2008 Boston Report

Boston was a good place for a tournament - there were two hotels but they were connected by an indoor mall so you didn’t have to go outside. Attendance was down a little from expectations but still was a respectable 10,640 tables. There were lots of restaurants close by and a tournament committee that worked hard to make everyone feel at home. One of the Chairs Dr Frank Lombardo was most helpful when my wife, Joan, caught her foot and fell fast down onto the concrete sidewalk. I will say the medical care in Boston was superb. She was in the emergency room for 5-6 hours and was seen by a General Surgeon, a Plastic Surgeon, and an Eye Doctor. She is doing fine now.

National Co-Volunteers of the Year

My year as President of the ACBL is ending and I have thoroughly enjoyed traveling around ACBLand and attending tournaments all over. As President I was impressed by the tremendous number of volunteers all over the country. I am allowed to honor someone as volunteer of the Year. This was a hard choice and I finally settled on 2 great volunteers from Houston.

The National Co-Volunteers of the year are: ERIC SNOW & BERT ONSTOTT from Houston.

National Goodwill and Charity Committee Appointments

It also is my pleasure to announce my permanent appointments to the National Goodwill and Charity Committee’s for 2009.

National Goodwill Committee

National Charity Committee

Congratulations to all of the appointee’s.

Mind Sports

In October the first ever MIND SPORTS GAMES were held in Beijing, China. It was at the site of the 2008 Olympics and received support from the Chinese government. It was a great success with over 140 countries competing for medals in five games: BRIDGE, CHESS, DRAUGHTS, GO, AND XIANGQI. The overall awards were presented at an outdoor closing ceremony. The events were carried on two television stations in China and there were many articles in the newspapers. I wish we could get publicity like that in North America. An article about Cheese (and Bridge) on the Time internet may interest some.You can find it at www.time.com/time/world/article/0.8599,1827716.00.html.

Mind Sports was a buzz word that created much more publicity than just bridge alone. Why can’t each city organize a Mind Sports Event? We could invite many games to participate and I believe the press would take notice. Its something new and I encourage some of you to try this in your area.

Free ACBL Bridge Column

In an effort to get more publicity for bridge, the ACBL will supply a bridge column with a space for a local club or unit to insert a name and local telephone number. These columns are not meant to compete with the syndicated columns carried in the major newspapers but to be offered free of charge to the weekly and monthly community newspapers that are in every city. I hope these columns will entice the many people who read columns but are not members of the ACBL to give one of our clubs a try.

New Bridge Teachers Web site

A new web site has been established for the Bridge Teachers for Youth (www.btfy.org). Give it a look if you are interested in teaching bridge to youth.

The first youth NABC was held in Atlanta over 4th of July 2008 and it was a huge success. The second one will be held in conjunction with the Washington DC Nationals in July 2009, and a third has been approved for 2010 but the site has not yet been picked.

The new Bridge Law book 2007-8 is now available from the ACBL.

Real Estate

Management is authorized to negotiate the purchase of a parcel of land and proceed with the development of an ACBL headquarter building pursuant to the terms and conditions of the proposal provided in executive session.

Platinum Pairs

A new event the Platinum Pairs has been approved for 2010. It will be the first Friday, Saturday, & Sunday of the Spring NABC. To play you must have won 50 Platinum points in the last 3 years or have 200 life time points. This event will have one more reading at the Houston NABC before it officially comes into effect. It will change some of the other events. If interested, look on the ACBL website for a complete description.

Financial

In 2009 there will be no increase in sanction fees or membership dues. However, there will be and increase for NABC card fees and the sectional surcharge that covers tournament director travel costs.

STAC charges which will include all Tournament director fees for 2009 were modified as follows.

Tables Charges
0-500 $4.35 x number of tables
500-1000 $2,175 + $4.10 x number of tables over 500
1000-2000 $4,225 + $3.75 x number of tables over 1000
2000-4000 $7,975 + $3.30 x number of tables over 2000
4000+ $14,575 + $3.00 x number of tables over 4000

An increase in NABC card fees per player

MABC + events $18 to $20
NABC limited events $16.50 to $17.00
Regional two session events $15.50 to $16.00
Single session and I/N events $14.50 to $15.00

Also, the sectional surcharge increased from $135 to $165.

Miscellaneous

When a sectional (excluding STAC’S) or higher-rated event is being conducted within 25 miles of a club games playing site, the club is permitted to hold only its regularly scheduled club masterpoint games. This means no special games.

Online bridge clubs may run club championships under similar conditions as face to face clubs. All masterpoint awards will be non-pigmented. In an online club championship, each pair must play at least 18 boards. One open club championship may be awarded per quarter for sessions Monday thru Thursday with a maximum first place overall award of 3.90 points.

ACBL management is authorized to sanction silver point sectionals on cruise ships at 65% of open sectional rating for games run by a club/cruise director and at 80% of open sectional rating for those run by an ACBL tournament director.

In closing I will say that it has been a great honor to be your President for 2008 and next year I will be in our District more and I am looking forward to meeting new people as our membership has grown again this year.

Thanks for your support.

Dan


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