Frequently asked questions
How Much Does it Cost to Play?
Each game costs $8. You can pay in cash or by check at the table. Alternatively, you can purchase a sheet of ten pre paid game tickets for $70 by signing up at the club or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org to order (your prepaid game ticket sheet will be available for pick up 1-2 weeks after you sign up).
Is There a Membership Fee to Join the Route 66 Bridge Club?
No. Instead, the Board of Directors would like to strongly encourage all players to join the American Contract Bridge League (ACBL).
Where Are You Located?
We are located in the Park Plaza Shopping Center which is on the NW corner of Sheridan and 61st Street. We are located directly behind the Rincon Mexican Restaurant. Look for the signs with our logo!
How Early do I Need to Arrive?
It is strongly recommended that you arrive 10 minutes before the start of the game to get yourself settled. Many players arrive even earlier.
Do I Have to Have a Partner?
Yes. Bridge is a partnership game. We are still arranging for game organizers to help you find a partner for a particular game.
Monday Day: Barbara Smith
Monday Eve: Becky Thomison
Tuesday: Frank Seres
Wednesday: Steve Mancino
Thursday: Carol Gammell
Friday: Greg Burton (director)
Sunday: Ted Meyers
Do I Have to Be a Member of ACBL (American Contract Bridge League) to Play?
No. But the ACBL is a terrific organization and there are lots of benefits from joining including a first rate monthly magazine and the ability to accumulate master points to attain various levels of proficiency. We strongly recommend that you give it a try. While master points can be earned by playing in various games, they won’t count toward any levels of proficiency unless you are an ACBL member. Points can be sent in retroactively if you join the ACBL a few days or weeks after your initial games. You do have be a member of the ACBL to play in ACBL tournaments (which are a lot of fun).
What Game Should I Play In?
The Route 66 Bridge Club offers a variety of games which are tailored for different experience levels.
The Saturday game is restricted to players with fewer than 100 master points and is part of the EasyBridge program. This game starts with a 15-20 minute lesson. These games are aimed at players who are brand new to duplicate (versus social or party bridge) or those who just want to learn to play. EasyBridge provides a structured foundation for the game and is recommended even for those players who may need to “fill in the gaps” in their knowledge.
The Monday afternoon, Monday evening, and Thursday games are restricted to players who have less than 1000 master points, i.e. to more advanced beginners and intermediate level players. There are optional classes before each Monday afternoon game. There is an extra cost for these classes.
The Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday games are open and unrestricted. This means that anyone can play in them (from someone who has no masterpoints to those who have more than 10,000 master points). In practice, most of the players in these games are the more advanced players in our club. We highly recommend that players who are new to duplicate start out in one of our restricted games. After all, we wouldn’t recommend that Mrs “I Just Learned How to Play Chess Yesterday” play in the same game as the Tulsa equivalent of Bobby Fischer. Any game is going to be more fun when you play against people who are at your level.
What is the Difference Between Duplicate and Social (aka Party) Bridge?
While both duplicate and social bridge use the same deck of cards, the same auction process (e.g. bidding one club or seven no trump) and the same way cards are played (e.g. in a clockwise direction with the winner of the previous trick leading to the next trick), the two games are surprisingly different. Social (party) bridge is more relaxed, casual, and social while duplicate is more competitive. In party bridge, you play different hands at each table (assuming there is more than one foursome) and your opponents are the couple sitting the opposite direction. You seek to earn the highest possible score in absolute terms from bidding and making contracts and setting your opponents. In duplicate, you play the exact same cards as the other pairs sitting your direction and your real opponents are those other pairs sitting your direction rather than the other pairs you play against at the table. The goal is to do better than everyone else sitting your direction; this can be achieved through playing the hand or defending. Thus, the scoring is relative to what the other pairs sitting your way were able to earn. For example, earning a minus 100 might actually be a great score if the other pairs sitting your way all earned minus 200. This means duplicate bridge is more a game of strategy and skill and less of chance. Other major differences include: use of bidding boxes (cards denoting bids are placed on the table rather than spoken out loud), expanded use of artificial bids (also known as conventions), use of a formal Game Director to enforce the Laws of Duplicate Bridge (e.g. what happens if you lead out of turn or fail to follow suit when you have a card in that suit) and, here at Route 66, use of electronic scoring devices to make scoring faster and easier. The Game Director will establish a set number of hands (called boards) to be played per game (usually 18 to 27) and players need to play all of those hands whereas a game of party bridge may end when the players feel like calling it quits for the afternoon or evening (it doesn’t matter if one table played 16 hands and the other only 8). After a few games of duplicate most of our players find that they can’t really go back to party bridge! Duplicate is just too much fun.
Is the Route 66 Bridge Club the Same as ACBL Unit 158?
No. The Route 66 Bridge Club is one of nine clubs which comprise ACBL’s Unit 158 which covers northeastern Oklahoma (Tulsa area, Claremore, Bartlesville, McAlester, and Muskogee). While we are the largest club in Unit 158, we are not the same entity. We do work closely with the unit (e.g. by posting Unit 158 information on a bulletin board at our facility, storing Unit 158 tournament supplies and by hosting several Unit 158 member events). Several of the directors on the Route 66 Bridge Club Board also currently serve or have served in some capacity for the unit. All of the directors on the Route 66 Bridge Club Board are members of the ACBL and Unit 158.