A Busy July

Jim Knapp painted the French tricolor flag on his boules for July's annual Bastille Day Tournament. (photo by Kathy Sowers)
Jim Knapp painted the French tricolor flag on his boules for July's annual Bastille Day Tournament. (photo by Kathy Sowers)

The Club has wrapped up a busy July and returned to regular Wednesday-Saturday play while looking forward to participating in OVA’s Join a Club Night on September 28 and to the next tournament, Oktoberfest, on Saturday, October 16.

The annual Bastille Day tournament, celebration, and potluck were a grand success with brilliant weather and a great turnout. Festivities also included celebration of the Club’s 25th anniversary as a recognized Oakmont organization,
The Club also hosted a successful Grandparents’ Week session for the first time. Volunteers enjoyed introducing four grandsons to the game. They learned very quickly and had a good time playing along with the adult volunteers and then in teams against each other.

The Roster continued to grow in July, adding both veteran Oakmonters and also some of the many new Oakmont residents who have dropped by to observe and then join in play.

PÉTANQUE IN THE UK – WHO KNEW?
Along with the U.S. and Canada, the United Kingdom is experiencing an explosive growth in both recreational players and club members. To be sure, it’s more likely that cricket, lawn bowls, soccer, and rugby come more quickly to mind when thinking about British sports. But pétanque clubs – often called “boules” clubs in Great Britain, are literally everywhere. Boules courts are very frequently included in the sports complexes that host clubs of the other sports.
There are 116 international pétanque federation-affiliated clubs in England, 14 in Wales, 17 in Scotland, and one in Northern Ireland – 148 U.K. clubs compared to 52 federation clubs in the United States. As always, the number of recreational players, which can only be estimated, dwarfs the number of dues-paying club members.
Equally surprising, though, is how long pétanque has been popular in Britain even if somewhat “below the radar.” For example, the celebration of a 30th anniversary match between Epping Forest District Councilors and Town of Epping Councilors recently made the news when the results of the annual 2021 match brought the overall record to a 15-15 tie.

PÉTANQUE IN OAKMONT WEDNESDAY & SATURDAY
The Club encourages all Oakmonters who may be interested in playing or learning to play pétanque (pay-tonk’) to come to the courts (between Berger and the OVA offices beside the Shuffleboard courts) at 9:45 am on the Club play days of Wednesday and Saturday. We have boules to lend, the game is easy to learn, and you’ll be playing right away. Anyone interested, regardless of experience, is welcome to join in. No dues are required – just sign up to be on the Club roster. Club play days are casual friendly games with teams randomly assigned. The courts are also reserved 10 am – noon for Club player-arranged pickup games on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

The potluck picnic lunch following the Bastille Day Tournament was a big hit.
Four grandsons participated in the Club’s first hosting of a Grandparents’ Week session. (Photo by Julie Kiil)

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