Linear Bocce is an Indy Man remake of the classic lawn game


After his first try at traditional bocce in 2015, an Indianapolis native invented a new style of play.

INDIANAPOLIS – There’s a touch of Indianapolis on the bocce ball, and they hold a fundraising event This weekend.

In 2015, Indianapolis native Will Higgins invented a new style of bocce after trying the traditional game once. He decided to move the game off the grass and into a concrete driveway on the north side.

He calls it “linear pétanque”.

“It’s the exact same game, but on a bocce court you’re limited,” Higgins said. “It’s usually 60 feet long on a regulation pétanque court and it’s neat, it’s nice, it’s clubby. It’s wide open pétanque. As you can see, we’re in an alley. It’s bumpy, it’s unpredictable and there are no limits to it.”

This weekend they will hold the North American Linear Bocce Championships, starting in an alley at 42nd Street and College Avenue. This is the first event they have organized since 2019.

The event is great fun and open to everyone, but it also raises money for great causes.

“It’s a charity fundraiser and I’m taking player nominations as to which charity we should donate money to this year,” Higgins said. “People leave here feeling really good, and the fact that they’re actually helping a worthwhile organization, not us, gets something out of it. It just adds to that warm feeling.”

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To date, Linear Bocce has donated to organizations such as Second Helpings, Indy Reads, The Indy Public Library Foundation, The Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library, The Idle, and St. Mary’s Child Center. Since their inception in 2015, they have donated approximately $20,000.

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The only requirement for attendees this weekend is that they wear some kind of tie, such as a scarf or tie. The website states that “we basically scour people’s backyards, and if we look presentable, owners are less likely to call the police.”

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