Martha Bodie doesn’t get a pass for her role in founding the Down-Two Bridge Club.

“I have to work hard to stay in the group,” she said at a 10th anniversary competition earlier this month at the Oconee County Senior Center.

Bodie is the queen of bridge, said Bruce McKenzie, who when asked how he was doing mid-tournament, chuckled and said, “None of your business.” 

“I have the afternoon to catch up,” he added.

Karen Lange encourages novice players to shadow a seasoned competitor.

“There’s a million ways to play every game,” said Lange, who is in it for the fellowship, not the prizes.

In September 2006, it was advertised in The Oconee Enterprise that bridge classes were being offered at the Oconee County Senior Center, located at the time at the county annex building on Greensboro Highway. 

Instructor Anne Hansen soon had about 40 students, but a core group of eight formed the “Down-Two Bridge Club.”

Two of the original eight—John Roberts and Al Cumming—have died, said Lange, one of the original members. 

“When the annex building was closed for the holiday, Joan Hoffman invited us to play at her home,” said Bodie. “We continued to rotate amongst our homes until Al announced the owners of Ashford Manor had invited us to play at the bed and breakfast each Monday.”

The original eight members then moved into the new senior center in November 2008.

“Over the past 10 years, there have been at least 50 members passing through,” said Bodie. “At present, we have 40 plus people who play regularly, once or twice a week.” 

For more on this story, see the Oct. 20 edition of The Oconee Enterprise, on sale now at convenience stores and grocery stores and newspaper boxes throughout Oconee County. To subscribe, go to oconeeenterprise.com or call (706) 769-5175.

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