Stu Cassell Speaks: Here in the Midwest tournament season is about to commence. My club, The St. Louis Shuffleboard Club, has grown to over 20 active members. Most of us compete in both local and some out of state senior games, as well as the National Senior Games, with shuffleboard of course, being our primary events.
This year we’re participating in the St. Charles Golden Games, the Indiana State Games, the St. Louis Senior Olympics, the Missouri State Games, and the Perryville Senior Olympics. For the most part we will skip the Franklin County Silver Games, which I have deemed the most bizarre shuffleboard event in the county.
Last year was my first year as a participant of the Franklin County Silver Games. As a member of the St. Louis Shuffleboard Club, I had been warned by fellow members that Franklin County runs the shuffleboard event “differently” than any other senior games. I had no idea just how different it would be.
I ended up competing against my doubles partner in the shuffleboard singles event. We are both decent defensive players and I beat my friend Bob Jennerjohn by a narrow margin, with our scores both being in the 20’s. I expected to move on to the next round. WRONG! The way their event coordinator runs shuffleboard there is only ONE round, and the winner is the person among all of the competitors who scores the highest.
It was the same for doubles. Bob and I beat the two gentlemen we faced, but did not advance to the next round because there was no next round. Again, the team with the highest score after just ONE game were the first place winners.
Going back to the singles competition – players who have competed in that shuffleboard event and knew how bizarre it’s run, did NOT remove their opponents disks. That’s how the winners ended up with scores in the 70’s. Rather than compete against one another, they cooperated with one another to get the highest scores. That’s not a competition.
Although we’ve complained and I sent a letter to the Franklin County Silver Games organizers, it seems doubtful that they’re going to change the way they run the shuffleboard events. Consequently, neither I or most of my fellow club members plan on returning to Franklin County this year.
I hate to bad mouth anyone. However, as a player who first learned the game in Avon Park, Florida from seasoned pro’s, and participated in local and district tournaments prior to moving to St. Louis, Missouri, I have to say, I’ve never encountered anything as bizarre as the way they run the shuffleboard tournament in Franklin County.
Stu Cassell: 2018 04 23.