Jim and Beth Allen Speak: Over the past decade many shuffleboard seeds were planted in Europe, and clubs have sprouted up in Germany, Norway, Russia, and the United Kingdom. This past year a new nation formed its own National Organization and now players in Austria are playing shuffleboard, and while they currently only play in Vienna, their hope is to form clubs throughout the country.
This week 20 shufflers (26 total travelers) will fly to London and Sunday, April 22nd, a bus will meet them at the airport and take them to Norwich. This is where Peter and Lesley Davis have established the United Kingdom Shuffleboard Association, and their club is now 3 years old and the players are getting better and better. They felt more confident this time around and wanted to test their skills against better competition , so Peter Davis reached out to see if we could put together a group to travel and give them a good test of their improved skills. The Norwegian players have wanted to challenge the UK as well, so there will be a team event that features our North American Team, the UK Team, and the Norwegian Team. Special awards will be presented for outstanding individual play as well.
On Saturday, April 28th this group then will go back to London and fly to Vienna, Austria for a 2 day shuffleboard tournament. This will be a singles event and will include at least 16 members of the German Shuffleboard Association, and 8 members of the newly formed Austrian Shuffleboard Association. Peter Krappel, the President of the Austrian Shuffleboard Association has worked hard to organize this event, and he has counted on the guidance of Dieter and Birgitt Hussmann as the time gets nearer to this promotional tournament.
While the promotion of shuffleboard is first and foremost for these events, there will be time for a little sightseeing in each country as well. Monday April 23rd for instance the group will visit the famous Blicking Estate, birthplace of Anne Boleyn. A Ghost Walk is planned one evening. While in Vienna a full day of sightseeing, including a cruise down the Danube River will cap off an exciting adventure. But what everyone always remembers the most is the new friends we will meet and of course watching the sport of shuffleboard grow over the years in these countries!!!!
Jim and Beth Allen