2021 Minutes

Bridge Studio of San Miguel

Board of Directors Meeting

December 13, 2021

The board meeting was called to order at 12:00 pm.
Present: Lynn Chambers, Faye Guidry, Keith Gunn, Del McDaniel, Mary Seggerman, Kathy Snodgrass and
Wendy Valentine
Play Dates and Game Characteristics
The Virtual Games are offering players an opportunity to stay in touch with partners and friends, while still
generating some revenue. The board agreed not to change the online game schedules or frequency at this time.
There was a discussion of the number of boards played in F2F games and the start time for the games.
Depending on the director, the game might be organized as a Howell or a Mitchell. When there are 9 tables, there will always be a Mitchell movement. If there are fewer tables, the director’s preference prevails.
Some people are concerned about games that end after 5:00 pm, so the board discussed whether to start the game at 1:00 pm or 1:15 pm. Faye moved that we start the game at 1:15 pm and ask the players to arrive by 1:00 pm. The vote was 5 in favor, 1 against and 1 abstention. The change will take effect after January 1st, giving players extra time to attend evening activities.
The board then discussed offering short lectures on specific bridge topics once a week before the game.
There could be handouts or the lecturer could just use a white board. We could post a list of topics on a
white board, so players could add to the list. We could construct a list of 12-15 topics and post them. Mary suggested “responses to a 2 club opener.” Del suggested that board members send Wendy suggestions, and she will build a list. We will then post these in the Bridge Studio, and invite players to add to the list.
Lease with the Arcada
Mary met with the Arcada manager this morning after a conversation last week. The terms of the draft lease are mostly acceptable with the exception of the use of the adjoining conference room when the game exceeds 9 tables. Faye suggested that the manager amend the lease with regard to the use of the adjoining conference room. We would agree to $800 pesos per use, the same amount charged before the pandemic. Mary will re-negotiate the terms relating to the use of the conference room. Mary will reserve the conference room for the Sectional.
The board also asked Mary to see if she can negotiate a different rate when we have a lower number of tables during the down months. Del suggested that Mary tell the manager that we don’t know how many players we’ll have during the pandemic. Keith said the ideal for the Bridge Studio would be to give the Arcade a percentage of the gross. Keith will work with Mary on the table count, so she can negotiate further with the manager.
Mask Requirements
Bridge Studio player Gordon Young emailed the board and made a compelling case for mandatory masking of players to provide extra protection against the spread of Covid. Faye made a motion that we require masks, effective Monday, December 20th. This policy can be re-evaluate as conditions change. The vote was six in favor and one opposed. Kathy suggested we begin this policy on December 20th. Five voted in favor, two against. The motion was passed.
Unit 173 Request for the Regional
Margarita, president of Unit 173, has asked for our help in finding tables. The board will send Margarita a
list of rental vendors and also offer to loan the Regional our tables.
Promoting Bridge in San Miguel
Lou Christine from VIP is working to add notices about the Bridge Studio. Kathy agreed to post our initial
games and explore outlets for our notices. We also need to reinstate weekly notices in Que Pasa/Atencion. Faye said when we start the lectures, we could add that.
Zero Tolerance Policy
The ACBL handout for clubs re Zero Tolerance. The handout discourages giving a warning. Kathy said that
we have a three-step process and confirmed the following steps: (1) a verbal warning from the director; (2) a written warning; and (3) a sanction/penalty. Upon notification of a verbal warning relating to Zero Tolerance, the director makes a written record of the incident and relays it to the Board. If there are additional warnings, Steps 2 and 3 are implemented, and a written record is maintained for all three parts of the policy.
The board further discussed the process for adjudicating allegations of cheating. When allegations are made in a public setting, i.e., a tournament or other ACBL sanctioned game, the Board must immediately refer these allegations to the ACBL. This is the requirement for a unit-sponsored club. Allegations of cheating are very serious, and sanctions may lead to either temporary or permanent suspensions from play in ACBL sanctioned games.
Status of the Sectional
The Sectional is scheduled for February 3-6, 2022. ACBL Sectional Director Michael Farebrother has agreed to direct the tournament for three out of four days. The first day, February 3, is devoted to non-Life Master players, and Woody McHarg has agreed to direct those games.

Bridge Studio of San Miguel

Board of Directors Meeting

November 16, 2021

The board meeting was called to order at 1:30 pm.

Present: Faye Guidry, Keith Gunn, Del McDaniel, Kathy Snodgrass and Wendy Valentine The minutes of the October 2021 board meeting were approved by voice vote.

