Springfield’s
first bocce and beer garden!

This downtown playground features an outdoor bar, two bocce courts, four bags game sets, fire pits in appropriate weather, the K9 Social Club where your dogs can play while you do, and best of all… direct access to the FRESHEST and FINEST brews in the area from Obed & Isaac’s Microbrewery and Wm. Van’s Coffee House.

To find out about our bocce leagues, email the commissioners here.


ABOUT THE GAME


Bocce is an ancient game, whose modern adaptation most closely resembles bowling. It requires skill, strategy, and just a little luck.

Throwing balls toward a target is the oldest game known to mankind. According to primitive graphite drawings, the Egyptians played a form of bocce as early as 5000 B.C. While bocce today looks quite different from its early predecessors, the unbroken thread of bocce’s lineage is the consistently common objective of trying to come as close to a fixed target as possible. From this early objective, the basic rules of bocce were born.

From Egypt the game made its way to Greece around 800 B.C. The Romans learned the game from the Greeks, then introduced it throughout the empire. The Roman influence in bocce is preserved in the game’s name; bocce derives from the Vulgate Latin bottia, meaning boss.


In modern times, the first bocce clubs were organized in Italy. Notably the first Italian League was formed in 1947 by fifteen teams in and around the town of Rivoli (Torino). 1947 also marks the beginning of the yearly Bocce World Championships.

Thanks to many Italian immigrants at the turn of the century, bocce has come to flourish in the United States. During its beginnings in the U.S. there were as many versions of the game as there were towns the immigrants had left. Bringing some order to the game is the Collegium Cosmicum ad Buxeas, the preeminent bocce organization headquartered in Rome, Italy.


THE BASIC RULES OF BOCCE



Equipment


A set of bocce balls : consisting of eight large bocce balls (half of which are of a different color or pattern) and a smaller "object ball" (sometimes called a "pallino" or a "jack")



Playing Surface


The playing surface should be reasonably flat and level and can consist of packed dirt, fine gravel or short grass. While some prefer to play on a manufactured court, a gravel driveway or backyard make acceptible playing surfaces.


Players


The game is played with two teams; each team can have one, two, or four players

  • Four Player Team - each player throws one ball
  • Two Player Team - each player throws two balls
  • One Player Team - player throws all four balls


Object


The object of the game of bocce is for one team to get as many of their balls closer to the pallino than the opposing team's closest ball.



Play

 The toss of a coin determines which team will start. The starting team chooses which color (or pattern) ball they will play with. The first team member throws the pallina and then rolls his/her first ball as close to the pallino as possible. It is now up to the opposing team to roll a ball closer to the pallino than the starting team.


If the opposing team uses all four balls and fails to get closer to pallino than the starting ball, the starting team rolls each of their remaining balls, trying to place them closer than the opponent's closest ball.


However, if the opposing team succeeds in placing one of their balls closer to the pallino, the starting team must then roll again to attempt to get closer or "better the point". Each team continues to roll until it beats the point of the opposite team.


While the object is to get close to the pallino, it is permissible for a player to roll his/her ball as to knock an opponent's ball away from the pallino. Likewise, a player may knock or move the pallino toward his/her own team's balls. The pallino is playable anywhere on the playing surface.


Scoring

When all balls have been played, this concludes the frame and ONE team is awarded one point for each of its balls which is closer to the pallino than the closest opposing team's ball. Thus, a team may score up to four points per frame. If the closest ball of each team is equal in distance from the pallino, NO points are awarded. The team that scores in a frame starts the next frame by throwing out the pallino and playing their first ball. Play continues until a team wins by reaching a score of sixteen points.

 

 

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