Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Buzz Bar Bands Beer and Boules - Wednesdays in Detroit

Adam Laurie
of The Buzz Bar in Detroit has set up a series of Wednesday night band sessions at Campus Martius Park running from 5-8pm until the end of August.

Adam saw the petanque club sessions during the noontime weekdays and invited the club, and anyone who plays petanque, to set up and play on the gravel pathways at Campus Martius Park (C-Mart).

There's a full Heineken sponsored bar at the park, so you can enjoy the mixture of bands, boules, and beer while working off the stress of a workday.

Look for me, I'll be to the right of the stage, near Au Bon Pain.

Petanque Boules used in a Louvre exhibition

The Louvre invited eleven artists to create works for it’s Richelieu sculpture wing in a third in its series of “Contrepoint” exhibitions. The statues are beautifully displayed in a courtyard filled with natural light from a glass-covered roof.

While some of the contemporary adaptations stand on their own without commenting much on the older work around them, others reflect and react to the Louvre’s collection in an illuminating way that opens our eyes to pieces we might have walked past without noticing.

Didier Trenet has decorated Corradini’s “Veiled Woman” with a watery cage made of copper tubing, beneath a metal can, with petanque boules pouring forth from a piece he has called: Douce Duche (“soft shower”).

The show admirably accomplishes its goal of getting us to give the Louvre a second look.

Chicago Petanque Club on Chicagoland Television (Video Link)

The Chicago Petanque Club was recently interviewed by Pogo of Chicagoland Television (CLTV) at Buckingham Fountain in Grant Park. Dan Danielson and other Chicago Petanque Club members gave a very clear demonstration of our sport as well as giving Pogo some hands-on training. It was a beautiful day, and with the famous fountain streaming in the background - I'll bet plenty of folks are now interested in checking petanque out.

You can view the video HERE

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Sunny Days in Cadillac Square - but with Ice Cream!

Leonard the Ice Cream Man biked into Cadillac Square to offer some cool sweet refreshments to the petanqueurs who played for 5 hours - while on the next block, a music festival was going on. Plenty of activity - people walking about, checking out the sport. We had loads of folks playing throughout the day; including: Deric T.; Patrick & Melissa A.; Cheryl D.; James H.; Mike D.; Jeff W.; Jeff G.; Tony T.; Aeisaa F.

The park looked wonderful, with it's spread of annuals, the breezes blowing; music in the air; and game after game of boule.

Hard Rock Cafe Detroit Petanque Doubles Tournament

Saturday - 25 August 2007 at 10:00 a.m. twenty doublette teams from Michigan, Canada, Chicago, Philadelphia, Alabama, Kentucky, and Ohio will meet in Detroit's Cadillac Square and compete for medals and Hard Rock Cafe prizes. Following will be a celebratory dinner gathering in our own party room at the Hard Rock Cafe. Registration includes everything!

The tournament is a guaranteed minimum 8 games per team with Top Tier and Consolante Finals.

Along with their prizes and medals, Top Tier Final and Consolante Final Teams receive their registration money back !

Friday, July 27, 2007

Boule Bag from Nicaragua

Ahhh the wonders of EBay... I just aquired this cool leather bottle carrier - and re-tasked it for carrying my boules to the petanque piste. It also has a handy case for measuring tape, coin tossing coin and cochonnet. And when playing triplettes, there's still room for a bottle of Pastis!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Petanque and the Compuware Corvette Pit Crew

Things were definitely roaring loud at Campus Martius Park this afternoon, with stock car pit crews giving displays of their fast tire changing amidst screeching, burning rubber corvettes and stock race cars.

Afterwards, the crew (about 10 guys in the yellow with checkered jerseys) watched us play some petanque.

Through it all, Wayne, Pat, Deric and Jeff played concentrated boule.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Boule is IN - Tour de France is OUT

Forgotten Tour de France

By John MorettiNew York Sun
July 23, 2007

ANTIBES - FRANCE - It was a rare sight these days: Two men having pastis at the bar and excitedly watching the Tour de France on television. They were clapping, even, when Tour leader Michael Rasmussen allowed Alberto Contador to pass him just before the finish line and win yesterday's stage. There had to be some sort of explanation for this odd behavior, and then it came as soon as the men started cheering — in Flemish.

