A Fun Game of Throwing Skill
The Pétanque complex at Cypress Cove consists of six courts and two large shelters with picnic tables, near the golf cart rental shop. Games are scheduled for two different times daily, and informal games are welcome at any time.
Pétanque is easy to learn, and fun to play. There's a target ball, called a “jack,” and two teams get points by throwing steel “boules” that are closer to the jack than the closest opponent boule. Skill helps, but so does luck. You can be ahead for a while, yet behind a second later. Nothing is decided until the last player plays the very last boule. If that last boule moves the jack or knocks an opponent boule out of the way, the layout of the boules - and thus your score - may change dramatically.
Four of the six courts are “Soft Courts” that have a thicker sand layer that slows the boules. The other two courts are “Hard Courts” with a thinner sand layer that lets the boules roll farther. The game is the same on both types of court, but the playing style and strategy are slightly different on the hard courts.
If you’re looking for a fun activity that requires minimal exertion, come and join us!
Pétanque for Bocce players
If you’ve played bocce, then you’ll find it easy to adapt to pétanque. The concept and scoring are almost identical. Pétanque uses smaller but heavier steel boules, and the jack is smaller as well. The throwing motion in pétanque is usually palm down to put a backspin on the boule, and the pétanque throw is normally a higher arc than bocce’s bowling motion. But you can throw the boule in whatever way is most comfortable for you.
New players are welcome
New guests and residents are welcomed with open arms. If you’ve never heard of pétanque, we welcome you to stop by at one of the scheduled times to try the game, or just to watch. Loaner boules are available in the cabinet at the courts, and a summary of the game rules is posted on the bulletin board there. Free lessons are available.
There are scheduled games every day at 9:30 AM and 2:00 PM during the winter season (usually November through April). During the summer season (April through October), the only scheduled game is at 9:30 AM, although informal games sometimes take place at other times. Players assemble at the pétanque pavilion just before game time, and there is a card draw to assign players to teams. Players of all levels are welcome. We play two games, no matter which team wins the first game. The losing team rakes the court after each game.
Free instruction is offered to beginners at any of the scheduled times. There are usually fewer people playing at the afternoon sessions if you prefer to learn in a smaller group.
Special Pétanque Events
During the winter season, when more people are playing pétanque, we have many special events, including a competitive tournament, a competitive league, and two just-for-fun tournaments. We also hold several potluck lunches and cocktail events before or after playing pétanque. Details on these events are posted on the bulletin board at the pétanque pavilion.
We look forward to meeting you at the Pétanque Courts!