The Joy of Bocce Weekly
In This Issue: Vol. V, Issue 13 - March 27, 2006 
•   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 5, Issue #13 - March 27, 2006
Publisher: Mario Pagnoni Copyright 2006
76 Emsley Terrace, Methuen, MA 01844

Greetings Bocce Nation,

This weekend our non-profit group ran a bocce tourney fund-raiser for the North Andover High School Softball team. We grouped the 12 teams into 4 pools of 3 and they played the other two teams in their pool. Then we seeded the teams based on win/loss record and point differential, sending eight teams on to a single elimination format.

Things were going great until one of the lenses fell out of my reading glasses and I started writing the wrong teams on the "elite eight" bracket board. Luckily, clearer vision (on the part of others) prevailed.

We made a few bucks for the charity, introduced the game to some newcomers to the sport, and fifty or so people had an enjoyable afternoon. This is a low overhead and relatively easy way for a group/charity to make $1000 or so. If you are in the neighborhood (Massachusetts/New Hampshire) and would like to give it a try, contact me at and we'll show you how to do it.)


Please add to your "whitelist" or email address book program, so that you have no trouble receiving future issues!

Also, click "Confirm" at the end of this ezine to further ensure consistent delivery.


Joy of Bocce 2nd Edition

Click the link below to order an autographed copy from me. Shipping will be $4.00 (US Priority Mail). And please let me know how you want the book autographed (type the details in the "Special Inscription/Autograph" box provided).

Also, you can order an electronic version from the publisher ( ) 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 = ...}


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.”


P.S. Did a friend send you this? Sign up to get your own here - - it's entertaining, useful, and complimentary.

Order an autographed copy of the Joy of Bocce 2nd Edition

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

Michael Oliver, Troop 993, 751 Springbloom Dr., Millersville, MD writes...

"For my Eagle Scout project I am proposing to construct a bocce ball court on Our Lady of the Fields Church property located at 1070 Cecil Ave S Millersville, MD 21108. The court will be located behind the church next to the pavilion used for church picnics and other get-togethers. The court will be twelve feet wide and sixty feet long. The playing service of this court will be of compacted stone dust. The court will be used mostly by the Italian Club, youth groups, and at church picnics. The Priest and the Italian Club are the major supporters of this project at the church."

{What a great project to earn Eagle Scout ranking! If any reader has expertise in scouting/bocce court construction and is in Michael's neighborhood, I could email you his project details for your review and perhaps you could offer advice/suggestions. Please REPLY.}



George Hoehl requests help for Maryland SO...

"I am a coach for Special Olympics Maryland – Charles County - for their Bocce training program. I was wondering if you would include a request for volunteers for our Summer Tournament in June. We play at Towson University and have a two day Tournament with Special Olympic Athletes from the entire State of Maryland. Please provide me feedback and if you would include this request I will work on an article for one of your April issues.

I also host a 30 Athlete Special Olympic Tournament in June in Waldorf, MD were we could also use volunteer officials."

{Yes! Keep us informed. Please send info/article/photos...volunteers contact at George at}


Jerry Russo says...

"Just watched Dr DeFrank's version of bocce. I think it was great. Keep up with refreshing articles like this.

I doubt if I will go back to Hawaii, but if I do I will certainly look him up. In the meantime perhaps you may convince others closer to the East coast, like the Bahamas, to start their version."

{Yes, that is precisely what the good doctor is attempting to do. See photos of the week below for more on Hawaiian bocce...Vegas Style...}


Norm Ortman has a common request...

"Thank you for your book 'The Joy of Bocce' and your weekly e-mails. We lost our pallino. Do you know where or how I could purchase one pallino only?"

{While "professional" players purchase a new set of bocce balls every time they get a couple nicks too many, most recreation players purchase one set that lasts a lifetime. However, many people seem to lose pallinos and need to re-order.

Lots of vendors will sell you a single pallino -,,
and others. Click the link below to view samples...}

Bocce Ball Sets

Ann Bishop asks...

"During the segment on bocci ball for the Isaac Mizrahi show, the guest, Steve Schirripa, stated that there was a park in Brooklyn where he had played. Do you know the name of the park?"

{I've played the tape back a couple times, listening carefully - it was a great show. We had brought a custom built portable court to Manhattan for the taping. It sounds like Schirripa is saying "Diker Park". I don't know of it. I know there is a Marine Park in Brooklyn with some excellent, lighted bocce courts. Can any reader help with this question? Please REPLY. I tried to "Google" Diker Park Brooklyn with limited success.}

Click for other outdoor games...

