A Follow Up to Earl Ball’s Article “WILL CHANGE CREATE INTEREST!!” By Earl Ball.

AN ARTICLE I REALLY DIDN’T WANT TO WRITE by EARL BALL

Stan caused me to re-read the article “Tournament players needed”.  REACTION TO EARL BALL’S CHANGE SUGGESTION. 2017 12 I resisted doing this back in December but I guess now is a better time. The FSA had their final State meeting in March and I’m quite sure not a single change brought up in the article by me or the six players that made comments will show up next season. We aren’t really serious about addressing the concerns that are necessary to draw more players into tournaments. We did an analysis early in the season and it showed we were down 20%; I didn’t review the entire season but I’m sure we took a big hit. Over the last several seasons, before last season, we have been down 5-6% a season. That doesn’t seem like a lot each season but 15% over three seasons is a lot.

The Tournament of Champions was moved to the center of the State to draw more players but we only drew 75% as many players as we did the previous season in Clearwater. I surveyed Zephyrhills players as to why they didn’t play and the answer was why, I’ve got nothing to gain. Now is a good time to stop and look at the situation from my personal perspective. There are those that will think I believe change should be made because it will favor me. That’s wrong! The best thing for me is to leave things alone; I’m doing pretty well but that might not be the best for tournament shuffleboard.
Look at the comments by Maureen Bryant and Sue Krynak. Both say they like playing shuffleboard but traveling to the tournaments is discouraging because of the traffic, I agree. Now what kind of incentive does it take to get you to attend more tournaments. Maureen points out that the better players should play with less experienced players; fine, change the rules. She points out that the beginners need to learn the strategies of the game; fine, change the rules to allow open coaching so they can learn. Bob Jones points out that major Championships should remain 2 out of 3 – 75 point games; good point but maybe only Major Championships. He is intrigued by the 75 point difference ending a game; just think what he would feel about a kitchen being 10 points for the other team, not a deduction. Try this sometime; games go very fast and are exciting because there are big swings in score. Bob points out there are lots of smart people with ideas worth trying; I wonder what he thinks now that we have, again, done nothing. Doug Schmitt brings up a good point. Devise a system that allows everyone to play all day long the first day and only those that do well come back the second day for maybe the quarters, semis and finals.
We have lots of reasons to do nothing but we have one big reason to do something, SURVIVAL!
My experience tells me that there are plenty of shuffleboard players. I live in Betmar and we have 275 members. We get 30 to 40 new members each year and lose about the same number for various reasons. The challenge is what do you use as an incentive to get players to play more than the occasional tournament. Our players like playing at 7:00 each morning first come first serve, they like playing round robin a couple of times a week, they like playing turkey shoot before coffee hour, they like league play (three games), they like mixed doubles one afternoon a week, they like Citywide open shuffle one evening a week and they like Hoss Collar. Hoss Collar is a good example of what an incentive can do. It costs a dollar to play and after the three games they give back two dollars to the highest scorers until the money is gone. You should see the excitement in a winner’s eyes, the smiles on their faces and the applause by the other players and everyone stays until all winners have been recognized. Wouldn’t that be great for the winners in Shuffleboard Tournaments.

Earl Ball.  2018 04 16

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WILL CHANGE CREATE INTEREST!! An article by Earl Ball in 2005!!!

WILL CHANGE CREATE INTEREST!!  An article by Earl Ball in 2005!!!

It’s the year for change in Shuffleboard!! As I sit and watch all the sporting events on TV it’s obvious they’ve made changes to create interest and it’s worked. Golf, our number one rival has become very exciting and somehow makes people feel they can compete. Baseball has gone from a boring hit and run game to the excitement that the next guy up will hit the long ball and turn the game around. Football has gone from three yards and a cloud of dust to the big play!! Basketball from the two hand jump shot to the slam dunk and long game winning three pointer!! Even tennis has gone to the arched back serve creating new speed and excitement. Hockey realized that they needed to change and have opened the game up this year. All of these sports have become more popular than ever with new players pouring into their sports, interest and enthusiasm is higher than ever.
Our sport once very popular, when some clubs had thousands of members, a time when players had to wait in line for a court, is due for an update to regain it’s rightful place in the sporting world!! Who better to lead the charge than the Florida Shuffleboard Association and their President Clarence Wright! When Clarence took office, his pledge was to make the changes necessary to re-popularize the game; he appointed a committee comprised of the District Presidents to bring forward the changes they saw as necessary. The Committee’s recommendations will be presented this Saturday at the State Meeting in Sebring. This vitally important State meeting is open to all, so come see your Officers in action as they take on the exciting challenge of “Change”. October 15th, 09:00 hrs; lunch is provided. We can come back!!!!

It’s also the year of the 10-day notice, so if you have an idea you think will help, this is the year to submit that idea! Article by Earl Ball. 2005 10 12.

