The bocce courts are open to the public daily, except on Monday, when the club is closed. Generally there are enough players on hand to make a game and reservations are not necessary.

History of Bocce

Bocce is an ancient game. Some authorities claim it originated in Egypt about 5200 B.C., while other believe it was first played in Greece during the 6th Century B.C. The most reliable sources agree that Bocce, as we know it today, was played between battles during Rome’s Punic wars against Carthage which started in 264 B.C. Currently, bocce is played world wide in three different styles. Open Rules bocce is mostly played in the United States. It is an easy style to play with just a few simple rules. The other two styles of bocce are played all over the world and have world championships. These two styles are Punto, Raffa, Volo and Volo.

Punto, Raffo, Volo is played with a composition ball like Open that is 920 grams and 107mm in diameter. Raffa, as it is commonly called, has many technical rules and is more skilled game than Open. Each ball played is marked on the court when it comes to rest so that it came be replaced if a player moves a ball more than 70 cm or hits the wrong ball when shooting Raffa or Volo.

The game of volo is played with an entirely different ball. It is played with brass balls and the size and weight of balls is not uniform. Most often, players will use a ball smaller and heavier than composition balls. Also, there are lagging and shooting balls. A shooter will select balls with rubber bands inside of them to reduce the amount of bounce so balls will not bounce over targets when thrown. There is no center line in volo and the game is played in a five meter box two and a half meters from the end of the court. When wanting to shoot out an opponent’s ball, the ball must be thrown through the air and land within a 50mm arc before the target to be valid.

The Stockton-Waterloo Gun and Bocce Club hosted the 1985 National Championships. The playing surface of the original bocce courts was made up of clay and oyster shells. it took a great amount of time and effort to maintain these types of courts; so, in 1996, concrete was pour into each court and a polyurethane coating was applied as a topping. All three styles of bocce can be played on this surface.