New Words – They love them in Wisconsin and Iowa

From Mike Johnson:


Here we are playing at our home in Decorah

Thanks to everyone for making the New Words Tournaments this weekend such a great success.  Here are the results.

La Crosse:
Div A  1st: Joe Gaspard, 2nd: Jason Vaysberg, 1st Performance Prize: Lynda Finn, 2nd Performance Prize: Mike Johnson, Best Upset: Carol Dustin
Div B: 1st: Paul Kyllonen, 2nd: Carol Gibbs, Best Upset: Barbara Besadny
Also congrats to our new player Lynn Wolter who earned her first WGPO tournament win this weekend.
We were able to raise $100 for The Center: Seven Rivers LGBTQ Connection as part of our event. Thanks to Ron Malzer and the UU Fellowship for kindly hosting us on Saturday.
Decorah:  1st: Jason Vaysberg, 2nd: Mike Johnson, 1st Performance Prize: Barbara Besadny, 2nd Performance Prize: Carol Gibbs, Best Upset Prize: Brad Williams (Barbara did upset Jason in the #10 over #1 game)
It was wonderful having everyone over to our new home with the great snowy view.
Here is a list of some of the new words we played this weekend:
Thanks to everyone who came, to those that donated special prizes (Mary Krizan and Lynda Finn) and especially to Jarret for all his help with lunch and logistics while we were playing! I will make sure to let everyone know when I plan another event.
Mike Johnson

It’s Springtime In Tigard

Einstein and UsIt was warm and sunny outdoors, but a bit chilly inside.  Nonetheless, we toughed it out.  Einstein looked on as a dozen of us faced off for six games.  Dave Johnson won Division A, Chris Mazucca won Division B.  Players contributed $60 to Word Cup V.

Bingos aplenty, and a lovely beach, but few blankets

Here's the beach.  Where are the blankets?

Here’s the beach. Where are the blankets?

Mid-March was sunny and warm in Indiatlantic, Florida.  This was much appreciated by those from Northern climes.  While not sunning or beach walking, twenty-five of us competed in the 16-round Great-Grandson of a Beach Blanket Bingo tournament directed by Susi Tiekert.  Ian Weinstein compiled a 15-1 record with a spread of 1565,  His wife diverted us all with her delicious brownies and candied pecans, while Susi provided an unending supply of chocolate-covered potato chips.  Way too many goodies!  Lisa Brown won Division B with 11 wins, +479.  See all results at

Bingo generators (Division A)

Bingo generators (Division A)

Minutes – Executive Committee and Board of Player Representatives Meeting February 15, 2015

WGPO Meeting Sunday, February 15, 2015, 1 pm, Raintree Room @ Doubletree by Hilton, Tempe, Arizona


Executive Committee – Stephanie Steele, Keith Hagel, Larry Rand

Board of Player Representatives – Ruth Hamilton, Steve Pellinen

Committee members − Dominick Mancine (via Google Hangouts)

Guests − Maliha Mahmood, Richard Moyer

WGPO Member Liaison – Melissa Brown

 Unable to attend – Bennett Jacobstein, Susi Tiekert, Janice Kaye

Moderator:  Keith Hagel


Meeting called to order by Keith at 1 pm

Word Cup 2015

Ruth shared a report of the Word Cup financial status.


Seed Money $1,500.00

Donations $    912.15

Entry Fees $    670.00

Excursion Payment $    400.00



Rebates owed  $      40.00

$4,000 more needed to reach 100 % payback goal

Ruth has set up a page on the website dedicated to all things Word Cup 2015. Highlights: There will be Collins division if enough players show interest. An excursion bus trip to Oregon coast is being planned; 4 people so far have paid for the bus trip.

Tech committee  

Dominick reported that a new web host has been put in place; Rick has moved the WGPO site over to the new server.

There was discussion of issues with timely updating of the ratings. Obstacles include coding problems caused by player records getting mixed up. Dom believes the new host will make it easier to upload tournament results to the database, and the new web host will enable the committee to work in a more collaborative environment. Players will not see anything different resulting from new web host. Dom could use assistance in doing ratings; Winter has expressed interest in supporting.

Steph asked if we’re moving in the direction of more automated rating system; Dom feels with Winter’s help on ratings and Henry help on the tech side, we are.

Phpbb will remain in place for membership, mailing, voting. Dom to investigate possible phpbb replacement.

Larry raised issue of more user friendly voting; currently there are limits owing to the phpbb tool.  Discussion to be continued with Henry, with consideration of possible modifications to phpbb or the use of an alternate tool.

Word Judge 2

Maliha is close to completion of the new word list, and plans on turning over the data to WGPO for posting on the website to be available to members. Maliha has hired a developer to work on an IOS application.

WJ3 is in the works to include US, Collins and Taglesh.

Next steps … Maliha can send list (PDF and text) to Henry. New words can be loaded from text file into the old version of Zyzzyva.

Word Judge for Clubs and Tournaments: the official WGPO word list for word game players in North America — 2-21 letter words: Agreement that it is up to Maliha to determine what if any copyright she wants to include on the list.

Larry spoke on behalf of the EC and BPR to say that WGPO thanks Maliha from the bottom of our heart for all her work and contributions to WGPO.

Treasurers report

Janice Kaye provided the following information:

Last year at this time we had $5613.72. We now have $5,932.92

Inflows: local club tourneys, private donations, silent auction Dells proceeds and overage of Madison auction

Outflows: silent auction Dells proceeds, paid entry for WC Denver Directors, Funding for WC Portland, and webhosting.

Note: the reason that the silent auction Dells is an inflow and outflow is because I deposited several checks which had to clear of course, and once they did, the proceeds went to WC Portland

Keith moved to accept the Treasurer’s Report, Larry seconded the motion, and it was agreed unanimously.

Word Cup 2016

Larry stated that the venue will be announced at or before WC2015. There was discussion of holding WC2016 Phoenix as well as other locations previously considered. (Note added following the meeting: At the conclusion of the tournament in Phoenix, Larry announced that the 2016 Word Cup will be held in Phoenix.)

Expanding Tournaments, Directors and Venues

Keith spoke of the board’s responsibility for due diligence in the present climate, stating that we have the opportunity to prove ourselves as a national organization. We need an action plan for expanding tournaments, directors and venues. Discussion to be continued.

Meeting adjourned at 2:30 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Melissa Brown, WGPO Member Liaison

We had fun – and some of us won – at Phoenix 31

The sun shone outdoors and some of us shone indoors.  Some of us didn’t, but we enjoyed the good company.  After 19 rounds, Maddy Kamen and Lisa Odom had 14 wins each and faced each other in the final game.  Maddy won.  In Division 2, Richard Lauder was Gibsonized after round 19.  The Lindas (Bianca and Stratton) took Divisions 3 and 4, respectively.



The players at work.






Steve and Lisa presented Barbara and Larry with a plaque.









img_2480Maliha Mahmood won the afghan raffle.  Gary Smart won the board created by Mike Stevens.  These photos and more are at


Word Cup 2016 – We’ll be in Phoenix

PoolToday, at the conclusion of the 31st annual Phoenix tournament, director and Executive Committee member Larry Rand announced that the WGPO Word Cup for 2016 will be held in Tempe, Arizona, at the Doubletree by Hilton hotel that hosted the tournament that just concluded.  It’s a lovely facility.  Those of us who spent a long weekend here are pleased at the prospect of returning.  Unlike the upcoming 2015 Word Cup in Oregon, this will be a summertime event.  The dates are July 29 for the Early Bird, followed by July 30 August 3 for the Main Event.