HOWEVER; Earl did not stop writing  in 2005; as most of you know he continues!!: I am now giving you an excellent example of Earl’s ongoing STIMULATING remarks; this time he is writing in 2017:   When you read the pdf file, do take note of all the COMMENTS.  I do hope and expect that the FSA Board is taking such proposals c/w reactions, under consideration.  Click:   REACTION TO EARL BALL’S CHANGE SUGGESTION. 2017 12  Posted by Stan McCormack on 2018 04 15

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SHUFFLEBOARD EXCITEMENT by Earl Ball. 2018 04 15. Birthplace of Hockey Added by Doug Stockman.

Mike Seyfer and Earl Ball

SHUFFLEBOARD EXCITEMENT by Earl Ball. 

Mike Seyfer and I went to a Hockey playoff game last Thursday between The Lighting and the Devils. Now Mike doesn’t know much about Hockey and of course I’m somewhat of an expert; I’ve been to a couple of Hockey games, I have friends that are Canadian and I’ve played Shuffleboard on a Hockey Court as proof of my Hockey knowledge so I was able to explain to Mike what was going on.

Man, do they play on a big court and the biggest difference between hockey and shuffleboard is they have races from one end of the court to the other and the fans get really excited to see who will win the race; maybe we should have races. They also only play with one disc and they really bat that thing around; talk about hard shooting.

Hockey allows for a kitchen guard and he really limits the kitchens because he is as big as any football player you’ve ever seen and even wears more equipment. The game is really fast, the players run over each other and the fans are really loud; similar to what you see at a shuffleboard match. It was great fun and I’m glad I understand Shuffleboard or I wouldn’t know what was going on.
Earl 4-14-2018    Stan Speaks: I now give you a short read about the atmosphere which exists in NHL  Hockey Games to-day: HOCKEY IS CANADAup  2018 04 14.

The posting above by Earl, caused Doug Stockman to respond: Nova Scotians know about hockey . Thought since the birthplace of hockey is in a town
about a 30 minute drive from my home town ( Berwick ) your hockey knowledge should
be increased . To attempt to draw any comparison between hockey and shuffleboard
takes a great imagination. Earl, I enjoyed reading your attempt .
All the best to both of you .
Regards, Doug S.   Doug also added this link:
https://www.town.windsor.ns. ca/birthplace-of-hockey.html and

 

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We Give You an Enlightened Comment with regard to Men and Women Competing Against Each Other!!

On Face Book there are a number of comments with regard to the wisdom of Men and Women competing against each other!!  Here are some: 

Bernar Borges Hopefully one day the ISA tournaments won’t have a separate women’s division!  Erik Hahmann Id like women to have the option to play against men in FSA events.  I am now going to share with you a number of articles by Terry Rainwater and others regarding this topic in 2008!!  

TERRY RAINWATER MAKES SOME OBSERVATIONS  CHANGE CAN BE FUN!!
We need to do a lot more for our sport to attract new players and liven up the game. The “good ole boys” who want to keep it the game the “way it’s always been” need relax their control and allow those of us with ambition and ideas, to keep trying new things to liven it up!! ...
The FSA needs to have more open draw tournaments… The FSA needs to get away from this Man/Woman stuff – We’re equal in this life and this sport.
The National needs more “Any Doubles”!!
We need to change the rules to allow Open Communication with our partners – yes, coaching!
AND YES, we need to play more Frame games to shorten the day/tournaments!
We need to encourage more excitement from spectators!!
C’mon! Jump in!! Don’t make me the only one with opinions! ……. 

Submitted by Terry Rainwater. 2009-11-05   Stan speaks: Don’t stop reading here. I am inserting an article in pdf format. Good Read.  OPINION by Terry Rainwater   For those who do not know Terry, at time of writing, he was a sincere, dedicated,  and talented individual.   Stan McCormack.  2018 04 14.

 

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2008 Article by Dieter Hussmann Consistent With the Objective of the Current FSA President!!

Mike Eak of the West Coast District, with the encouragement of MANY, is doing his best to increase the number of young people involved in Shuffleboard. The current FSA President is supporting Mike.  Each of us should direct our attention to TAKE ACTION consistent with the objective of increasing youth involvement!!

DIETER HUSSMANN SAID THIS in JANUARY OF 2008:

Dieter is the Serving President of the German Shuffleboard Assn.