Photos of the week
This week’s pictures were submitted by Honolulu's Dr. Joe DeFrank {University of Hawaii at Manoa Dept. of Tropical Plant and Soil Science}. The good doctor has combined his area of technical expertise with his love for bocce to create a novel approach to playing our game. He calls is "Vegas Style Bocce."

He says...

"I have provided some images that capture the fun at our St. Patrick's Day Bocce Tournament held on the UH Manoa Campus on 03/18/06. Feel free to use these on your e-magazine publication. We had about 70 people enter the tournament and after 4 rounds (5 links per round) had 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th places determined. First place won a real fancy bocce ball set with swirling color schemes and less fancy balls in decreasing order of finish. Everyone had a good time and many enjoyed bocce for the first time. Please feel free to share these images with the Bocce Nation."

{I asked if the balls might be lawn bowls as they appear in some of the photos to be biased (weighted on one side) or "out of round" as some tool makers say. His answer...}

"The balls we use are normal round balls. I spray painted the balls to have more distinct markings to aid in scoring for night play. It would be great to find tournament level balls with distinct 2-ball pairs."

Then he added...

"I wanted to provide more details on our 'Vegas Style' bocce tournament. The competition is all singles with 4 people per match. In our facility, we have 5 links per Round. The links are designed with a variety of lengths with 4 different grass on 5 links. So not only do we have distinct sizes and contours, we have different textures to deal with on each link.

Everyone in the tournament starts with 5 chips and no additional chips are added to the tournament once it starts. We play 4 Rounds to determine 1st, 2nd and 3rd places just like a golf tournament. In the first Round there is a 1 chip ante. Before we start, each player tosses a chip into a minnow net held by the referee.

Players are limited in their ball release location by a 1-meter circle whose center is a marker (tape measure) set by ref on the first link. The ref also sets the pallino location at the start of play for the first link only. The winner of the first link collects the chips and sets the location of the marker for the release circle at the next link. The winning player tosses the pallino, throws the first ball with other players throwing based on the closeness to the pallino in the previous link.

Play continues for 5 links and then players are asked to log their score. Starting with 2nd Round, there is a 2 chip ante minimum or the winner of a link can bet the lowest chip count in the foursome. In Rounds 3 and 4 the ante rises to 3 and 4 chips respectively. After the first Round, foursome are ranked based on chip count with the highest chips grouped together and so on down to players with the minimum chip count to enter the Round.

The combination of match play and chip wagering on each link makes for some unique play and results. The wagering becomes a strategic game within the bocce match for each link. Players, even novices, quickly understand the wagering concept that adds to the fun and tension.

I view this style of tournament play as an ideal fund raising vehicle where the entry fee goes to a charity and prizes are donated for the wining places. My objective in all of this is to have a commercial installation of the links system of bocce at resorts and clubs so that more people can come to appreciate the game and fine turf grass. I have been trying for years to get some ESPN scouts to check out our game so that a tournament can be staged during Pro Bowl week in Hawaii. I would love to see an AFC vs. NFC competition or a replay of the Super Bowl with cheerleaders competing and the football players rooting for their team, a role reversal for both groups! Forget the Bud bowl - let's get the Bocce Nation calling for a Bocce Bowl during Pro Bowl week in Hawaii. I'm ready for the action.

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions regarding our style of play. I look forward to seeing you in Hawaii some day and rolling a few."

Dr. Joe DeFrank
3190 Maile Way, Room # 102
Honolulu, HI 96822
Ph: 808-956-5698, FAX 808-956-3894

University of Hawaii at Manoa
Dept. of Tropical Plant and Soil Science (Weed Science)

{Click the picture (above right) for more Vegas Style Bocce pics...

I've made this a separate page on the web site so that it will be permanently available (not just this week). To navigate there, web surfers can click on Bocce Venues, then scroll down and click on the first Hawaii picture.}

View this week's photos

Bocce product of the week
Bocce Court Maintenance Tools

I’ve seen all kinds of home-made court maintenance brushes and scrapers. Two things have always struck me about them. 1 – they look like they are home-made and 2 – they tend to be HEAVY.

7' Drag Brush

Manufactured by Lee Tennis (makers of the Har-Tru surface), this court maintenance tool created for tennis courts works exceptionally well for bocce courts. The 7-foot drag brush is light-weight and, even if you have a 13- or 14-foot wide court, you can smooth it over with just two passes. This is quick enough to do between games without players standing around waiting very long.

