FPUSA Regionals Mixed Triples
Hosted by Fresno Petanque Club! 9-30-12

Ten Teams competed this year, and they were tough! The Concours Semifinals and Finals were both 12-12 finishes! They were exciting to watch and fun to cheer everyone on! Many thanks to the Fresno Petanque Club for their fabulous hospitality at Cary Park, and for the hard work in making this weekend event a joy in which to participate and compete!

Photos taken at the Cary Park
Event in Fresno, California

Our Champions! By, May, and Paul from
the FPC! The finals was a tough, close
game, a 12-12 with them finishing
victorious! What a show, well done!

Silver medalists, and wow, what a game the semi finals and the finals were for this team! So close!!! Ted, and Patrick from Fresno, Mary Jane from Oakhurst. — with Ted, Mary Jane and Patrick.

Bronze medalists! Yay Oakhurst & Los Angeles Petanque Club! Nicely done!! George Lewis, and Ron Lotton are from OPC, and Cathey Halley from LAPC. They had a great day! — with George Lewis, Cathey Halley and Ron Lotton.

1st place Consolante. Yep, we wound up in the Consolante! We had good games against the other 2 teams, and wound up with 1st. Oakhurst & Los Angeles were team DRAGON for this tournament! — with John Harris and Diana Jacobs at Cary Park.

Cousins medaling, very cool!! Congrats to
Mary Jane Mann and Cathey Halley!

Check our Schedule of Events and

Come Play Petanque with Us!

Thanks to FPUSA for the video!

Petanque is a fun, healthy activity for people of all ages. Youngsters appreciate the development of important hand-eye skills, middle-agers love the fresh air, using their aiming and tossing skills, and participating in the many social events tied in with a great day of Petanque. Senior Citizens, too, can play petanque - in fact, many of the U.S. and World Champions are in this group (although Juniors have National and World Championships too!). Petanque is a very welcoming sport for handicapped players as well as the game was developed with wheelchairs in mind!
(Read some history here)

With everyone from Oprah to Dr. Mehmet Oz encouraging us to "get outdoors and get healthy" the game of Petanque is tailor-made to help you do just that.

Oakhurst Petanque Club, located near Yosemite National Park, is proud of each of its 80 current members and visitors are always welcome to come play in our regular Saturday morning or Wednesday afternoon practice sessions, and members of the club can play in any Federation of Petanque USA events for which they qualify and are welcomed at any FPUSA club in the nation! See the other pages on our website for full information about our location, our people, and what fun we enjoy on a regular basis.

Anthony Bourdain of television's Travel Channel goes to France...and meets up with the hard realities of pètanque! Play the movie (below) and enjoy a good chuckle!

Watch in HD (720) and full screen!

Join Team Blue! Click Here for membership application

And this is only about half our 80 current members!

It's Easy to Play Pètanque!

All you need to do, on a Saturday morning, or Wednesday afternoon during the Daylight Savings Time part of the year, is show up! Everyone in our club is eager to meet new friends, especially those who might enjoy our common interest in this zany old French game.

Pètanque is so easy to learn, literally taking just minutes, and the scoring is easy, as well. What is not easy about the game is the way you become affected by wanting to learn all the things to help you play better games. After all: winning IS fun, and gradually you will come to know how to better your game by bettering yourself. Each time you step on the court to play, you can know that everyone else in the world who plays Petanque plays by the same basic rules.

Your first lesson will involve these points:

1. Generally a coin is flipped, or something is done to determine which team will shoot first. Within that team, it will also be decided (sometimes by a captain) who will be the first player. That player will draw a circle in the dirt, and should wipe out any circles from previous games which may lead to confusion. The circle should be a little larger than your (or anyone else's) two feet, and will stand in that circle and toss the coconnet (the little brightly-colored ball). Feet together now. And toss the "little one" somewhere between 6 giant-steps and 10 giant steps distance from your circle. (Giant steps refers to meters, the standard of measurement in Petanque worldwide. Oddly one 39-inch step is exactly a meter. If you practice it.)

2. If your captain agrees you'll also toss one of your two (if there are three on your team) or three (if there are two or one on your team) boules. The object is to plant it as closely as possible to the cochonnet. You've now had your "play" and it's time for the opposing team to toss. Their object, is to roll or toss a boule so it comes to a stop closer to the cochonnet than yours. If they cannot do it, they will keep shooting - and using up boules - trying to get closer than yours. OR the famed "carreau" might come in to play. It's perfectly honorable for the opposing team to take an aerial shot (carreau) at your ball to smack it out of contention. This of course would mean that whatever boule they have on the court would be the closest boule to the cochonnet, and, therefore, it would become your team's turn to play.

