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2008 NATIONAL CROQUET DAY T hanks to everyone who entered the 2008 - DOC


									                                                    2008 NATIONAL CROQUET DAY

T        hanks to everyone who entered the 2008 National Croquet Day (NCD) competition. The winners
         were selected based on our 2008 goal -- “looking for events that will encourage NEW players to
         enter the sport of croquet and JOIN the USCA”. And because of this competition we now have
31 new USCA members! Way to go participating clubs!! Now, let’s see how we obtained these

The 1 place winner in this category is THE GRAND HAVEN CROQUET CLUB of Palm Coast, Florida. Their
November 8th event included a golf croquet competition and “skills” stations. The Club added 16 new
USCA members to our roster! They communicated to the entire community an invitation to learn this
“fabulously fun and challenging sport”. That same evening they held a dinner celebrating the day’s
events and “the joy of the game of croquet”. The club has increased their membership this year by 25
members, thus reaching a 90-member club. One of the reasons they believe their club has grown so
quickly is the user-friendly system they have in place for beginners to learn the basics of the game. They
offer free lessons and furnish mallets for the lessons. All members then joining the club are required to
join the USCA. And their learning continues with more classes, clinics and tournament play. President
Frank Benham and his club members will receive a full one-year paid subscription to “The National
Croquet Calendar” courtesy of Publisher and Editor Garth Eliasson. To contact the club call (386) 864-
7004; fax (267) 373-3915; or e-mail:

2nd place winner is THE CONFEDERATE HILLS CROQUET CLUB of Richmond, Virginia. This club continues
to do a fantastic job of showcasing the sport of croquet and encourages others to enjoy competition
along with their USCA membership. This year’s event held on July 5 focused on six-wicket croquet and 2
new members joined the USCA. Urchie B. Ellis is current President and can be reached at (804) 272-5923
or e-mail The Club conducts lessons at the County of Henrico Sports Center from
June to August. The club also joins other clubs in Virginia and West Virginia for annual tournaments.
Member Ben Evans was quoted in the Times-Dispatch as saying “I like the people I’m playing with. I
come out each Thursday; it’s like a passion. I wouldn’t miss it for the world.” Confederate Hills will
receive a fascinating DVD entitled “USCA History” donated by the USCA.

The Club obtained croquet “publicity” through:

            Richmond Times-Dispatch August 8, 2008, article “The witty play of six-wicket croquet” with 2
             pictures, lengthy article, brief rules review, and contact information;
            July 3-16,2008, Eastern Henrico Citizen newspaper of their upcoming NCD event;
            Worked with the County of Henrico Division of Recreation and Parks to include detail club and
             lesson info in their newsletter (April 30, 2008); and

2007 NationalCroquetDayWinners.doc                                                                   Page 1
       Sent news releases to 5 local television stations.


1st place goes to THE MISSION HILLS CROQUET CLUB in Rancho Mirage, California. In this Desert area,
the winter season doesn’t begin until mid November, so the Club decided to hold 2 different level
“schools” after their members returned to the lawns. The 1st school was “The School for High-
Handicappers”. The 7 students included those who had completed the “School for New Players” the
previous season and who were now ready to move on to American and Association competition. Each
four session course lasted half a day. Instructor was Len Lyon, serving in his 10th year as facilitator.

The 2nd school was the “2008 School for New Players”, which produced the 9 new USCA members plus 3
re-engaged members. The class met every morning for six days (over 2 weeks) and took the students all
the way from grips and stance & swing to advanced croquet techniques. Although they focused on golf
croquet, the students were introduced to both Association and American rules games. Club members
served as “coaches” in both schools. This year Chief Instructor was Dick Engebretson, who was assisted
this year by former instructor Len Lyon. The class concluded with a “demonstration” game of American
Rules between two experienced Club players. Publicity was provided through the Country Club’s
newsletter and events calendar. Mission Hills will enjoy for their prize the “Bob and Ted’s Break Play –
What You Need To Know” DVD compliments of Bob Kroeger and Ted Prentis. To contact the Club, call or
e-mail President Jim Butts (760) 328-9482 or e-mail: OR Instructor Dick Engebretson
(760) 328-1888 or

Dick prepared a series of handouts for the students:

       The Croquet Swing’s Seven Deadly Sins;
       Buying Your First Croquet Mallet;
       The Takeoff Shot vs the Split Shot;
       The Two-Wicket Tango;
       All that Confusing Croquet Terminology…Explained;
       “R.C. Cola”;
       A one-page “Golf Croquet” brochure – the game and how it is played; and
       Wicket Order.

2nd place to THE JEKYLL ISLAND CROQUET CLUB of Jekyll Island, Georgia. Because of their historic site
on which to play, their club chose to highlight “100 Years of Croquet”. They played three games; one
styled as a 1908, one as a 2008, and one as an International….including the appropriate attire! These
games were all played on the Jekyll Island Club Hotel’s Greensward, which is the site of the original club
house of the millionaires who owned Jekyll Island in 1908 and whose families wintered on Jekyll Island.
The Club served cookies and lemonade, provided by the Jekyll Island Club Hotel, courtside to players and

The USCA received 2 new members from their event held November 8th. The club received publicity
through the Jekyll’s Golden Islander on October 23, 2008, with a nice article and picture. The Golden

2007 NationalCroquetDayWinners.doc                                                                 Page 2
Islander wrote “People who come to Jekyll Island are creative, innovative, and possessed of leadership –
it applied to Jekyll Island Club members at the turn of the 20th century and it is still true today, 100 years

In addition the club held introductory lessons as follows:

       December 4th – Playing the Game and a Few Rules;
       December 11th – Ball Control and Some Physics; and
       December 18th – Strategy and Playing to Win.

President Iris Shadrick’s contact info is: (912) 635-2774 or e-mail: Their award
is a DVD titled “USCA History” donated by USCA.

Honorable Mention certificates go to:

Arizona Croquet Club – Phoenix, AZ (contact: Rory Kelley – (480) 990-1126 or e-mail:

Sandhill Cove Croquet Club – Palm City, FL (contact: Frank Menagh (772) 288-2726 or e-mail: ONE new USCA member!!

The Croquet Club of Dataw Island – Dataw Island, SC (contact: Joan Dietz (843) 838-7816 or e-mail OR Ellen Corbett (843) 838-3802 or e-mail: ONE new
USCA member!!

University Park Croquet Club – University Park, FL (contact: Ms. Georgeanna Zoros, 7671 Park Blvd,
University Park, FL 34201)

CONGRATULATIONS to our winners and thanks to all of those who entered the 2008 National Croquet
Day competition. We encourage you:

       to work with your local media to educate their readers & viewers about this fast growing sport;
       to encourage our youth – our sport’s future and;
     to work & gain NEW members for USCA in support of our sport.

We especially say ‘THANKS’ to our prize sponsors. Unfortunately, due to our downturned economy,
our prizes took a little hit. That’s why it is important to please support our sponsors when buying
croquet supplies!

Garth Eliassen, “The National Croquet Calendar” (503) 838-5697

Bob Kroeger (561) 478-0760

Ted Prentis (561) 478-0760

USCA Office, (561) 478-0760

Happy Croquet to all!!!

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Genie and Ron Hendry, Chairs

(760) 832-7681 OR

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