Playing through the pandemic

COVID-19 has forced us to all think about the health and safety of ourselves and each other. We all want to play! We all wish it were not risky to be around others. However, the reality is that we simply must take every precaution. The CCPC Board has been through many hours of discussions and has solicited the input of our members. We’ve also been in contact with FPUSA and clubs around the country to get their best ideas and advice.

So, we have resumed our play dates and our members have been most cooperative, thoughtful, and careful. We wear masks at all times – nobody likes it but, we all know we must. We have changed rules and “relaxed” certain parts of the FPUSA rules in order to make this work. The games move more slowly as we must allow everyone a chance to collect their boules while maintaining at least 6 feet of separation. We wait because only one person in the game is allowed to move the ring. It’s tedious but, we are playing petanque!

With a close watch on keeping our distance, we can’t have triples games right now. We can’t use all 4 courts at Lay Park. In other words, we’ve been forced to limit the number of players who can play simultaneously to only 8 or 12. Some of us have to wait our turns to get into a game. Some of us have to sit out for a game. This, more than anything, really clobbers our long-standing policy of making sure that everyone can get into a game, without having to wait, and welcoming each player into a game as they arrive. It kills me to see any eager player just waiting for their chance to play! But, it is what it is, for now…

We have had to start using time limits on games. As more of our club members and guests begin to come out to play, we may have to have even shorter games. None of this is desirable but, probably necessary. We will get through this with your help and consideration. Please continue to make suggestions – we are always listening.

Allez CCPC!

Al Davison

Sports Director, CCPC

Carolina Petanque – Great news from our good friends!

Greetings:

2019 season is wrapping up and I would like to thank everyone for a great year!

Carolina Petanque in now the second largest club in the nation with an official number of 109 members; we have added a few members since the FPUSA census in September. In addition we are playing regularly at 7 locations which is more than the entire North East Region combined this gives our members more opportunities to play and more exposure for the sport. Carolina Petanque has been very successful in hosting official FPUSA tournaments and continues to offer additional competitions and events for our members elevating the club’s experience and competitiveness. Fortunately we also had two members on the USA national team at the World Competition in Cambodia in November. 

It has been a busy year and it looks like things are only going to get better in 2020!

The Carolina Petanque Board has bid on the following FPUSA Tournaments in 2020 and we have been given the following to host.

Mid America Select Triples April 26th at Asheville.

National Men’s Triples July 25 – 26 at Morganton

Women’s Triples World Qualifier July 25 – 26 at Morganton.

Mid America Men’s Doubles August 29 at Winston Salem

Mid America Women’s Double August 29 at Winston Salem

Mid America Mixed Double October 10 at Morganton

In addition to the FPUSA tournaments we have been discussing several other club/open tournaments though out the year and will send out information as we confirm dates and locations.

Note on the two National tournaments on July 25 -26. The men’s the team that wins this tournament will be the USA National Triples Team, however that does not mean that the FPUSA will send/sponsor the team to go to an international tournament 2021 but could be eligible to play if something comes up. The women’s team that wins the Women’s Triples World Qualifier will represent the USA at the World Championship in 2021. I have heard that it will be held in Thailand or New Zealand but it will not be finalized until sometime in 2020. If anyone has questions concerning the tournaments please send me an email.

In addition to tournaments in 2020 we hope that we are able to expand our locations to give more people the opportunity to participate in the sport in the Carolinas and build our membership to be the largest club in the nation.

What we need from you to make this a successful year is to renew your membership or sign up as a new member of Carolina Petanque. Currently we are awaiting the FPUSA to start taking memberships for 2020. I will send an email on how to renew or sign up when the time comes

Carolina Petanque will also need your help in 2020 volunteering at events and at the different locations expanding our player/membership base and keep Carolina Petanque growing. Without your efforts what has been accomplished and what can be is not possible. Thank you to everyone who has volunteered time, effort, and money to the club! It is greatly appreciated!

Finally this is a election year for Carolina Petanque and we need you to consider running for a position on the Board. All positions are open, President, Vice President, Secretary/Treasurer, and Sports Director. If you are interested in volunteering your time to serve on the Board I will explain in detail  what is required and what would be expected from holding a position. I will be taking nominations for officer positions until December 31. To nominate someone or to run for a position you must be a Carolina Petanque member. In January, Carolina Petanque will hold the election.

Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year to you and your family!

Kirk Edwards

Carolina Petanque President

Ten Basic Petanque Rules for Beginners

Allen has revised and created his condensed rules for beginners. It varies a little from his “Top Ten FPUSA Rules” that are designed for players heading into FPUSA competition. Many thanks, Allen!

 Ten Basic Petanque Rules for Beginners

When it’s your team’s turn to play

1. Placing the circle, throwing the jack, and playing the first boule: These functions are usually carried out by the same team player. If you are new to petanque, allow an experienced player to perform these functions while you watch and learn. When you’ve learned how to do these things, your team may ask you to do them.

2. Marking the circle: When you’ve advanced sufficiently to start an end, be sure to mark the circle, and mark it before you throw the jack.

