Playing the Hand You’re Dealt

Over the course of 11 days, an estimated 300,000 hands of bridge will be dealt to the 5,000 enthusiasts who have come to New Orleans to compete in The Spring North American Bridge Championship (NABC).

From March 12 to 24, the American Contract Bridge League (ACBL) will host the NABC at the New Orleans Marriott and the Sheraton New Orleans on Canal Street – an event that will fill 11,000 hotel rooms across the city and is expected to have an estimated economic impact of $8.5 million.

For those not familiar with Bridge; it is a trick-taking game using a standard 52-card deck. It is played by four players in two competing partnerships. And contrary to popular belief, Bridge is not just a game played by seniors. The game, according to the American Contract Bridge League, is increasing in popularity among the 20 to 30 year age group.

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For the New Orleans based NABC, players will be coming in from 15 countries – highlighting the ACBL worldwide membership, that is up around 167,000.

The NABC offers opportunities for everyone to play daily, whether they are beginners or professional Bridge players. Plus a range of seminars and meetings are scheduled throughout the 11 day event for anyone interested in expanding their Bridge knowledge; from becoming a club and cruise director, to instructor accreditation courses, to daily presentations by celebrity speakers – some of whom are the best known players and teachers

For those wishing to learn how to play their hand right, a “Learn Bridge in a Day” session that teaches the basics of the game to beginners is being held on Sunday, March 15 from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Sheraton New Orleans. $15 pre-register or $20 at the door.

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If you already have the basics down pat, the games of all levels begin on Thursday, March 12 at 1 p.m. and will continue through to Sunday, March 22, closing with a 2:30 p.m.  Beginner players who have 0 to 20 master points can play free.

To learn more about the Spring North American Bridge Tournament visit


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