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Events and Tournaments

The Columbus Backgammon Club holds a number of different events each month that cater to different levels of interest in backgammon. These include:

  • Monthly Tournaments (usually at noon on the second Sunday of the month; May: third Sunday of the month to avoid conflicts with Mother’s Day)
  • Small Jackpot Events – single-elimination
  • Chouettes
  • Casual/Social Play (about 4 times per year) – no entry fee; designed for new players; informal play, rules discussions, etc.

Monthly Tournament Format

The monthly tournament will take one of two forms, based on the number of entrants:

With 6 or more participants, the format will be be a single elimination bracket with a consolation bracket for those knocked out of the main bracket. Match lengths are 7-point matches in the main bracket, with a 9-point final, and 5-point matches in the consolation bracket, with a 7 point final.

Payouts will be:

1st place (winner of the Main final) – 40%

2nd/3rd place tie (loser of the Main final) – 25%

2nd/3rd place tie (winner of the Consolation final) – 25%

4th place (loser of the Consolation final) – 10%

There will also be an optional $10 side pool available for anyone interested, where the last side pool participant remaining in the main flight receives 100% of the pool. You are eliminated from contention from the side pool after your first loss.

In 2018 we began an optional $20 side pool (rules similar to the $10 side pool).

With fewer than 6 participants, a round-robin tournament will be held where all participants will play against all other participants in single 5 or 7 point matches, depending on the time available. Payouts will be determined based on the number of participants. There is no side pool associated with the round-robin matches. Note that attendance has been high enough that we haven’t had a round-robin tournament since September 2014.

Registration is on the day of the tournament from 11:30 to 12:00 PM.  No advance registration or reservations will be taken. Entries will not be taken after 12:00 PM so that the tournament may start on time.

Duration: To help new players estimate the time commitment involved, for a field of up to 16 players the Main bracket final ends at approximately 5:00 pm while the Consolation bracket final ends at approximately 5:30 pm. For fields larger than 16 players, allow an extra hour to these times. (Only one tournament has ever had more than 16 players. The “special” February 2019 tournament, with added money donated by the US Backgammon Federation, had 21 players.)

Entry fee: $20 for most players, cash only

First-time discount: $10 entry fee for a player’s first “regular” Columbus monthly tournament (the February 2019 tournament is a “special” tournament; all the other monthly tournaments in 2019 are considered “regular” tournaments)

100% of entry fees will be returned in prize money. Prize awards and payout may be adjusted according to attendance.


What is a chouette? A Chouette is a social backgammon variant for more than 2 players, excellent for learning more about the game because of the discussions that can happen with each play.

Our chouettes are held at various times throughout the year (see sidebar for schedule). We currently use the rules published by the Atlanta Backgammon Club. These rules can be found here.

Open/Social Play

These events are for those who prefer to play backgammon in a less competitive or social environment, though we may hold no-cost beginner/intermediate tournaments during the same time. Lessons are available as well. Come on out and meet other folks who share your interest in backgammon!