Zero Tolerance Policy

Faye raised the issue of repeated play of the same boards on both Wednesday and Friday earlier in November. This repetition was discovered in the last round of play on Friday by Keith. Whether to let the results stand or to nullify the results was broadly discussed. The board concluded that it might be best to nullify the game on Friday and offer vouchers to all players who played on that day. In the end, the Director for Friday’s game decided to let the Friday results stand since this is ultimately the decision of the game Director. It was also true that the “movement” of the game was different on Wednesday and Friday (Howell vs Mitchell), so the play of the boards was varied.


The board noted that the Website (www.sanmiguelbridge.com) is nearly updated and is functioning well.

The board thanked Keith for his work on the website. He will revise the website announcement of the Sectional flyer to provide a more legible image of the daily events calendar. Also, Keith will add recent board minutes to the website. The interview with Barbe Poole, Unabridged, will be published on the website in the near future.

Finance Report

Keith reported that the Unit is cashflow positive, still earning fees from the online game (although not as much as when F2F bridge was not possible due to Covid), and we are current with all our suppliers. We recently made a decision to replace our Bridge Pads with Bridge Mates for reliability and functionality, a decision that many clubs around the world have taken and we will amortize that cost over some years. This purchase was slightly more than $4,000 US dollars, but the board believes it is an excellent investment.

Keith provided the board with a report on the increase in players as we approach the winter months. The Bridge Studio games are attracting 7-8 tables now, but there has been a slight drop-off in virtual players. The board is considering eliminating one of the virtual games, which might increase the numbers in the other two games. This would enable the Bordello to begin to offer a sanctioned game during the week.

Keith will put together figures for the virtual games, and we can make a decision at the next board meeting. However, even when we have to hire a director for a virtual game, the online game(s) continues to generate a small profit.

Open Positions

The board agreed to approach Lynn Chambers to join the board to fill the space left by Ian Irving.


The flyer for the February 3-6 Sectional is complete and has been posted on the Bridge Studio website. Nancy Stromeyer, president of ACBL District 16, agreed to include the flyer as part of an email that usually includes only Regional Tournaments. This was a one-time agreement to help Unit 254 during the pandemic.

A non-life master game will be offered on Thursday, February 3rd, directed by Woody McHarg. Friday and Saturday will be two-session open games, with a Swiss Team game on Sunday, including lunch.

The board agreed to meet on November 30th at The Arcada to discuss with Lynn and Tom Chambers activities associated with the February Sectional.

The board meeting adjourned at 3:00 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Wendy Valentine, Secretary

Bridge Studio of San Miguel

Board of Directors Meeting

October 12, 2021

The board meeting was called to order at 2:00 pm.

Present: Faye Guidry, Keith Gunn, Ian Irving, Del McDaniel, Mary Seggerman, Kathy Snodgrass and Wendy Valentine

The minutes of the June 2021 board meeting were approved by voice vote.

The Bordello Charity Game Suspended

Del indicated that while Phyllis Culp, founder of the Bordello Game, submitted her letter that she was ending the charity game and turning the three virtual games over to the Bridge Studio. Kathy reported on her conversation with Dan Sondergrath. He indicated he would be happy to direct a game at the Bordello on Thursdays under the auspices of the Bridge Studio. Faye noted that our request to Dan was to direct a 199er game, not an open game for all levels of players. Faye said perhaps someone else could direct a 199er game at the Arcada.

Keith broached two issues: (1) the Virtual Games, and (2) the Bordello Game. With regard to the online game, the Bridge Studio now runs all three games on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Keith looked at the list of online players, and they’re primarily Bordello players.

Mary suggested that we negotiate a financial arrangement with Phyllis to compensate her for her work to establish and run the Virtual Games for over 18 months. Keith will present this to Phyllis and report back to the board at its next meeting. The Virtual Games are averaging about 7.5 tables. At some point, there may not be enough tables to warrant ongoing Virtual Games. Mary suggests we charge higher game fees for online play. The going rate is $7, whereas we’re charging $4/game.

Keith asked whether there are any opportunities to pool virtual players to achieve a larger, more robust game? Multiple approvals (e.g., ACBL, local club owners, etc.) are required to accomplish combined Virtual Games according to Keith. Mary responded that combining these games isn’t difficult at all. We will consider this issue again at the next board meeting.

Wendy made a motion that as of November 1st, the Bridge Studio will raise the charge per game from $4 to $5/game. The motion was approved by voice vote.

The Need for Directors

Mary raised the issue of directors. Tom has left to go back to TX, and Mary will be in SMA only until mid-December. Woody is still recuperating from surgery, and he and Mary have been working in tandem when he directs. Mary will take care of the business end, and Woody will take all the director calls. Mary said we need more directors. Sandy Martin, who has moved to San Miguel from Puerta Vallarta, is going to become a director, which will be helpful.  Beth Rosener asked to become a director, and Mary will search for others as well. Keith said he will also become a director. Faye has offered to direct a 199er game when the time comes.

