Santa Paula Times

34 teams signed up for the Corporate Games Bocce Ball tournament this past Sunday at Limoneira Ranch. Above, the Teradyne team competes during the games. (Photo by Don Johnson)

Bocce Ball kicks off Corporate Games

April 08, 2009
Santa Paula News
One of the world’s oldest sports, which is also one of the nation’s fastest growing, kicked off this year’s Ventura Corporate Games last Sunday with a bocce ball tournament at the Limoneira headquarters ranch in Santa Paula. The tournament, comprised of four-person teams, was open to all comers, from novices to experts.“As usual, the Corporate Games offers everything from bowling to darts to poker, so we’re really excited that Limoneira has given us the opportunity to add bocce to the mix,” says Elena Brokaw, Ventura’s Community Services Director. “We think it’s going to be a huge hit and a future staple of the Games. Once people play it, they’ll be hooked.”Bocce dates to the Punic Wars in the third century B.C., when soldiers used a small stone, called a “leader,” and threw it onto the ground some yards ahead, then tried to land larger stones closest to the leader. Today, the 1.75-inch leader is called a palladino, and the balls that players try to land close to it are called bocce.34 teams signed up to play in the tournament. All participants received a JD Probasco Spirit Award, named for the young man who lived so well and courageously before his untimely passing.Visitors and spectators were welcomed. A large plateau above the courts offered a splendid area for alfresco dining, snacking, and socializing.Limoneira’s 12 easily-accessible courts, which are open year-around for groups and individuals, conform to strict regulations issued by the bocce’s governing body.“I first got into bocce some years ago, when I was living in Italy,” says Harold Edwards, chief executive of Limoneira Company. “It’s the kind of game you don’t even have to be good at to have a lot of fun. Besides, the setting of our courts is so beautiful, nestled among the lemon and avocado groves with the mountains in the background, everybody wins.”
Winners were:Division AA - Naval Base Ventura CountyDivision B - TeradyneDivision C - Mission ProduceDivision D - Limoneira