Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Jeff Bayone
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Sorry, Honors Bridge Club in NYC
Jan. 28, 2018
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Could not agree more. Allan Graves told me that duplicate players came out of the pool of 32,000,000 rubber bridge players. But only 200,000 did. We need to recreate this pool so that duplicate players will once again emerge “by osmosis” because there is no way we can teach ourselves out of the predicament we are in. Please see my post on"Where bridge is dying and a possible solution.
Jan. 28, 2018
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Honors teaches 150 beginners a year. Good, but no where near what we'd have to do to create a whole new generation of players. Please see my latest posting about rubber bridge. It speaks to your comment about where our current BW readers learned.
TY
Jan. 28, 2018
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Can you tell me more about the teaching programs in the larger units?
Jan. 28, 2018
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Agreed. Volunteering is the farthest thing from my mind. If bridge is to grow, we must rely on solid business models.
Jan. 28, 2018
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Like I said, this might not work all over. But how can offering rubber bridge be bad, even in clubs you describe. The ACBL's mission statement, after all, is to foster bridge, duplicate is not mentioned.
Jan. 28, 2018
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I posted a couple yesterday. They are still on the home page.
Jan. 28, 2018
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Where's your mom live? Big city, rural….That may have something to do with it.
Jan. 28, 2018
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Good questions about clubs that have folded into one another. ACBL still doesn't offer us the ability to easily see where multiple clubs share the same space. Unit run clubs come to mind. Often these “clubs”, each small in stature, if combined, would rate among the top clubs in the country and would like to be recognized as such. It also affords them the ability to hold classes and both limited and Open games.
I didn't want to mention it, because most clubs don't have our facilities, but we do have a five person kitchen staff and serve about 2,000 buffet style breakfasts, lunches and dinners a week. This goes a long way to making what you referred to as a social experience for the players possible.
Jan. 28, 2018
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Your mom just responded to a similar blog that I wrote.
Jan. 28, 2018
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Hello Debbie's mother. Ask Debbie who gave her her first shot at teaching? I think she was about 16 or 17 at the time. I just posted something new on BW that speaks to this. Please let me know what you think.
Jeff
Jan. 28, 2018
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Would you believe those are the two most common answers!
Jan. 28, 2018
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Some of the stuff I'm after….What it takes to create a new duplicate player. Where bridge is dying. REACH. Rubber bridge. Incentivizing teaching.
Jan. 28, 2018
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I simply wanted you to pick two numbers.
Jan. 28, 2018
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Tom, Georgiana,
Honors starts beginner classes every two months. Year in, year out, we teach close to 150 new players a year. Over the years we found that only a tiny fraction took to duplicate. But we have always been a duplicate club so all our efforts have always been focused on getting players into our games, starting first with our novice games. Even with what I would consider a really excellent program in place, few took to the game. NO MORE. Starting in April of last year we totally switched the focus to creating bridge players. Just social players. No trying to get them into “relaxed” duplicate, which is just duplicate. No novice duplicate, which is just duplicate. Just bridge. We also offered them EASY PASS, our very discounted monthly playing program that makes them feel as if they belong to their own private social club. The results have been more than encouraging. In eight months our social sessions have gone from 2 - 3 tables to 5 - 8 tables. And we have ten of them a week. Equally important is that several of our social players have “graduated” to duplicate on their own. A few are playing today in a District 3 Regional in Rye, NY. We are about to make one more huge change. Social bridge will become rubber bridge very soon. That means scores will be kept over the session, prizes will be awarded for the best results over some yet to be determined amount of time. I totally agree with both of your assessments. Duplicate is not for everyone. At its height, 32,000,000 Americans played bridge. At duplicate's height, 200,000 did. That's 160 to 1. Less than 1%. Why do we keep chasing that 1%? No more, Honors has been going after the bigger piece of the pie and it is paying off big time. Will enough of these players ever switch to duplicate? Who knows. Maybe it will be their kids, who will once again be exposed to our wonderful game, that will ultimately take up the banner.
Jan. 28, 2018
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Where I'm headed, with my emphasis on the Open game, is to clue BW bloggers into exactly what kind of effort it will take to produce a whole new generation of tournament players. There is a great deal of conversation now about whether REACH will hurt or help Regional and National bridge tournaments. While this may be an interesting question, some have noted that unless we create a whole lot of new tournament players quickly, Regionals and Nationals will be contracting no matter how we rearrange the deck chairs.
Jan. 28, 2018
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I meant, “In the last five years where did all the new players learn to play?”
Jan. 28, 2018
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Only 150 clubs in the entire country offer one or more novice games a week. That's a lot less than three per state because, and I'm guessing, Florida alone probably has a disproportionate share of these games. If only the top 10% of ACBL clubs held these games, that 150 would amount to one in two top 10% of clubs holding novice games. Maybe that doesn't sound so bad. But the fact that in the entire country only 150 clubs have even one game should shake the organization to its core. In the next decade we are going to see a ton of our long time players either stop playing, stop traveling to tournaments, or cut back on their play. If we lose just 5% a year, to stay even we would need these novice type games to help produce 9,000 players. That's 60 NEW players a year from each of these games. How many novice games in the entire country even have regular 15 table (60 player) games?
Jan. 27, 2018
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Dan what do you think of the experiment Honors will be trying?
I've laid it out a few comments below.
Jan. 27, 2018
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Clubs across the country have been running some form of supervised play for as long as I can remember. All of mine did. First of all, it always sounded like some form of adult day care. That aside, where's the fun? If the fun is in the learning, I get it. But we (I) may have been blind to the bigger picture. Just plain FUN. Honors is planning a huge experiment. We are going to start calling all of our ten social supervised play sessions rubber bridge. Yes, we'll still have instructors there to answer questions and fill in where needed, but soon everyone will be keeping score over the course of the session. At each table they will play four hands using Chicago-style vulnerability. Each hand will be unto itself. Part scores will not be contested. As Jacqui Mitchell, one of our supervised play (sorry, rubber bridge) instructors points out, “we want our students to learn to bid games.” Not only that, this form of scoring is very much like duplicate scoring with part scores earning 50 extra points and sacrifice bidding being based on vulnerability. Jay Whipple has volunteered to track everyone's rubber bridge results and come up with handicaps so that different level players will be welcome into any level game. We see prizes in the form of free plays, playing lessons with some of our pro players, and maybe down the road, for the top players of the year, a trip to a National rubber bridge event held in conjunction with an ACBL Nationals. All this to start, weather permitting, within the next month or so.
Jan. 27, 2018
Jeff Bayone edited this comment Jan. 27, 2018
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