Eight Ridgefield locals, also known as The Ridgefield 8, will compete to break the Guiness World Record title for the longest marathon playing bocce team.
The Ridgefield 8 are gearing up to top the previous record of 32 hours and four minutes. The charity bocce marathon game begins Friday, June 21 at 7 a.m. at the bocce court at Ancona’s Wines & Liquors parking lot (720 Branchville Road, Ridgefield). The team plans to break the record at approximately 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 22. The family event will offer music, food, refreshments and bounce castles for the kids beginning at 2 p.m. on Saturday.
“We love Ridgefield, we love the game of bocce and we are a competitive group of guys, which is why we are excited to break the Guiness World Record title for the longest marathon playing bocce team. title for longest marathon playing bocce team,” said Mark Blandford, Ridgefield resident for 14 years and Ridgefield 8 team member. “It will be physically demanding, however we are all committed to doing this, and we are asking the community for support by coming to the game and cheering us on so we can make Ridgefield proud and raise important funds for our amazing town.”
The competition comes with a cause.
The Ridgefield 8 are raising money to support two important local charities: The Boys & Girls Club of Ridgefield and Ridgefield Operation for Animal Rescue (ROAR).
“We are extremely grateful to the Ridgefield 8 team for thinking of the Boys & Girls Club and generously allowing some of the donations of the bocce competition to go directly to helping the young people of Ridgefield achieve a great future,” said Mike Flynn, executive director of the Boys & Girls Club. “Good luck to the Ridgefield 8 and we will be there with our volunteers to cheer you on during the marathon game!”
The Ridgefield 8 — Mark Blandford, Bill Diamond, Chris Forsyth, Brendan Kenny, Jeff Levi, Kyle Morehouse, Kristian Ording and Mike Rosella — have to play for the entire time and are allowed only a five-minute break every hour, which they could save and stack into longer breaks.
To abide by the Guiness World Record title for the longest marathon playing bocce team, it will take more than eight bocce players to pull off the marathon bocce game. Volunteers are needed to serve as witnesses and referees, along with helpers to keep the team fed and hydrated throughout the event. 
Anyone interested should contact Jennifer Forsyth at jena1010@gmail.com to offer your time in support of this event. 
For more information and to make a donation, please visit www.ridgefield8.com.
“Bocce is one of the world's oldest sports and is a great way to bring a community together,” said Rudy Marconi, First Selectman, Ridgefield. “It is going to be a challenge for the Ridgefield 8 but I have no doubt that they will persevere. Please join me in supporting our bocce team.”