3  Foot faults: Keep both feet entirely within the circle and keep both feet on the ground until your boule lands.

4. Playing a boule: After the last boule stops rolling, you will have one minute to plan and execute your next play. There are two main types of play: pointing, in which you just try to throw your boule as close to the jack as possible; and shooting, in which you try to knock away an opponent’s boule. While you’re learning the game, it’s best to just point.

5. Picking up the circle: If you have played the last boule of the end, pick up the circle, carry it to the other end, and drop it around or behind the jack where it will not disrupt the measuring of boules and the counting of points.

When it’s your opponent’s turn to play

6. After throwing and gaining the point: You and your teammates must immediately proceed to a valid standing area so that the opponents, now in their 1-minute time limit, have clear room to examine the situation and plan their next play.

7. Where to stand: Stand beyond the jack, at least 2 meters from the line of play, when an opponent is playing. The line of play extends beyond the jack, so you cannot stand on the other side of the jack in line with the opponent’s next throw. You may also stand behind the circle, but standing beyond the jack gives you a better view and prepares you to examine the results of your opponent’s throw and plan your next play. Just don’t stand between the circle and the jack. Stand still and don’t talk during the regulation time allowed for the opponents to plan and execute their next play. When a teammate is playing, you may stand anywhere you wish.

Behavioral rules

8. What to do: https://www.athenspetanque.org/ccpc-code-of-conduct/

9. What not to do: https://www.athenspetanque.org/ccpc-code-of-conduct/

10. Ultimate objective: HAVE FUN!

Visitors / Guests – how to introduce people to petanque

We have had a great many new faces at our CCPC club play days and we hope to have more. Here are some guidelines to help folks understand what’s a good idea and what’s not such a good idea as we continue to see many new faces showing up to see what this game is all about.

The most important thing to remember when introducing someone to the game is that you should emphasize that it’s simple and FUN! Nobody will care about all the nuances, rules, strategies, etc. if the game isn’t fun.

When someone comes out to try petanque for the first time or two:

  – make sure they have fun!   They came to play a game – not to have a lesson.

  – give them 2 minutes or less instruction and put them into a game

  – throughout the game, give them a very, very short tip or two on some occasions – never more than 1 tip per end

  – let them learn the rules through observation and asking questions; nobody needs to know all the rules on the first day

  – invite questions but don’t volunteer too much information;  petanque is fun but lectures are not

– Never forget that you’re in a game with other people, too. Everyone will welcome the new player and be happy to help but nobody will be happy if you are delaying the game with a long-winded explanation.

Tournament Season Recap

Members of CCPC had a wonderful 2019 tournament season! Those who participated from our club were Allen, Sally, Heidi, Al, Frank, Diane, Rob, Ron, Maliko, Gabbi, Gail, Honor, Marilyn, Ray, and Debbie. In some cases, our members teamed up with players from other clubs for the events. There are many photos on our Facebook page but, here are some of the highlights:

CCPC was represented at these FPUSA tournaments this season:

Atlanta Petanque League Regional Triples – 2 teams + 1 member

Asheville/Carolina Petanque Regional Triples – 2 teams

Winston-Salem/Carolina Petanque Regional Doubles – 1 team + 2 members

Morganton/Carolina Petanque Regional Doubles – 1 team + 1 member

Oh-La-La National Women’s Doubles – 2 members

Oh-La-La National Men’s Doubles – 1 member

Oh-La-La National Mixed Doubles – 3 members

Amelia Island Women’s Compact Double (not FPUSA) – 2 teams

Amelia Island Open (not FPUSA) – 5 teams + 1 member

As a result of all this traveling and competing, we made a ton of new friends and gained a lot of attention and respect in the wider petanque “family”. We have great relationships with members of many, many clubs around the country. While we may not have brought home any medals, we can proudly say that it was a smashing success! Now, a break from the traveling and the competitions until April 2020 – the Atlanta Petanque League’s FPUSA Select Doubles tournament. As much fun as we have at the tournaments, it will be nice to just play some social, casual, and fun petanque with our own club at our home turfs before we get ready to do it all again in 2020 with many more of our CCPC members planning to compete!

New CCPC equipment!

We now have a proper rake! The Board approved the purchase of a new landscaping rake that we can use to smooth and groom the terrains without digging in and pulling up the big pieces of gravel underneath the playing surface. The “trick” is to only use the flat side – never the teeth. While too much grooming is still discouraged, we can now groom and smooth in the correct way to keep our courts the nicest in Georgia.

We have circles! The Board also approved the purchase of 4 new Obut circles that we were able to purchase at a discount and without paying for shipping while we were participating in the Amelia Open tournament.

Ten Critical FPUSA Rules

Our very own Club Umpire, Allen Cassady, has released a revised version of his famous “Ten Critical Rules”. This is a wonderful synopsis of what you should know about how to play the game.

