BocceBrookE, the annual Voorhees bocce championship, will take place this year on Saturday, May 21, in Kirkwood Park.
Sixteen teams, each representing a distinct Voorhees neighborhood, will participate in a single-elimination tournament that will begin at noon and culminate in a championship game to begin at approximately 6 p.m.
Organizers expect the most intense competition to date, because returning will be representatives from every past championship team. The Carriagebrooke Hawks (Leon and Linda Trevito, Anthony and Diane Napoli), two-time champion The Carriagebrooke Tornado (Jude and Valerie Brown, Hizzoner Mike and Mary Pat Mignogna), and reigning and repeat champion Carriagebrooke Vino Puro (Bill, Elaine and Emily Maffucci, Ron Arculeo and Dominique Danielle).
Also, the only championship team in tournament history from a neighborhood other than Carriagebrooke, The Woodbrook Nuts (Joe and Fran Centurione, Rich and Cheryl DiTaranto) will be in attendance.
Finally returning will be reigning MVPs Denise Piscitelli (playing this year on The Elm Tree Farms All Stars, with her husband, Mark) and Ryan Jenter (of The Devonshire Wildfire, with his wife, Christine, and Bob and Trish Lancaster) and past Pat Schmus (Carriagebrooke/Sturbridge Squirrels, with her husband, Bob, and Larry and Amy Luongo), and Patty Graves (joining Bill Graves and the Piscitellis of Elm Tree Farms All Stars).
Not to be overlooked are several returning powerhouse squads. The Carriagebrooke Ducks (Jim and Terry McCreesh, and Mike Dieckmann, and his lovely wife, fireballer Stephanie Jacovini), The Devonshire Dawgs (Ernie and Patty Leone, George and Lisa Halbruner, and Henry and Loretta Katkow), Echelon’s Grand Fanellis (the Fanelli family: Tom, Denise, Laura, and Tommy), The Echelon Saints (Tom, Ashling and Grace Ehrhardt, Stephanie Wisdo, and Kurt Raatz), The Estates at Main Street Apple Tree (Michael and Lynne Cona, Mike and Mari Kehoe, and Reese and Kathy Bogle), The Sturbridge Lakes Japanese Maple Tree, Dave and Terry Bongiovanni, Bob and Liz Patterson, and secret weapon Carl Tierney), and The Sturbridge Blues (John Sr., John Jr. and Nick Daddario, and Mark LeChevallier).
Rounding out the field will be two newcomer teams that have greatly impressed the scouts. The Carriagebrooke Giants (Jay, Barb and Jacob O’Connell, Chuck Hague, and Greg “Wild Thing” Maffucci) and The Acorn Hill/Alluvium Winged Beavers (Michael and Jaime Friedman, Len and Gina Lewis).
BocceBrookE was inspired by Il Palio, a twice-yearly neighborhood-versus-neighborhood horserace held twice yearly in Siena, Italy. There are no horses in BocceBrookE, but each team will be represented in The Running of the Provolone, a footrace around Kirkwood Park that will determine the order of play and other tournament details.
Admission is free, and spectators are welcome. They are also encouraged to pack picnics and to bring folding or collapsible chairs and tables.
For more information, contact Bill Maffucci, Il Capo di Bocce, at firstname.lastname@example.org.