It would take a lot, more than the recent doping inquiries and the ensuing suspensions and early retirements, to tear the Belgians away from their beloved cycling. The French, on the other hand, might be approaching that point quickly.

Once upon a time, well, even just two years ago, these same bars would be filled with gray-haired men clutching the sports daily, L'Equipe and nodding their heads in approval at every uphill attack. Not anymore. Even when the Tour passed through this corner of the hexagon last week, TVs in a few bars were tuned in to game shows. Yesterday, during one of the Tour's most critical stages, the natives were gathered in the park across the street, playing a game of petanque without even a radio to be heard.

"I just don't have time for it anymore," said Valerio Tomasino, as he crossed his legs on the park bench and watched an elderly man slowly crouch over the boules with a tape measure. "I used to watch all the mountain races and the time trials. This year, I haven't seen a single stage."

Monday, July 23, 2007

Detroit Petanque Club Gets Expert from Marseilles

Pat A., may not have been playing petanque for long, but boule is in his blood. His grandparents were major petanque players in Marseille years ago.

"They won all of their games," Pat boasted proudly, "and these were big money games. They even left me a set of boules which I plan to use to carry on their legacy."

With plenty of wins under his belt, Pat is well on his way to standing in the same circles as his relatives.

Today, teamed up with Mike D., he challenged Tim, Tom, and Jeff W. to a no-holds-barred match which ended in a 13/8 victory for Pat's team.

"When Pat finds himself in a squeeze - he doesn't crumble, but instead, turns up the heat by taking some risks - which usually result in a solid hit or point," woefully admitted Detroit Petanque club president, Jeff W. who was on the losing team today.

Check out Pat's boule stance, and challenge him and the others at the petanque games held each weekday (12-1pm) at Cadillac Square Park (right next to Campus Martius Park).

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Iron Mike is a Reliable Player

Always coming to the matches early, and last to leave, Mike has been a very dedicated player to petanque. I think he'll soon be beating us all.

Dan C., the patient coach

Whenever a new player to petanque enters the scene, Dan will always lend some good advice on the types of throws to be made.

Little Arrow Points in Nicely

a new player to the club, Little Arrow has made some nice progress today. She has taken up some pre-throw rituals which seems to steady her concentration and makes for some very close pointing.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Lost in Brooklyn

Not just petanque games were lost in Brooklyn, there were some other things as well. Namely, Philippe Boet's digital camera with hundreds of photos in the memory of the entire Bastille Day weekend, as well as Joe Z.'s cellphone which had hundreds of telephone numbers in it (probably 90% women) - kidding. So, if anyone back on Smith Street, or thereabouts sees a digital camera speaking in French, or a cellphone trying to shoot ... let me know!

Teaching Petanque in Albion, Michigan

Here are some great photos from Mark Anthony Arceno, taken during the petanque matches on French Day at Albion's Summer program run by Ms. Mueller.

While I have taught petanque to many adults over the years, never have I taught it to so many young adults. It was quite an experience, and everything went very smoothly.

Teaching to the 13 year olds was quite different from teaching to the 9 and 10 year olds. I also used different "petanque tools" for the younger children - one of which is a bright yellow golf ball in lieu of the cochonnet. I also placed down round rubber "placemats" for the younger kids to use as standing circles.

Ms. Mueller also hosted a group of visiting students from France who participated in the event. They assisted the students new to boule by showing them the different types of throws and strategy.

After a round or two, the kids really got into their games, being very friendly competitive and using the strategies learned from previous games.

At the conclusion of the day, I was invited into the school cafeteria where all of the students offered their thanks for the fun we had that day, and Ms. Mueller presented my with a bottle of Pastis from Marseille.

I really enjoyed myself that day, and after describing the event to the club members the following days, they too wish to participate the next time we're invited to Albion!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

BAR TABAC - 2007 Bastille Day on Smith Street in Brooklyn, NY

Joe Z. and Denise B. attended the Bar Tabac Bastille Day Petanque Tournament. Also playing was Ken C. in from Alabama with his girlfriend who also played. As you can see there is quite a bit of set-up for the event, with the street closed down, sand dumped in and raked out, 2 x 4's laid out in court grids, court numbering plates, along with countless other preparations (booths, score table, boule sales) - not to mention all of the surrounding shops offering food and french delicacies. The band played French music, and there was even a guillotine (for the losers?)