Where to Play Bocce Ball Around Philadelphia
Your guide to the courts, leagues and members-only spots for playing ball.
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The sport of bocce ball dates back to 5200 B.C., the approximate date it was depicted on the wall of an Egyptian tomb, according to the World Bocce League. It was then popularized by Italian Giussepi Garibaldi, before the first Bocce Olympiad was held in Athens, Greece in 1896. Despite its ancient roots, it’s only been in modern times that the U.S. has taken a liking to the sport.
Locally, Philadelphians have embraced the game — which involves underhand tossing balls towards a marker (the pallina), with a goal of landing as close as possible to it. Throughout the city, we’ve got a number of places to learn and play and grow our skill sets.
Ready to play ball? Here’s where to find courts in the city and beyond.
Where: 401 S. Columbus Boulevard, Society Hill
The bocce courts here are set between the seasonal boardwalk and the water. In the pre-COVID times, Major League Bocce played here on Tuesday nights, so keep an eye on their website for signs of a return.
Where: 1000 S. 10th Street, Bella Vista
The most well-known bocce spot in Philadelphia, Bardascino Park’s court is open to the general public, as long as there are no league games scheduled.
Where: 19 E. Oregon Avenue, South Philly
When South Bowl unveiled The Yard at South Bowl a couple years ago, they added plethora of new opportunities to have fun, including batting cages, horseshoes, an outdoor bar – and, of course, bocce. The bocce courts are available on a first come, first serve basis.
Where: 1025 Mifflin Street, South Philly
This community center added bocce courts in September 2017, and these days they’re open for public use. Call 215-685-0008 or email [email protected] for more info on availability and upcoming leagues.
Where: 2113 E York Street, Kensington
Pre-pandemic, this BYOB was one of our favorite places to play bocce. But while they’re waiting to return to indoor dining, the courts here have been overtaken with outdoor dining tables. While a plan for reopening the courts is TBA, we look forward to when they’ll return to their original purpose.
Tullytown Canal Park
Where: 240 Kenwood Drive S, Levittown
This park was opened to the public in 2017, giving locals access to its path, pavilion, and bocce ball courts.
Where: 1210 E Ridge Pike, Plymouth Meeting
A membership to this club is $10 per year, and bocce is offered indoors, making it a great place to get your bocce fix year-round.
Where: 9th & Grove Streets, Bridgeport
This league — which plays on recently resurfaced courts — runs through the summer and fall, and it’s $45 to play in the summer, $25 in the fall. You can sign up with some friends as a team on the Bridgeport Bocce Club website.
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Where: 1 Jeremiah Lane, Pittstown
Looking for a dreamy weekend date idea? Head to Beneduce for a wine tasting and some bocce ball on their outdoor court.