3. Back and forth, the teams jockey for the closest boules. Somebody's trying to get closer; somebody's trying to get even closer or to remove (smack!) offending boules of your team to make way for theirs.

4. The game is over when one team has expended all its boules.

5. All gather around the cochonnet to determine whose boule was closest - and that team will score a point. If another of their boules is second-nearest the cochonnet, then they'd have two points. But if your boule is the second closest, the counting stops: the opposition scores 1 point.

6. Now play moves to the opposite end of the terrain, and your opposition has won first shot. They will a. clear any previous circles from the area, b. draw a new circle and c. shoot the first boule of round two.

And so it goes until one team attains 13 points and wins the game.


Petanque is a great, and highly social game. The fun of the game carries over into the many social occasions which surround competitions, and generally food is what the players look for after a wonderful day of play. (Click the photo above to join the party!)

As a club having members with great personalities, our players slide very quickly from the heat of the games into socializing. Our potlucks and special occasions are frequent and well known! After all, don't we ALL like a nice reward from a hard day's competition?

Becoming a member of our club guarantees fun, excitement, and very, very special friends. Members can play any time they wish, in addition to our Saturday morning and Wednesday afternoon play. Come join us! We're right next door to the Boys and Girls Club of Oakhurst, and between the scenic Fresno River and Oak Creek. Here's more information.


After the loss of our beautiful London Plane tree to a hungry beaver (who apparently lacked the foresight to realize that there was no way to get the tree *out* of the OPC terrain), Jim Elliott and Manny obtained and planted three replacement trees. (Thanks again guys!) What we didn't realize at the time, was that the tree's will to survive would allow it to eventually regrow itself!(below) What started as a few suckers here and there, turned into a significant new trunk, and it now looks like the original tree is doing well, and on it's way to once again providing shade to the happy boulers!!

The second picture, below - although I wasn't able to get a very good shot of it - relates to the second of our "two rivers" namesakes.

Oak Creek, the normally-seasonal creek has dried up every year I've been at OPC, and so many of us this season have expressed sadness about the fish trapped in the pool of water under the bridge, as it gets smaller, and smaller. The creek stopped running during the summer as it always does, but this year, the combination of late and heavy rains and snow allowed the pool to hang in there until late September, when we had an early storm. The good amount of rainfall succeeded in restarting the creek, so the fish survived this year! What a treat!
Life goes on...

OPC Vice President

How it all began

Our Petanque Club had its beginnings during a Claude Monet-era-French-themed picnic hosted by Jan and Kathleen Claire, who wanted to introduce the game to Oakhurst. The picnic was held on June 4th, 1999 in their back yard in Oakhurst, California.

The picnic was attended by 65 artists, all friends of the Claires, who, along with their spouses and many close friends were not only treated to an atmospheric French "day in the country", but, for added atmosphere the hosts invited members of the Los Angeles Petanque Club to come show all the attendees how to play the French game of petanque and to teach us the game.

A petanque court was quickly constructed out of native gravel and dirt, and on the appointed day, guests arrived in their "Monet-era" costumery, some brought their paintings to exhibit in the shade of large mulberry trees, French tunes played in the background, and everyone enjoyed French foods.

Visiting from Los Angeles Petanque Club was its president, Max Legrand, his wife Gisele, and Steve Bush and his wife, the late Dolores, and LAPC members David and Carol Randle. The six of them were such affable teachers who stood out in the sun all day, and brought out the true fun of playing the game that the club formed spontaneously from the sheer joy of that event. All were amazed by the teachers' talents, and were equally astounded that we could actually accomplish the basics of the game and some pretty good shots, as well. On September 26th, 1999 the Oakhurst Group had a meeting at a local restaurant, electing officers, adopting bylaws and formally creating Oakhurst Petanque Club.

In our now 13 years, we have hosted visiting teams from Switzerland, Ireland, England, New Zealand, and individuals from other countries around the world stopping by to enjoy the dual fun of Petanque and visiting nearby Yosemite National Park. Since we are located in Oakhurst, California through which California Highway 41 takes visitors to Yosemite, we have wonderful visitors from all over the world dropping in on Saturday mornings to play.

In 2008 Oakhurst hosted the 'over 60 National Team' of New Zealand, a large contingent from throughout the island nation, but who play the same game, the same way. All over the world now, Petanque is a rapidly growing sport, particularly in Europe and southeast Asia where - in Singapore, Malaysia, Viet Nam, Laos and other nations playing petanque is a regular fact of life, as it has always been in France: a wonderful daily exercise.

This handsome lad above is our resident grey squirrel. We call him "Digger". He feels he "supervises" our terrains and has little fear of people. He does enjoy the unsalted peanuts we toss to him, and always appreciates any other handouts from club members.


© 2012, Oakhurst Petanque Club