VIRGINIA BEACH — The competition is sure to be fierce, turning friends into foes and turning neighbor against neighbor.
Or probably closer to the truth: Come on down to Beachside Social, join the fall shuffleboard league, make new friends and play some fun-but-competitive shuffleboard while enjoying cheap beer and new cocktail creations.
The oceanfront business is currently registering teams for league play, which will begin Sept. 26 and continue on Wednesdays through Nov. 14, with a break for Thanksgiving followed by one more night of heated competition that will crown a first-ever league champion.
“For those that haven’t played before, a typical shuffleboard game takes about 15-20 minutes,” said Livia Patel, who owns Beachside Social with her husband Ashish. “Each team will go head-to-head against another team each week in a best-of-three series and the series winner will receive one overall win for the week.”
She said they’ll also track the number of individual games won each week and total wins will be used as a tie-breaker if needed. But regardless, all teams will be playing all three games during the matches.
The top three teams will make the playoffs along with a wildcard team to make it a four-team playoff.
While complete details can be found online, some basics include: Teams should be a minimum of four players and a maximum of eight, but only six will play on a given night.
Games will begin at 7 p.m. and play will last about an hour. During the evening, drinks and food will be available and a DJ will help with entertainment. Players do need to be 21-plus, but otherwise it’s open to all ages and play is co-ed.
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“This league isn’t just for people who’ve played shuffleboard before. No experience is needed. Shuffleboard is very easy to learn, even for those who are not athletically inclined,” Patel said.
Although it’s “just a casual league,” she said teams are encouraged to be competitive and showcase their skills. If someone is interested but doesn’t have a team, Patel said they can register as a “free agent” and a team will be created for them.
On Nov. 28, league-closing festivities will take place, which will include the playoffs, a variety of challenges, and the crowning of the victor.
For those who sign up before Sept. 7 the cost per team is $160 and $40 for a free-agent.
“On league nights we will also have drink specials, DJs, and fun themed nights,” Patel said. “Halloween also happens to be on a Wednesday this year so we’ll be making that night extra special.”
She said they’ll also have a best team uniform contest at some point during the season.