We had an excellent turnout for this month’s event – 22 players showed up to compete, including 6 first timers! We really took over the space… as I was getting everyone settled, one guy who was not there for the event commented about it being quite a good show – I invited him to join in, but he had to demur, although he did take one of the fliers and so maybe we’ll get him next time. Also on the outreach theme – there was a couple who came to play with one another who ended up in the corner of the room – again they got a card and who knows, maybe they’ll come in the future. Also, one of the newcomers found us through a means other than Meetup, which is the first sign of our new push for greater social media presence paying off! Granted she came through Facebook instead of Instagram – it’s just a matter of time. I also got a lot of good feedback about the YouTube channel, so our social media game has really gotten strong!
A big thanks to Mark A, for doing a little bit of tournament maintenance at the outset making sure everyone was well set up, until a late arriving first timer took away what would otherwise have been his first round bye.
In the “A” bracket, we started off round 1 with Jeremy K (fresh back from his victories in the San Antonio ABT tournament) overcoming Bodger, me (fresh off my victories in the Seattle Winter Invitational) over Max (visiting from Seattle), Kyle over Dave (fresh off his victories in the Seattle Winter Invitational), and Michael G (exciting to see him in person again!) over Bob H (ditto!). Jeremy and I went on to face off in the final, and I narrowly defeated him. Dave ended up winning the consolation bracket over Bodger.
The “B” bracket ended up being the small one, with just 6 players, 4 of them first timers. This made it impossible for me to completely pair experienced with new, and so we had first-timer Alex playing first-timer Beebe – but that seemed to go alright. Also in round one we had first-timer Kristin (who by the way wins the award for most consistent participant in the recently concluded online study group) over Mir (who was late getting into the study group but made up for it by his track record once in), and Joel over first-timer Bob M. Kristin went on to win the final over Joel, with Mir taking the consolation bracket.
The “C” bracket started off with Cam over first-timer Neil, Ed over first-timer Gene, Tim T (without his daughter this month) over Julie, and first-timer (and later arriver) Jeremy A over Mark A. Ed went on to win the bracket over Cam, with Gene taking the consolation bracket.
So overall – 6 new players, and 2 of them cashed! We like first-timers to cash, makes them more enthusiastic to come back. But I got the sense that a number of them are going to become regulars – I believe it was Bob M telling me that he couldn’t bring his board this month because they hadn’t finished unpacking yet.
Our next event is going to be the first Championship Qualifier for 2024 – go to meetup and RSVP if you haven’t already. And our regular tournament for March will be pushed forward one day, so it falls on the Saturday before St. Patrick’s day instead of on St. Patrick’s day — just in case that impacts space availability. See you there!