Best Place To Play Shuffleboard - 1999
Aboard a cruise ship
There's something to be said for regression. When (and if) a person reaches a certain age, he or she likely begins re-enacting youthful behaviors: hanging out with the gang, playing some game or another, or killing time before time kills them. Shuffleboard, the civil sport of the retirement set, perfectly suits this enterprise, reinvigorating the mind, body, and soul. All of which is fine for the geezers of Broward, where disk-shoving can still be found on land (there's a tournament in Hollywood and courts at dozens of condos). But in all of South Florida, there is only one court maker and only one retailer of cues. Susie Day of Hollywood's Beach-O-Rama, the equipment seller, sums it up: "It's a small, little market." With the graying of America, it's about time to resurrect the dying pastime outside the world of Fort Lauderdale fogies. The best bet, if you're not just being childish and really want to get into a game of skill, fun, and patience that isn't golf, is a cruise. Most major cruise ships have shuffleboard courts where you can soak up the sun and breathe sea air while showing your stroke to a broad demographic cross section. Travel agents recommend Carnival, which has thirteen ships, all with shuffleboard. Most other major liners also feature courts. (Beware day trips like Discovery; most do not offer the venerable game.) There's one catch, though. It ain't cheap. The most affordable rate on a three-day Carnival trip runs upward of $400 per person.