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Warren and Bill's Excellent Adventure

By Peggy Kaplan

What can two of the world’s wealthiest men do in their free time?

Anything they wish.

What do Warren Buffett and Bill Gates choose to do?

Play bridge!

Conveniently, Warren resides steps from the Midwest’s finest tournament; (arguably, best in the nation!) The Nebraska Regional offers daily free lunches and late night ice cream treats, a chance to win Omaha Steaks, expert lectures, competitors from around the planet, a super schedule – and the opportunity to play bridge against Warren and Bill.

Warren and Bill have a passion for the game. “It’s got to be the best intellectual stimulation out there,” asserts Warren. “I spend twelve hours a week - a little over 10% of my waking hours - playing the game. Now I am trying to figure out how to get by on less sleep in order to fit in a few more hands.”

At the Regional, along with David Smith, Bridge Base Online principal and Bob “Mr. Bridge” Hamman, Bill and Warren competed in a variety of team and pair events. In one event, Bill and Bob racked up an impressive 67+% game.

Although Warren is always looking to “fit in a few more hands,” he and Bill find the time to give back to bridge – and society at large. During the Regional, in their “free time,” (ahem) – Bill and Warren’s latest project to “give back” was announced: The Giving Pledge. (www.givingpledge.org) Our bridge buddies are encouraging fellow billionaires to commit a majority of their wealth to philanthropic causes.

In-between matches, Bill and Warren assumed another role: model! Many of the players wanted to be able to go home with a “Bill, Warren and Me” photo. Smiling, the duo readily complied.

The Nebraska Regional is on Warren and Bill’s “must attend” list. Perhaps it should be on yours, too!