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The sport of bocce appeared alongside superstars such as The Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Killers and Jay-Z at the Austin City Limits Music Festival last month.
The annual music festival in Austin, Texas is a celebration of music over two consecutive weekends, and draws a crowd of nearly 500,000 music lovers each year. The inclusion of bocce outside the wine lounge and inside the artists’ area provided hundreds of festival-goers and musicians with the opportunity to enjoy a game of bocce between acts.
“The courts added a whole new dimension to the festival,” said Peter Norris, the Austin Territory Manager for the American Bocce Company.
The bocce games were played on unique inflatable ‘Packabocce’ courts created by Packaworld International. Conventional bocce courts are set in place and constructed from wood or stone, but Packabocce courts are portable and easy to set up quickly, allowing any flat area to be converted into a bocce court within 15 minutes.
In addition to Austin City Limits Music Festival, the American Bocce Company has also used the portable courts to run bocce at Chicago’s world-renowned music festival Lollapallooza.
Mr Norris said he was currently investigating options for creation of a bocce league in Austin, to be played weekly at a well-known local entertainment venue. Recent informal bocce nights he has organised at Austin venues such as Buffalo Billiards and Bufford’s Backyard Bar had proven popular, and it was clear that was an appetite for bocce in the city, he said.
“Bocce brings people from any walk of life together to compete and have fun. Some people come to socialise and enjoy the camaraderie. Others are competitive and come to kick butt. There are all sorts of ways you can look at it, but everyone’s here to have a good time.”
Founded in Chicago in 2013, the American Bocce Company has taken cities including Chicago, New York, Knoxville, Boston and Milwaukee by storm. It works with high-profile venues to present leagues, tournaments and corporate events, attracting thousands of players each year for bocce, beer and wine, good company and good times.
In addition to its famous leagues, the American Bocce Company regularly works on special initiatives to help the sport of bocce to grow. These range from partnering with Packaworld to introduce bocce to the luxury fleets of Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean and P&O Cruises to refereeing and support for Special Olympics competitions .
The American Bocce Company is planning to host large regional tournaments in the near future, including an invitational tournament in the spring.