The Ballater Boules Challenge will, this season, celebrate its 10th season of guaranteed fun, friendship and fresh air.
These ingredients have always been available to any player attending one of the meetings totally free of charge!
It was introduced originally in 2005 to offer an alternative to the fast disappearing traditional winter pastime of curling in Ballater owing to changing weather conditions during the colder months.
A spokesperson said: ‘‘The simple game of boules is enjoyed throughout the world, usually in warmer climes than Ballater Boules can offer especially during the winter months which is when we play.
‘‘However, we do have the use of the Monaltrie Park Pavilion and allow for plenty of opportunity to enjoy a warming cup of tea or coffee between rounds.
Our meetings are held fortnightly on a Sunday from late October through to early April each year.
‘‘The last 10 years really have been a success story for this unexpected winter pastime on Royal Deeside and we are extremely proud of this achievement from small beginnings to now an average of 40 players at each meeting. It is always best to remember that we operate the very simple and uncomplicated guide ‘Ballater Boules, Ballater Rules’
‘‘Importantly, we strongly encourage the participation of both ladies and gents as the game of boules happily accommodates both on an equal footing. Teams of two can be made up of ladies, gents or ladies and gents. If you have no partner then one will always be found for you, no equipment required at all as this will be provided plus a short introduction to the game before commencing play.
‘‘There is no joining fee and no obligation to attend on a regular basis, the invitation is not restricted to Ballater residents, surrounding villages are most welcome to take part.
‘‘ The first meeting of our 10th season begins this Sunday, October 26 (BST ends 2am) at 10.15am for a 10.30am start. If it is your first visit, please arrive around 10am in order that a short ‘teach in’ can be arranged before start of play. Don’t forget to wrap up warm for we play in virtually all weather conditions.’’
Meeting dates are displayed in Alistair Cassie’s Emporium and Yules’ Newsagents in Bridge Street, and The Phoenix Fish & Chip Shop, Viewfield Road, Ballater.
Our motto of ‘Fun, Friendship’ & ‘Fresh Air’ is most definitely guaranteed to all who attend.