryan Sanborn at 248-371-9987 x13 or

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