Ten Critical FPUSA Rules

(10/22/19)

When it’s your team’s turn to play:

1. Filling a Hole: When it’s your turn to play, you or a teammate may smooth one hole made by a previously thrown boule. You may not smooth a ball track, remove or stamp down an obstacle, sweep in front of your target boule, or smooth an area as a landing spot.

2. Marking the Circle: Mark the circle before you throw the jack. In an umpired game, failure to mark the circle can result in a yellow card warning for the first violation and disqualification of a boule for the second violation, though an umpire may just caution you informally for the first violation and save the yellow card for the second violation.

3. Foot Faults: Keep both feet entirely within the circle; keep both feet on the ground until your boule lands.

4. Time Limit: Take no more than one minute to throw your boule after the opponent’s throw has landed and stopped. If a measurement is required, the one minute begins when the measurement is decided. However, if time is taken to examine the situation prior to the measure, that time will be deducted from the one minute allowed.

5. Jack Knocked Out of Bounds: If your throw knocks the jack out of bounds, pick up the circle and carry it to where the jack had been marked so that it may be placed around the mark; or, if the jack had not been marked, place the circle where the jack went out of bounds. Apply the rules for counting points when the jack is dead. The team that was the last to score throws the jack to start a new end.

6. Picking Up The Circle: If you have played the last boule of the end, pick up the circle, carry it to the other end, and drop it around or behind the jack where it will not disrupt the measuring of boules and the counting of points. Remember that you are not necessarily the player responsible for the correct placement of the circle—that is the responsibility of the team that won the end and is usually performed by the player who will throw the jack.

7. Placing the Circle: If you are throwing the jack to begin a new end, place the circle around the jack where it ended up in the previous round or, if you choose, step back the circle to give you room to throw the jack the maximum allowable distance. The jack doesn’t have to be in the center of the circle, just within it.

8. Measuring: The team that just played makes the first measure, then the other team may measure. Don’t intrude on the opponent’s measure. If you have doubts concerning their decision, wait until they step away, then step forward and make your own measure. For this purpose, each team must have appropriate measuring instruments. At minimum, each team should have a 2m or longer tape measure. In addition, a 1m folding measure with a sliding extension is highly recommended. If an umpire is called to measure, players must stand at least 2 meters away while the umpire is measuring.

When it’s your opponent’s turn to play:

9. After Throwing and Gaining the Point: You and your teammates must immediately proceed to a valid standing area so that the opponents, now in their 1-minute time limit, have clear room to examine the situation and plan their next play.

10. Where to Stand: Stand beyond the jack, at least 2 meters from the line of play, when an opponent is playing. The line of play extends beyond the jack, so you cannot stand on the other side of the jack in line with the opponent’s next throw. You may also stand behind the circle, but standing beyond the jack gives you a better view and prepares you to examine the results of your opponent’s throw and plan your next play. Just don’t stand between the circle and the jack. Stand still and don’t talk during the regulation time allowed for the opponents to plan and execute their next play. When a teammate is playing, you may stand anywhere you wish.

Allen Cassady – Club Umpire!

Allen Cassady traveled to Morganton, NC (the site of the tournament) and met up with Gary Jones (National Umpire, Carolina Petanque) and passed both his written and practical tests to become certified by FPUSA as a Club Umpire! Congratulations Allen! We’re all quite proud of you! Here is Allen’s version of the story:

As some of you know, I’ve been pursuing an FPUSA umpire certification. I took the exam yesterday in Morganton, NC, under National Umpire Gary Jones. I passed the exam and will now be certified as an FPUSA Club Umpire, effective January 1.

“Club Umpire” is the entry level of FPUSA umpiring. The next higher levels are “Regional Umpire” and “National Umpire.” A Club Umpire is authorized to officiate alone at club level events, but not at FPUSA sanctioned regional and national events, where a Club Umpire would serve as an assistant umpire under an experienced higher-level umpire. To qualify for the next higher level of Regional Umpire, I will have to serve at least three years as a Club Umpire, officiate in a minimum number of events, be nominated by an FPUSA official, and pass the Regional Umpire examination.

The Club Umpire examination consisted of a written test of 25 multiple-choice questions and a practical test to demonstrate measuring ability, included the requirement to measure with one knee on the ground. Gary set up a number of jack and boule situations that tested the ability to measure with four different measuring instruments–calipers, folding rule with extension, 2m tape measure, and 10m or longer tape measure. I passed all of those tests.

On the 25-item written examination, I answered 24 correctly, missing on one. I had concentrated my studies on the playing rules and answered all playing rule questions correctly, but tripped up on one of the administrative rules. The question I answered incorrectly dealt with who must approve when two teams assigned to a specific terrain for their game want to switch to a different terrain. I reasoned that because the organizing committee assigned the terrains, any change must be approved by the organizing committee. But the correct answer was “the umpire.”

The one requirement left is that I must have been an FPUSA member for two years. I will complete that requirement on January 1, when the FPUSA Sports Director will send me my Club Umpire certificate and badge.

Thanks to all of you who had to tolerate my one-knee-on-the-ground practice measurements.

Regards,

Allen

Allen and Heidi representing Classic City Petanque in Morganton, NC