Bristles are 4 ½ inches of synthetic fibers and the strong but light-weight frame is aluminum. Retails for $149.95 plus shipping.


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 $54.95 plus shipping.

Besides a heavy roller, the lute/scarifier and 7-foot drag brush should be all the maintenance tools a bocce court owner needs.

Click to go to merchandise order...then scroll to bottom of page

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}

Market America Isotonix® Maximum ORAC Formula

I discovered this company's excellent products ten years ago and have been one of the faithful ever since.

Many of the supplements (Isotonix) are in an "isotonic state." By adding a specified amount of water to these powdered vitamins they approximate the composition of your body fluids. There is no need for digestion, the product passing directly into the small intestine and the blood stream. It becomes what nutritionists call bio-available, not like pills and tablets which are poorly assimilated by the body.

The best defense against the dangers of oxygen and nitrogen radicals is a good ORAC offense. Isotonix Maximum ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity) contains an assortment of bioflavonoids and other polyphenolic compounds that help protect against free radicals. Each serving contains 3000 ORAC units.

Click the link below to get more info...improve your health and maybe even your bocce game too!

Click for more info on Market America Isotonix® Maximum ORAC Formula and other isotonic vitamins

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.


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.


March 31 - April 1, 2006 - Arizona - Phoenix - $200 team entry / 4 person teams and $4000.00 first prize. Second place = $2,000, 3rd = $1,000, 4th = $500. Contact Pasquale D'Aliesio @ 602-569-9149 or


April 8, 2006. Massachusetts - North Andover. Bocce fund-raiser for Methuen High School Baseball. $100 entry fee covers prizes, tourney play and pizza. Coach Fabrizio hopes to raise funds for batting practice L-screens. Contact him at


April 8, 2006 – California - Los Gatos. Campo di Bocce - Open, 4 person teams. Contact Bill Schlaefer @408-379-9409.


April 15, 2006 – California - Stockton. Italian Athletic Club. Open, 4 person teams. Contact Ron Jacobs @209- 957-1223 or


April 22, 2006 - California - San Francisco - Orange Ave. Mem. Park - Triples (3-person teams) - Open rules - contact Alvaro Bettucchi @ 650-871-9278.


April 22, 2006 - South Carolina - Charleston - 6th Annual Slate Bocce Bash benefits Special Olympics of the Lowcountry. Contact Paula Byers at 843-795-5316 or or visit .


April 29, 2006 - Washington - Bellingham Bay Bocce Tournament - 4th annual charity fundraiser ( this year for Hospice ). Four person teams $20/person, 32 teams. Details at or contact Tom at 360-224-2909.


April 29, 2006 - California - Concord - 10:00 AM. American Bocce Association is conducting a FREE Learn how to Play Punta, Raffa, Volo class at Concord Bocce Federation. To register, call Alfredo Herrera 510-787-2317.


April 29, 2006 – California - Sacramento. East Portal Bocce Club. Open, 4 person teams. Contact Rick Wagstaff @209-296-6151 or


May 5 - 7, 2006 - Illinois - Highwood. Pallino d'Oro - Men's & Women's International Rules Rafa Singles Championship. May 5 = Women's Competition. May 6 & 7 = Men's Competition (Highwood Bocce Club) Participants must reside in USA. Contact Mike Grasser @ 248-505-4744 or


May 6, 2006 – California - San Mateo. Peninsula Italian American Social Club. Women’s Open, 4 person teams. Contact Rose Viscuso @ 650-349-7732.


May 6, 2006 – California - San Mateo. Peninsula Italian American Social Club. Men’s Punto, Raffa, Volo, 3 person teams. Contact Adriano Undorte @ 650-591-3318.


May 6, 2006 - Florida - Saint Augustine Beach. Charity event to benefit USO of Northeast Florida. OPEN - 2 person team - USBF OPEN RULES. Surface:Clay and Mixed Sand. Barbeque included with fee of $20.00 Paid in Advance or $25.00 day of Tournament. Contact Guy Tomasello @ 904-82-7043 or


May 13, 2006 - California - Martinez - Debbie Gerow Memorial Bocce Tournament/The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Fundraiser - Open – 4 person team. Contact Traci Malley @ 916-456-7169.