DIETER WRITING IN 2008: I would like to add a few personal comments: Let me start by forestalling the conclusion – it’s all up to you!
You might call it megalomania for a rookie to appoint himself as judge on a game that exists for about a hundred years as it is, but then again, considering the potential of Shuffleboard, I feel it is my duty to share my views about the future of Shuffleboard with you.
Living outside North America seems to be an advantage in this case. It lets me argue without any prejudice, without being blocked by the daily business in the Shuffleboard circuit, without the danger of not to see the trees for the forest. I believe every one of us is driven by his wish to secure the future of Shuffleboard and to let it have the reputation it deserves.
As we agree on the objective to achieve, we should find out about the starting point and the best way to reach our target.
Let’s face the bad news: Shuffleboard in North America probably suffers from the worst image you can think of in terms of sports or leisure activities. The number of Shufflers is decreasing in a frightening and increasing degree; same applies to the Shuffleboard facilities. As there are virtually no young Shufflers, the probability of a change to this situation is close to zero, therefore leading into a vicious circle. Shuffleboard is clearly represented inadequate in public awareness and potential sponsors’ business life.
Before you stop reading further because this is all too frustrating, there is some good news as well: you already (still) have ten thousands of Shufflers and still have facilities in beautiful located spots (you have your Wimbledon in St. Petersburg since the 1920s). The majority of people who have never heard about Shuffleboard and who start playing for the first time, love the game of Shuffleboard. Not being influenced by the public image, they view it as an ideal family leisure activity (which it truly is). My experience is based on the development of Shuffleboard in Germany, where we started to play only two years ago. With only small efforts of promotion the number of Shufflers is constantly rising, so is the number of courts. The German Shuffleboard Association consists of members of all ages, from 10 to 75. We encourage especially the young people to give it a try and our latest joiners, all of them teenagers in their well-known difficult ages, prove our methods to be correct. The participation of young players will lead to a positive image with arguments for the attraction of sponsors and with good prospects for Shuffleboard to survive. As a first result we have members in more and more states of Germany and we are in contact with potential sponsors, willing to have a closer look at this new and interesting thing called Shuffleboard.
Now, don’t let me be misunderstood. I am not saying Germany is the saviour of Shuffleboard, but it’s one of a good example of what is possible, another one is the Friday Night Shuffle in St. Pete. Wilbur (Estes) and Terry (Rainwater) both have mentioned a lot of measures pointing into the right direction, most mentionable promotion, young people, time and money. Isolated, all of these measures must fail. Does advertising in a newspaper for itself promise new Shufflers? Would you change your mind about the car you dislike the most, just because an advertisement tells you to? Moreover, you won’t find any high school kids without investing time and money in the right manner.
The only way out is to revive Shuffleboard from inside, it is a bundle of measures, taken by a professional individual, embedded and under surveillance of a Shuffleboard organization. It is obvious that this is a full-time job (and even more) and as such it must be compensated.
Where does the money come from? As long as we don’t find any major sponsors, I really like Terry’s idea of an annual membership fee. The money raised is to be used to find the key, the “Holy Grail” to it all: access to and acceptance from young people.
As I tried to point out earlier, it is most difficult to change an existing image of something unpopular. That’s why we need to get in touch with children at the age of 10 or 11. Most of them should be free of prejudices and willing to look for something interesting to play. Teach them to play by offering them an opportunity to play when and where they want, under their preferred circumstances (music, food + drinks). Find formats of play they like, with action and cheering. If that means some changes for the game of Shuffleboard – fine. Mankind has survived because and not although it has adopted evolution. Find accessories that help Shuffleboard look “cool” (Shirts, Cues), build an attractive and maintained website, let them get in touch with the best players and build their idols. If, for whatever reasons, they cannot come to you, make sure you come to them.
Having done that first step everything else will develop. You will notice the development of minor leagues, the rising interest of the kids’ parents, rising memberships, more money involved, sponsors and all the other achievements mentioned by Wilbur and Terry.
It is good to see many of you caring about the future of Shuffleboard, but talking and writing will not be sufficient. Shuffleboard needs your action. On your next FSA meeting, I would love to hear about a discussion and a motion to drive this topic further ahead and then look around for a professional expert who is enthusiastic enough to really start this rocket.
As I said: it’s all up to you! Dieter Hussmann, President GSA 2008 01 23

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Most Canadians Are Anxious To Leave FL, AZ, and TX to Escape the Extreme Heat???

April 14th, 2018; Storm Begins!!

Hi there Shufflers!!  Literally millions of people who live in mid southern Ontario, are preparing for extreme weather conditions!!  NO, not excessive HEAT as YOU might expect at this time of  the year; rather we are, as I type, experiencing snow and freezing rain.  The combination of snow and rain on the windshield IS NOT EASY TO REMOVE.

Given the history of freezing rain at this time of year, Lois and I, like many others purchased additional groceries, bottled water, and returned to our residence where we expect to spend a minimum of the next two days!!!    One might think, SO WHAT IS A LITTLE SNOW??  Snow is not the problem, rain freezing on the hydro (electric) lines is the problem. Power outages are the real problem. Many people have electric heat, but even if you do not, one still requires electricity to operate your gas furnace or oil??

The Weatherman tells us: “Sunday morning another round of ice pellets will move into the district, quickly changing to freezing rain later in the morning. Significant ice build up is possible on Sunday.  Power outages are possible given the significant ice buildup combined with strong and gusty winds.”    

Let’s hope the weatherman is WRONG!!!  Stan McCormack.  2018 04 14

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Ann Hersom “Left Us” 5 Years Ago To-day.

Ann Hersom was a most respected shuffler, an active contributor to the Sport. Ann left us 5 years ago to-day, 2013 04 13.  Here is a link to her induction into the FSA HOF by Past President Dave Minnich:  https://celebrate100yearsofshuffleboard.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/tribute-to-ann-hersom-by-dave-minnich.pdf   Posted by Stan McCormack. 2018 04 13.

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