Silicon Valley Youth Bridge

Summer Camp 2015


Session One
July 20-24. All levels of experience welcomed!
29 campers aged 9 to 17
14 beginners
24 tournament participants

Session Two
July 27-31. Continuing students or equivalent experience.
34 campers
16 returning campers
32 tournament participants

28 volunteers (both sessions combined)

Silicon Valley Youth Bridge (SiVY Bridge) held its second bridge camp for young players July 20 through July 31, 2015. This year, Bridge Camp was divided into two sessions of one week each, with campers offered the option of attending one or both weeks. The goal of the camp was to provide a casual and social atmosphere for introducing beginners to the game and for coaching more experienced players in advanced techniques.

One of our campers tells us how he learned about bridge.

Session 1

In this first week, campers played with fly swatters and beanbags, juggling balls and jigsaw puzzles. They ate food too healthy and beautiful to be called "snacks" prepared by by Qing Lu, one camper's mom. They heard Larry Cohen telling them how to score minus 7,000 and showing them a lead that cost 26 tricks. You wouldn't have thought they'd have time to learn about bridge when they were having so much fun, but clearly they must have. Several of the trophies for the Friday night tournament were won by campers who had never played bridge before the week began.

The whole story including pictures and tournament results.

Session Two

The 16 returning campers from Session 1 were joined by 18 new faces for the second week of Bridge Camp. Campers in this session received instruction in more advanced card play techniques and more sophisticated bidding methods. They continued to express enthusiasm for playing bridge with their friends, new and old, and for the excellent snacks prepared by Qing Lu, the mother of one of the campers. The juggling balls disappeared, but didn’t seem to be badly missed, as the campers concentrated quietly on applying what they had learned. On the last day of camp, all but two of the campers played in a duplicate tournament, and six pairs of them received trophies for their accomplishments.

The whole story including pictures and tournament results.

Our Wonderful Volunteers

Bridge Camp, like all SiVY activities, was an all-volunteer effort. In addition to Randy Ryals and the lead teachers (Debbie Rosenberg, Kevin Rosenberg, Elianna Meyerson, and Frank Smoot), twenty-eight other volunteers were involved, either as table mentors or in performing the many other jobs required for smooth operation. Camp would not have been possible without their efforts.

Special thanks are due to Qing Lu, the mother of one of the campers. The food she prepared for both sessions was one of the highlights of Bridge Camp, for both campers and volunteers. Also special thanks to Unit 503 for allowing use of the bridge club for the Friday Tournaments and throughout the week.

If you would like to contribute to SiVY's efforts to introduce young people to the challenge of bridge, consider joining us as Volunteer or making a tax deductible Donation.

Responses to Camp

In responding to surveys asking about their experience, almost all campers said that they liked Bridge Camp "a lot"! Their favorite part of Camp was once again "playing bridge." One camper even suggested that the best way to improve would be to eliminate the breaks. Few campers seemed anxious to leave at 5 PM, and many seemed content to keep playing until 6 PM or beyond.

Several parents thanked Randy Ryals, who was in charge of Bridge Camp administration, for organizing such a great activity for their youngsters. One mother commented on how her sons spent dinnertime talking excitedly about what they had learned that day. Some parents expressed an interest in learning the game themselves, so that it could become a family activity.