, Gloucester, MA


July 29, 2013

Editorial: City's bocce courts a good fit

Yes, with closed fire stations, street and sidewalk repairs awaiting state funding, and some key school decisions hanging in the balance, city officials frankly have higher priorities.

The installation of two new bocce courts at Stacy Boulevard is also a nice gesture to address the wants, if not needs, of a number of folks who can pass the time playing what is truly a classic game, and offers a bit of exercise for senior citizens as well.

Thanks to donated materials, the Department of Public Works was able to install the new courts at no hard cost to taxpayers, making it a worthwhile city project, with a nod to the city’s ethnic heritage to boot.

According to those at Friday’s rainy but still grand opening, the idea came from Ann Militello and a group of mostly Italian men who had gathered for years along the Boulevard. Jerry Ciaramitaro posed the idea to city councilors Joe Ciolino and Bob Whynott — both of whom turned out Friday, along with newfound bocce enthusiast Carolyn Kirk — and the idea took hold, after what Mayor Kirk referred to as a “bocce summit.”

Sitting adjacent to the tennis courts and Little League field, the bocce courts are a reminder that all of the city’s sponsored recreation need not be limited to youth.

Let the “boccino” fly — and let the games begin.

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