The 20 District 5 Rookies battled fierce Santa Ana winds as they competed in the District’s annual tournament at Ramon Park in Palm Springs January 23 & 24. The tournament had been rescheduled since the committee had checked the weather forecast for the original January 16 & 17 dates and they were right – it poured on January 16 and since this tournament was held on outdoor courts, the decision was correct. According to the television news, the Santa Anas were clocked at 45 miles per hour in and around the Palm Springs Airport on the first day of the tournament. Ramon Park is only a few miles from the airport. The Championship and Consolation Divisions were contested under beautiful blue skies and not a bit of wind the next day…. Ideal shuffling conditions which proves why we snowbirds winter in the Palm Springs area.
These die-hard rookie shufflers met District 5’s rookie qualification: A player must not have been involved in extended shuffling, either in organized or recreational play, prior to January 1st of the preceding year of the Rookie Tournament.
The rookies do not pay an entry fee to enter this tournament so to help offset the awards and wax costs, Dick Seburn from The Canyon in Cathedral City and the District 5 Desert Shuffler league donated $100 each. Five of the 9 District 5 shuffleboard clubs were represented at the tournament.
Championship Division Winners:
1. John Gordon, Ramon, Palm Springs
2. Bob Todhunter, Tri Palms, Thousand Palms
3. Liz Orem-Bedel, Ramon, Palm Springs
4. Gina Krumanocker, Ramon, Palm Springs
Consolation Division Winners:
1. Brenda Todhunter, Tri Palms, Thousand Palms
2. Noella Hoffman, Royal Palms, Cathedral City
3. Pierre Hachey, Royal Palms, Cathedral City
4. Virgil Petty, Palm Desert Greens, Palm Desert
Champion John Gordon was presented with the perpetual Rookie Plaque which is presented each year in memory of Gene Eager. The rookie tournament was Gene’s favorite tournament.
All of the 9 clubs in CSA District 5 participated in the annual District 5 vs 7 Challenge that was hosted Saturday, January 14, 2023, by District 5 at Royal Palms Shuffleboard Courts in Cathedral City. Forty players from District 5 played against District 7 players. Unfortunately some of the 40 scheduled players from District 7 weren’t able to make the trip so some of their players had to play 2 sixteen-frame games.
For the first time in many years, District 5 ended up with the most wins (25 wins out of the 40 games played). District 7 President George Hayner presented the Challenge plaque over to District 5 President Gary Adams.
This has always been a tournament the shufflers look forward to. Due to Covid and regulations by the Royal Palms facility management, the tournament was not held in 2021 or 2022 so it was nice to get together and visit and play against one another again.
Sixty-eight shufflers competed in the inaugural Gene Eager Memorial Mixed Singles Tournament on January 6 – 8, 2023, at Tramview in Cathedral City. Gene & Shirley’s daughters, Kim Whitcomb and Tina Reed, were present throughout the tournament and set up a display table with Gene’s picture and some of his major accomplishments. Gene started shuffling in 2008 and was the Indian Wells RV Resort Shuffleboard Club President since 2009. He was elected District 5 President in March, 2016, and had been elected President of the California Shuffleboard Association 2 months prior to his death on February 28, 2020. He was inducted into the California Shuffleboard Hall of Fame in 2017 and was a member of one of the 4-person teams that represented the United States at the 37th International Shuffleboard Assn World Shuffleboard Championship in High River, Alberta, Canada in 2018. In 2019, he metaled in the shuffleboard division of the National Senior Games in Albuquerque, NM.
The Champion of this tournament was Gary Adams who is Captain of the Palm Desert Greens Shuffleboard Hi-10 team and the current District 5 President. Also placing in the Championship Division were: 2nd: Joyce Carriere, Indian Wells; 3rd: Bruce Kiefert, The Canyon; and 4th: Bob Lausch, Tramview.
Consolation Winners were: Champion Val McDougall, Desert Crest; 2nd: Mick Guyette, The Canyon; 3rd: Dick Jenkins, Ramon; and 4th Jim (Pete) Peterson, Indian Wells.
Head Referee was John McCready, Tri Palms; Head Scorekeeper, Val McDougall, Desert Crest; Head Boardman, Gary Adams, Palm Desert Greens and ATM Shirley Eager, Indian Wells. All 9 District 5 clubs participated and volunteered their time for this special tournament.
District 5 held its first shuffleboard tournament of the season December 6 – 8 in Thousand Palms. The Tri Palms Shuffleboard Club members did an outstanding job of hosting the Men’s & Women’s Singles. There were 40 men and 22 women competing from 8 of the 9 clubs in District 5. The weather was great and the finals on Wednesday made us all realize why we like to spend the winter months in the Coachella Valley – not a cloud in the sky. What better way to enjoy a game of shuffleboard looking to the mountains through the palm trees.
Everyone who placed in the top 4 in the Champion and Consolation Divisions are added to the list of invitees who will play in the District 5 Tournament of Champions in March in Desert Hot Springs hosted by the Desert Crest Shuffleboard Club.
The shufflers are now looking forward to competing in a new tournament in District 5 in memory of longtime shuffler, Indian Wells Shuffleboard Club President, District 5 President and California Shuffleboard Association President, Gene Eager. District 5 is hosting the Gene Eager Memorial Mixed Singles Tournament at Tramview in Cathedral City January 6 – 8.
–Shirley Eager, CSA District 5 ATM/Secretary/Treasurer