Santa Cruz Lawn Bowls Club

137 Dakota Ave., Santa Cruz, CA 95060 Directions
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Opened in 1964 and completely resurfaced in 2007, the greens at Santa Cruz Bowls Club host lawn bowling, an outdoor sport lauded by the Santa Cruz Sentinal for the low-impact exercise it provides and its inherent tendency to foster community. Players fly solo or in teams of three atop the 120'x120' swathe of artificial turf, sliced into separate playing lanes and ringed with redwoods. Athletes exhibit focus and precision as opposed to brute force, carefully rolling bowls that, like buses containing both football players and water boys, are weighted on one side. To reach targets, players must carefully assess the terrain and speed with which they throw the spheres. Usually games encompass 14 rounds, or "ends," during which competitors take aim at a small white ball known as the "jack." The team or player that whirls the bowl closest to the jack, enlisting both forehand and backhand shots, seizes one point in a running tally that determines the recipient of glory. Club members enjoy unlimited access to the green and all necessary equipment, as well as club events that include bowling tournaments.

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