June 18, 2024

F1000 Scientist

Health to Life

The Indoor Game of Dartball

2 min read

Players have been competing in the Mon Yough Dartball League since 1928. Wisconsin formed a State Dartball Committee in 1951. Still, many people have never even heard of the game of Dartball, never the less had the chance to play.

While Dartball is a game played with darts and a board, it is not at all similar to the better known versions of darts. For instance, instead of being rounded with 20 scoring areas called “innings”, a Dartball board is a four foot by four foot square with scoring areas directly related to the game of American Baseball.

The board is placed two feet off of the floor, and angled so that it appears diamond shaped. It is also tilted, so that the bottom edge is eight inches closer to the shooter than the top edge. This makes it easier for the board to accept darts that are landing on the downward end of their flight path.

Players stand twenty to twenty-five feet from the board, and toss darts at it. Each dart will have a scoring area that has an associated action. For instance, it may land in a “strike” area, or a “foul ball” area. Play proceeds as it does in a game of Baseball, with a player throwing darts until they make an out, get a hit, or walk.

There are sections on the board that score as a double-play, a sacrifice out, and a “two base single”. A two base single advances any base runners two bases, and puts the batter on first base. Dartball is essentially a game of baseball, played with darts.

The exact rules of the game will differ slightly from Dartball league to Dartball league. For example, some leagues will have a throw line at twenty feet, others at twenty-five. Still other leagues will have two throw lines, a closer one for children and seniors, and a standard line for all other players. Wisconsin does have a set of rules that leagues share, making it possible for them to have an official State Dartball tournament.

Unlike other forms of darts which have taken up residence in taverns and pubs, Dartball has been embraced as a favorite pastime of church social organizations. Many of the oldest and most active Dartball Leagues are church leagues where games are played in church halls, making Dartball a family friendly activity.

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