They arrived on the Explorer of the Seas, walked along Dallas Rd. and through the park to our club. “They” are 4 generations of dedicated family croquet players from all over the US who have travelled the world to play croquet and today we were happy to welcome them to the Victoria Lawn Bowling Club.
It all started in 1990. Sometime before that Jack and Grace Galloway moved into a new home in Santa Monica California. Their neighborhood greeters were Marcy Pine and her husband. They all became good friends and have remained so for 53 years.
Sadly Jack passed away but they continue with their croquet travels. Jack and Grace started it all and soon the couples travelled together, playing first for 3 years in Linwood NJ. They got really serious about this and acquired a cup which they named the British Virginia Drink Open. In the following years, they have played, among many stops, in St. Petersburg, Florida, Mexico, Hawaii, the Bahamas, Florence Italy, and Kruger National Park in Africa, each of the 28 years playing in a different location. They are a dedicated bunch because in Florence, they rented a house, cleared an area of small rocks and played croquet on the hill. When their son got married in Boca Raton, they played croquet at his wedding.
As you might have guessed, their family has expanded. So today, at our club, the 4 generations of the family played 9 wicket 6 ball croquet. They told us that this was the best court and the most beautiful place they have ever played. They wear special caps to signify where they are from. The yellow caps are from Michigan; the blue ones from Florida; the green ones from Denver Colorado; the orange ones are the original players; and I am sorry to say the writer missed discovering the pinks. The group even have an order of play – green hats play black balls, pink hats play red balls, yellow hats play yellow balls, and the orange hats are the extra players.
They are on a cruise to Alaska via Seattle. It was a real pleasure to host them and welcome them to our fair city. We wish them many more years of this excellent adventure.
Photos courtesy Bonnie Vivier