We are now offering Wednesday games, so Isabel is receiving $750 p each week with the three games.

BridgeMate Update

Bob Calt and Christie McGue have received the new BridgeMates and will drive them to San Miguel soon. In addition, we will be sure that we will install a timer on the computer.

Search for Venue Options

Kathy reported that Mary Katherine Wainwright is working with a rental agent. Faye talked with Noren, and she gave Faye a contact person, whom she’s waiting to hear from. The Biblioteca is not an option.

Website Update

Keith suggests that we try to make the site a little more interactive than it currently is. Wendy will schedule a meeting with Keith and Kathy for the week of the 18th to begin to update the new website. Also, Mary Katherine has agreed to once again assume the role of partnership chair.

Sectional Update

We need to set up a meeting with the Tournament Director and Manager (Tom & Lynn Chambers) to hand off the tasks associated with the tournament. Most importantly, the board needs to get the sanction for the Sectional dates. Del will pursue this with the ACBL.

Filling Needed Positions

We a vice president for the board now that Ian Irving has left the board, and Del McDaniel has accepted the presidency. In addition, there are many unit positions that need to be filled. We will discuss filling these positions at the next board meeting.

Alan’s Suggestions

The board discussed what we should do to discourage slow play. We need to be even-handed and fair. Del indicated that some clubs have two, five-minute breaks during the game.


           Keith: Survey and Website and Timer and Phyllis

           Faye: Further explore options for space in Centro

           Del: Find out status of the Sectional

The meeting was adjourned at 3:15 pm. The next board meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, November 16 at 2:00 pm SMA time.

Respectfully submitted,

Wendy Valentine, Secretary

Bridge Studio of San Miguel

Board of Directors Meeting

September 13, 2021

The board meeting was called to order at 11:00 am. Present: Faye Guidry, Ian Irving, Del McDaniel, Mary Seggerman, Kathy Snodgrass and Wendy Valentine (Absent: Keith Gunn)

The minutes of the August 2021 board meeting were approved by voice vote.

Ian’s Resignation as President

Ian announced this would be his last meeting given that he expects to be in Dubai for at least another 1-2 years. He said he’d enjoyed participating as a board member, as well as president. In discussing upcoming events, Ian noted that there is an ACBL District 16 meeting next month. We will need a representative who can participate and represent Unit 254. In addition, there’s a need to designate a board member to receive all ACBL electronic emails; Ian currently receives at least one ACBL email per day. This person becomes the filter regarding what is forwarded on to the board and/or SMA bridge players.

Keith was suggested as the electronic contact. Ian will remove himself from the ACBL website and will update this list.

The other board members thanked Ian for his excellent leadership. Faye nominated Del to be president of the board with Ian’s departure and, following the meeting, Del agreed to serve as president for the remainder of Ian’s term.

BridgeMates vs BridgePads

Mary reported that there hadn’t been a single day of F2F play when the BridgePads have all worked. The cost of purchasing 25 BridgeMates, including the server and the case is about $3,500 US. Faye moved that we purchase the BridgeMates and explore bringing them down to avoid shipping charges. The board unanimously approved the motion. Ian noted that perhaps there is someone who would be interested in purchasing the BridgePads. Faye volunteered to explore possible buyers.

New Website

Kathy indicated that she gets “Live for Clubs” from the Bordello. We need to explore how to do this. Perhaps Phyllis can help us, and Kathy agreed to inquire since we need a way to report results if we eliminate the Bridgewebs site and move everything to a single website. We will ask Keith if he would like to implement these changes, since he has website experience.

F2F Play

Mary reported that we’ve been getting about five tables on Mondays and Fridays, but she noted that it’s nice even with 3.5 tables. The Happy Hour after a recent Friday game was successful and everyone enjoyed it. Kathy asked whether we have or need to codify a hospitality function. Faye asked what the hospitality function should be and that we should define this function. Mary responded that we don’t yet know what we’ll need in the future. However, the function description is a board decision. Lynn Chambers is an excellent person to continue to do this if she agrees to continue in this role.

Ian suggested that we might have a regularly scheduled function for all SMA bridge players. We can host this as a Unit function. We could charge a nominal fee for refreshments.

Unit 254 Open Positions

This item was deferred to a future meeting. Kathy mentioned that these positions do not have to be filled by Board members and that one person can perform more than one function.


Mary indicated that she was unable to get the sanction for the Sectional. Del is the designated person to contact the ACBL to seek the sanction for January 28-30.

There are issues to be decided first. One issue is whether to include a 199er or 299er game on the Thursday before the Sectional, or whether to hold this game concurrent with the regular sessions on Friday and Saturday. Sunday is reserved for Swiss Teams.

The meeting adjourned at 12:30 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Wendy Valentine, Secretary