6. 1 ♠♥♦♣ thing: Bridge — the card game — is starting to advertise
Bridge, the time-honored pastime of senior citizens (among others), has just begun a marketing campaign to attract new players, Jennifer Kingson writes.
- "Try bridge," a newly launched website exhorts, calling the cerebral four-player table game "fast-paced and stimulating but most importantly, fun!"
Why it matters: While empty-nesters and retirees are bridge's bread-and-butter, the game's governing body wants to recruit people of all ages — newbies as well as former players.
By the numbers: The American Contract Bridge League has 163,000 members, who compete in duplicate bridge tournaments nationwide, but that number doesn't include the countless people who play bridge just for fun.
- The majority of tournament bridge players are in their early 60s, married, with $200,000+ in income, a college degree or higher and no kids at home, an ACBL survey found.
- But more than 50 colleges also have ACBL-sponsored bridge teams.
- At any given time, about 50,000 people are playing bridge on their phones, tablets or laptops using apps and websites like Bridge Base, which hosts 1 million tables a year (= 4 million players).
To capitalize on the growing popularity of Eurogames (like Catan) among young people, Jeff Bayone, managing partner of the three big clubs in Manhattan (Honors, Cavendish and Aces), tells Axios he has just started up a Saturday afternoon board game program, run by local college students.
- "Once we get these kids in to a bridge club and they learn that bridge is the ultimate game," Bayone says, "we are hoping they will start to think about investing the time and energy and work into learning it."