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By Laura Drinan
Hometown Weekly Reporter
Since the new Council on Aging (COA) building opened its doors in October, Wellesley’s seniors have had no issues moving in to their new home away from home. The multipurpose room is regularly used for luncheons and guest speakers, and seniors frequent the Mary Bowers café for a cup of coffee and a chat with friends.
On the second floor of Wellesley’s Tolles Parsons Center (TPC), a group of seniors sit in the game room, their gazes fixated on the two felted tables as their friends line up their shots, hoping to sink each ball in their suit and win the bracket.
The balls clink and clank together as the players strategically hit the off-white cue ball with their pool cues, knocking the numbered balls into the pocket and occasionally sending the cue ball in, too – an amateur move known as a scratch.
But Dick Carey, who organized the tournament’s brackets, gave the players an important reminder: “There’s no such thing as an easy shot,” he said. “We’re all a little nervous when we come in.”
As the nerves settled, though, the game room became loud with laugher and chatter. Many of the players belong to one of the statewide league’s divisions, so the monthly K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Seniors) tournament acted as an excuse for the longtime friends and teammates to get together.
The league, which will be beginning its twenty-fourth season and twelfth year in the spring, will welcome a Wellesley team to join the other 27 that are spread across the state, now that they have a designated space at the Tolles Parsons Center to play.
However, it’s not only players in the league who are invited to participate. The K.I.S.S. tournament welcomes all pool players, regardless of skill, to join; it’s a tournament simply meant for fun and to enjoy a few games of pool.
“These guys come from all walks of life,” said Carey. “We have a good time.”
Since the seniors play best two out of three games in the tournament to ensure that all have a chance to play more than one game, they usually do not finish within their four-hour time slot. With the final players scheduled to finish the tournament in Natick, it simply meant there would be another day in the week for the seniors to get together over eight ball.