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All comments by Len Fettig
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Diversity of opinion is a good thing. Turning on each other is a bad thing. Let's try to solve problems with a healthy exchange of ideas.
Aug. 18
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We ask players to preregister for our tournament. Because 78% will tell us that they will attend, planning is so much easier and quite accurate.
When our D.I.C. arrives, he/she is handed a detailed report of the expected table counts for every event on the schedule.

If you were having a party in your home, would you want to know how many guests to expect?

Is it bad tournament planning of is it that our Tournament chairs don't know as much about organizing tournaments as they would like to believe?
I think we need to do more to develop our tournament chairs.
Aug. 18
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… and then there were five. Two of the challengers for BoD seats have withdrawn from the race.

http://www.acbl.org/about-acbl/administration/election-chart/
Aug. 18
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Non-members don't have an ACBL number, so the ACBL does not record their masterpoints. When they do join, their Club Managers can send in a report from ACBLScore and the new member will get credit for the points earned at the Club for up to the prior 12 months.
Aug. 16
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I saw a tournament flyer this year and the entry fee was $18; but ACBL members get the discounted fee of $14. I thought that was a rather nice way of dealing with this topic.

BTW, I think the fee is now standardized at $4 for both Regionals and Sections and only applies to lapsed ACBL members.
Temporary Memberships @ $7.99 are only available to people who have never been ACBL members.
Aug. 12
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Alan, I was not aware of that either. Does it follow that GNT games are also not counted toward total tables?
Aug. 12
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In my world, trick two to the SK is ruffed by RHO. The D return is ruffed by LHO, then it goes spade ruff and diamond ruff.
I throw my hand on the table and claim the rest; not mentioning the outstanding trump. The Director is called and LHO gets to claim another diamond ruff. Down 4 - all of them trump tricks. My partner is ballistic and yelling that I should have drawn trumps for down two.
On to the next hand.
Aug. 11
Len Fettig edited this comment Aug. 11
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…and then there is the NABC in Hawaii. Try resetting your internal clock for that time ZZonzzzz……
Aug. 7
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I'd like to understand the Education Foundation.

What I've discovered so far is that they hired a Florida Realtor to do Strategic Planning.
Her presentation had no strategy and no plan. It was a list of ‘things we might do’.

A film was proposed and $200K was allocated. The trailer is not engaging and it has no identifiable message.

If anyone has a better understanding of where this Foundation is going, please chime in.
July 26
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Michael Hopkins. Thanks for seeking clarification.

Our Intermediate/Newcomer (I/N - 0-299) players want to play against their peer group. While we might think that is the Gold Rush pairs, they really want a game with 0-199 or 0-299 MP limits. These players are a major force in District 15 (and I suspect in all Districts). They plan their tournament schedules (travel) around the tournaments that are I/N Friendly.
Regionals that add I/N friendly sessions see a 10-20% increase in table count. From that I conclude that we are drawing more players to our tournaments because we are I/N friendly.


BTW, I was playing in tournaments in the 1970's and certainly enjoyed playing in Open Pair events, that were wide-open and included all of the top bridge players.
However, I also recall that tournaments of that era offered Novice Sessions for players with 0-10 MP's. I clearly recall that I traveled to many tournaments in the 1970's to play in the Novice games; including one NABC.


Regardless of what any of us think about stratification and related Master Point tiers, we should not lose sight of our responsibility to deliver Member Benefits. The data strongly supports the need to offer certain events, because our players want them.


BTW, I/N friendly means that the tournament has at least two I/N sessions per day, on two consecutive days.
July 23
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The Milwaukee Sectionals in the 1970's featured free beer and cheese at their Sunday Swiss Team events.
July 23
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Chris, We tried the different options and settled on a percentage display.
The Traveler option slowed down play and caused loud discussions of the hands.
We are happy with the percentage display and do not plan to go to No Display.
July 22
Len Fettig edited this comment July 23
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Often Swiss Team pricing is by team and includes lunch. The Sioux City entry fees were $13 per person per session. There was no bundled pricing for the Swiss Teams. Therefore, each player paid $26 and paid for their own lunch.
July 22
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David, Good question!

The table counts are only meaningful when we examine the population of ACBL members within the tournament ‘foot print’.

In the wide open spaces of the US, a tournament foot print is generally a 200 mile circle around the host site. In super-dense urban areas, that range may be smaller.

Districts should establish realistic attendance goals for their tournaments. While the historical attendance can be helpful in establishing attendance goals, it is really the market size that must be the foremost factor.

Jokingly, ‘don’t lose money' is not a suitable goal.
July 22
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Steve M.
My District has been very active in running NLM Regionals; paired with a Sectional.
We have learned that our 0-299 players are grossly underserved by many Regional tournament schedules.
Regionals that offer as many sessions for the 0-299 players, as they do for Gold Rush, will achieve a 10-15% increase in total table counts.
Further, our 0-299 players are eager to attend tournaments that cater to their peer group.
July 22
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When trying to solve problems, I really perk up when the solutions are either:

throw money at the situation, or

establish rules or restrictions.

Instead, let's go back and see if we really understand the problem. Sometimes it is easy to be distracted and try to micro-manage an adverse outcome, rather than the actual problem.

Coordinating tournament scheduling is a significant issue and it can be quite challenging.

Earlier there was mention of six Regionals in a narrow timeframe and too close geographically.

That means that six sponsoring organizations, six Tournament Coordinators and six Tournament Chairs all seemed to overlook the cramped calendar. Any of those persons/entities could have recognized the developing problem and made alternate plans.
July 21
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Ken,

As I recall, the ACBL requires the gap of 500 MPs between the bottom and second flights.
Other posters may well correct or clarify what I have stated.
July 20
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Re: Tournament Success

I believe,

That all positive outcomes are due to the incredible volunteers who work tirelessly to deliver the best possible tournament experiences.

That all shortcomings and failures (including attendance shortfalls) must be entirely owned by the Tournament Chair.

When I review tournaments, low attendance is almost always due to a combination of three things - Bad Schedule, Bad Leadership and little to no promotion.

I don't like the suggestion that the BoD is in any way responsible or a factor in tournament success or shortcomings.

I respect the rights of all people to disagree with my point of view.

Let's all accept the challenge to improve the things in our own realms.
July 20
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I've published a Best Practices for Small Regionals document for my District.

Feel free to use anything that you like.

http://www.lenfettig.com/Best%20Practices.pdf

I've also developed metrics to assess our tournaments. If we achieve what we measure then it makes sense to measure something.
July 19
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Tom Moore,

The Alzheimer's Association did nothing for your Club. Your members did it all.

Bahar Gudwani stated that he re-negotiated the agreement with AA and there were some (unstated) benefits to the ACBL.
I'll wait until I learn what those benefits might be.

We should engage with other organizations where an affinity relationship can be developed, to mutual benefits. I have not seen that in the Longest Day.
July 16
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