Bocce Ball Tournament
Saturday, September 16, 2017 in Glidden Park
A Little history of Bocce Ball in Collinsville By Clifton K. Dellamano
People spell it boccie, bocci or bocce, depending on which part of the state they’re from. Around these parts, it’s spelled bocce.
Bocce is a sport closely related to ancient games played in the Roman Empire that developed into its present form in Italy. The Italians have played bocce for centuries and it’s one of the oldest games know to mankind.
The size of the bocce is 3 ½” to 5”. The boccino is about 2 ½”. No lead-filled or metal ball is allowed in a tournament. In Italy, they play in a court, here in Collinsville, we play cross country.
The first bocce ball tournament held in the United States occured in Springfield, IL in August 1939. The first Collinsville Italian Fest was organized by Joe Ashmann and held on Columbus Day, October 1984. That year, the bocce tournament was held where the Collinsville Memorial Library parking lot stands today. The teams competing for first and second place got caught in a thunder storm, but continued to play. It turned cold that October, and everyone was on the porch of Ciuferi’s Funeral Home. Joe Ashmann brought a big pot of chili down, which went over well.
The tourmanet was held there for two years. The third year, the tournament moved to the Jung Brothers Pontiac lot. Rain delayed the tournament the fourth year, but it was held the following week at the American Legion. The tournament then moved to the high rise home on Aurora Street, until the tournament outgrew that site and was relocated to Woodland Park for a couple of years. The games finally ended up in Glidden Park, where they are still held today.
Bocci Rules (Illinois State Rules)
Winner of coin toss throws the Boccino (small ball) within 20-30 yards (60-90 feet).
If ball does not reach 20 yards, or goes past 30 yards, the Boccino is thrown again.
If this happens a second time in a row, the Boccino goes to the other team.
You are allowed two steps in any direction from where the Boccino was thrown.
First team to 12 wins!
Bocce BallBocce Ball
Bocce Ball Tournament Winners
1984: Lou Bazzello and Frank Vivod
1985: Buster Barbaris and Fritz Zamboldi
1986: Tony Baima and Lou Bazzello
1987: Dennis Pace and Gene Catalpa
1988: Clif Dellamano Sr and Dennis Carroll
1989: Crevits and Merritt
1990: Pat Chiarottino and Art Shad
1991: Pete LaFrank and Jim Bordoni
1992: Bill Thomas and Ford
1993: Locopo and Locopo
1994: George Cavaletti and Frank Hann
1995: Crevits and Morris
1996: Frank Italiano and Ben Mansfield
1997: Paul Benvenuot and Jim Rocca