I just returned from Del City, OK and
the Heartland Handicap.
Since I have been asked back as the
auctioneer for this years SW Open I have been talking to a lot of
players at other tournaments, and have heard the same concerns over
and over again. The most frequent being that the boards won't
be playable because everyone thinks, as I did, that they were being
kept in the "tool shed" and exposed to the harsh heat and cold
changes that occur in Oklahoma year round.
I'm VERY happy to report that the new
Commander of the American Legion, Norm, has much more affection for
the tradition of The SW Open than anyone realized, and has put more
effort into seeing that it goes off well than even I would have
imagined. He has moved all of the boards into a new section of the
legion hall, already in the cradles, and on moveable dollies. They
are kept at a fairly consistent temperature and humidity.
We had six boards for the Handicap
tournament and they all played very well. Norm has really put a lot
of effort into this, and it will make for a much quicker, easier
setup time, thus giving Johnny Wayne, and whomever assists, more
time to adjust them.
I feel certain that the boards will be
better than "just playable" and hope that this news will help
players, who might otherwise have been thinking of passing on the
July tournament, a good reason to reconsider.
As always, I look forward to seeing
everyone who can make it.