shuffleboard

shuffleboard, sport in which players use cue sticks to push disks onto a scoring diagram at either end of a concrete or terrazzo court. The court is 52 ft (15.85 m) long and 6 ft (1.83 m) wide. The bases of the triangular scoring diagrams are parallel to and 8 ft (2.44 m) from the court's end lines. Each diagram is 9 ft (2.74 m) long and 6 ft (1.83 m) wide at the base. Lines parallel to the base divide each diagram into 7-, 8-, and 10-point sections. Extending 1.5 ft (45 cm) below the base is a penalty area worth minus ten points. Each player uses four disks, each of which is about 1 in. (2.54 cm) thick, 6 in. (15.24 cm) in diameter, and weighs a little less than a pound (.45 kg). Play can be for two (singles) or four (doubles), and a winning point total is usually set at 50, 75, or 100 points. Probably originating in 13th-century England, shuffleboard is similar to curling. It has long been a popular recreation for the elderly and for cruise-ship passengers. The modern version of the game was introduced (1913) to the United States by hotel proprietors in Daytona Beach, Fla. The National Shuffleboard Association was founded (1931) to devise uniform rules for the rapidly growing sport. It also sponsors national championships for men and women.

See C. S. Haslam, How-To Book of Shuffleboard (2d. ed. 1965); O. C. Catan, Secrets of Shuffleboard Strategy (1967).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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