May District Report


Forty is the old age of youth; fifty the youth of old age.

Victor Hugo


In lawyer speak if both sides are unhappy with the final result, it’s probably a good settlement. Such was probably the case for several issues on the table at the Reno Spring NABC national board meetings in March. Some come quickly to mind:

The Age of Enlightenment

There was a motion to change the beginning age of senior status in ACBL to something longer in the tooth than the current 55-year-old player. Although that makes sense when you figure the average age of a league member is just about 70, but the aftereffects of such changes are not so pretty. For one, there is a popular Western Conference Senior Regional in Mesa, Arizona that has enjoyed terrific successes for the past quarter century. If we bumped up ACBL senior status to 60, 65, or 70 it would drive a stake in the Mesa tournament’s attendance and also deny them valuable hotel room nights. The national board all agreed 55 was probably too low to label an ACBL senior (although AARP is 50), and, if we were declaring today for the first time, a reasonable senior age would be somewhat higher. But to change now could just cause undue hardships and confusion to senior tournaments and events everywhere.

We do not have a horse in this race, since here in District 22 we’ve all but abandoned senior games in favor of 10:00/3:00 early Open Pairs (much better). But I voted against the motion to protect Mesa.

The motion failed 9-16.

Super Seniors

A motion was made to add a new event to the already crowded schedule at ACBL Nationals: a Super Senior Pairs to be played on the final weekend of each Fall NABC. This two day (qualifying and final) national event would be open only to pairs 70 years and over. The maker of the motion stated he was just trying to give attendees a reason to stay for the final weekend.

My inquiries into terms and conditions of contest of this new game turned me off from voting for it. First off, it is declared a national event paying coveted platinum points, yet these points do not count in our annual senior masterpoint races due to the fact the event has too much (age) restriction and limitation.

Second, and for the same reasons, although it is designated an NABC National game, to win it does not count towards Grand Life Master status, should you happen to be over 10,000 MPs and searching for that elusive national title to complete GLM requirements.

Finally, I’m thinking perhaps this should have been called the Super Senior Men’s Pairs, since I am not sure how many women who just turned 70 are willing to jump into such an obvious exposure!

The motion passed 23-2. Oh well.

Good News!

Following the great success of the 2009 Fall NABC in San Diego, we have secured the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel for a repeat performance in the Fall of 2017. Same time, same venue, same weather, same great rates! Vote: 25-0.

New Terms for Charity & Special Games

In 2004 the floodgates were opened to allow near unlimited specialand charity games in clubs. Although that paste is still out of the tube, to restore some sanity we had another one of those nobody’s satisfied” compromise issues. The heated debate went from no change at all, all the way down to doing away with special games completely. Of course neither of those extremes is viable, but there was a lot of soul searching about the landslide masterpoints we are now awarding in clubs.

The compromise was that the month of February is reserved for Junior Fund Games, the month of April is reserved for charity games, and the month of September is reserved for International Fund games. In those months any and all ACBL sanctioned club sessions may be special games for the named funds. In the remaining nine months of the year one game per month per sanctioned session may be a special game for those purposes. Masterpoints for all these special games will now be awarded at 70% of sectional rating with a cap of 6.00 MPs.

Also, any club, in any calendar year, that runs one (or more) allowed special local charity game that is sanctioned for extra masterpoints must make available for public inspection an accounting of all funds raised in such games no later than Feb. 28 of the following year.

Motion passed 23-2, effective July 1, 2010.

Final Heat

One more heated motion was brought up by the Board of Governors, who requested the number of boards in play at regional events at NABCs be mandated to require 26 or 27 boards per session. I see little future change in the common 26-board movements, but it should at least be a sponsoring district’s option to have schedule input. I voted against such a confining mandate. However, all NABC National events remain 26 or more boards. Always.

Despite some refinements and re-writes, motion failed 10-15.

See all the Reno NABC board actions online at 


Enjoy the aromatic beauty of Spring, especially in lovely downtown southern California! —