ACBL’s Newest Members
by Peggy Kaplan
Twenty-four seventh- and eighth-graders from the Reno Youth Bridge organization came to the Spring NABC being held in Reno NV. They are from six area middle schools. ACBL has 24 new members as all of them joined. Some youngsters won their first masterpoints.
The RYB organization began last year as a pilot project. Reno-area bridge player Bud Brewer recruited another player, Kathy Lane, a recently retired school teacher, and they began going to schools offering to teach bridge.
From this start, the RYB now has programs in six of the seven middle schools in Washoe County (Reno). There are 17 volunteer teachers from among local players.
“Half of our bridge teachers are former school teachers,” says Brewer. “They do it for the love of promoting the game.”
The teachers typically go to schools during the last period of the day and bridge is taught as an enrichment class.
“The students have a sense of pride when they learn and advance,” says Lane. “They like the challenge. We think they will eventually play online. Bridge creates lifetime contacts.”
“I like thinking about the math involved in bridge,” says student Alexis Jones. “I also like the people.”
How did the young players do?
“This is the first tournament for these kids,” says Brewer, “and they are excited.”
After the bridge game, the students enjoyed lunch together and trophies were presented. The North-South winners Barly Agerholm and Sierra Jickling, represented Swope Middle School. Patrick Dempsey and Nathan Kerr, who also attend Swope, were East-West winners.