May 13, 2006 – California - Los Gatos - Campo di Bocce. Punto, Raffa, Volo, Singles, Men’s Ranking Tournament. Contact Ben Musolf @408-857-0074 or


May 20, 2006 - California - South San Francisco - Open -2 men/2 women - IACC - Orange Ave. Mem. Park. Contact Rudy Bertolozzi @ 650-583-9936.


May 20, 2006 – California - Carmel Valley (Carmel Valley Athletic Club). Open, 4 person teams (2 Men, 2 Women). Contact Janelle Ansberry @ 831-915-0727.


May 27, 2006 – California - Carmel Valley (Carmel Valley Athletic Club) Open, 4 person teams (2 Men, 2 Women). Contact Janelle Ansberry @ 831-915-0727.


June 3, 2006 - California - Fairfield - Women’s Tournament - Open – 4 person teams - Fairfield Bocce Federation, 1200 Civic Center Dr. Contact Richard Meccette @ 707-434-0190.


June 3 - 4, 2006 – California - Sutter Creek (Italian Benevolent Society) - Open, 4 person teams (No more than two men per team). Oldest continuous Italian Festa in the United States. Contact Rick Wagstaff @ 209-296-6151 or


June 10, 2006 – California - Martinez - Volo, 2 person. Western Sector Championships. Contact Jarrod Garner @ 925-783-6796.


June 17, 2006 - California - Crockett - AAU National Raffa Championships - 3-person teams - Crockett Bocce Federation. Crockett Community Center, 850 Pomona St. MUST HAVE ABA or AAU CARD - contact Dick Gomez @ 707-554-9916.


June 19 – 24, 2006 – Missouri - St. Louis. Italia-America Club. United States National Championships: Open and Club Punto, Raffa, Volo. Contact Robert Della Croce @ 314-773-5574 (after 7:00 PM CST) or email


July 4, 2006 – California - Martinez - Open (Two person teams, four balls each. Each team’s players are stationed at opposite ends of the court). Contact Russ Calhoun @ 925-295-2003.


July 8, 2006 – California - Livermore - Campo di Bocce of Livermore. Open, 4 person teams. Contact Mario Veltri @ 925-437-5868.


July 8, 2006 - Massachusetts - North Andover. Massachusetts Senior Games (must be age 50 and above). Contact Mario Pagnoni @ 978-686-8679 or


July 14 - 16, 2006 - Ohio - Dayton. Bocce Classic XII at the John Pirelli Lodge will feature over 70 teams competing for over $7500 in prize money. This annual charity tournament will raise funds for the Ronald McDonald House of Dayton and the Dayton House of Bread. For entry information go to


July 15, 2006 - California - Fairfield - John Magnetti Memorial Tournament. Open Rules – 4 person teams - Fairfield Bocce Federation, 1200 Civic Center Dr. - Contact Richard Meccette @ 707-434-0190.


July 15, 2006 – California - San Jose. St. Frances Cabrini. Frank Guidace Memorial, ICF #191. Open, 4 person teams. Contact Betty Antuzzi @ 408-559-4268.


July 22, 2006 – California - Livermore. Campo di Bocce of Livermore. Punto, Raffa, Volo. Western Sector Championships, 3 person teams. Contact Ben Musolf @ 408-857-0074 or


July 29, 2006 – California - San Rafael. Marin Bocce Federation. Women’s Open, 2 person teams. Contact: Diana Pellegrini @ 415-485-5583 or


July 29 - 30, 2006 - West Virginia - Wheeling. Upper Ohio Valley Italian Festival Bocce Tournament. Visit for more info.

August 5, 2006 – California - Stockton. Italian Athletic Club - Open - Western Sector Championships, 4 person teams. Contact Ron Jacobs @ 209-957-1223 or


August 12, 2006 - California - Fairfield - AAU Senior National Championships, Open – 4 person teams. Must be age 55 and over - MUST HAVE ABA or AAU CARD. Contact Traci Peters @ 916-456-7169.


August 19, 2006 - California - South San Francisco - Women’s Tournament - Open – 4 person team - SO SF IACC Orange Ave. Mem. Park. Contact Rose Viscuso @ 650-871-7732.


September 10, 2006 - Colorado - Fort Collins - "Bocce for Meals" Tournament to raise funds for Meals on Wheels for Fort Collins. Open Rules. Contact Valerie DiBenedetto @ 970-232-3028


September 23 & 24, 2006 - Maryland - Baltimore. The Baltimore Italian Festival 2006. Contact Elio at

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