Welcome to the Unit 484 Website!

Unit 484 is affiliated with the American Contract Bridge League (ACBLacbl logo small) which fosters the game of bridge throughout North America.  We are a member of District 20 (D-20 ), one of 23 North American districts under the auspices of ACBL.  Unit 484 is a non-profit organization in Jackson County located in Southern Oregon.  The bridge clubs in our unit run ACBL sanctioned games available for players of all levels in competitive yet friendly and nurturing environments.
Bridge games within Unit 484 are located in the Rogue Valley—home to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Britt Festival
We have several clubs offering games, excellent bridge instructors, games for players of varying levels and a bridge community of vibrant, interesting players whose goals are to have fun,make friends, improve their bridge, and to bid and make all their slams!

Announcements

New! Unit 484 Pro-Am Swiss Teams July 11.  Click here for flyer

Mark your calendar for the Rogue Valley Fall Sectional Oct. 16-18.  Click here for flyer

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 Let’s get acquainted with Maynard Vitalis

maynardvitalis

Maynard Vitalis, Triple Threat

A classical pianist, airplane pilot, and up-and-coming bridge player

By Jim Flint

MAY 25, 2015—Maynard Vitalis didn’t just jump into bridge with both feet. It was a three-phase experience.

His first taste was in the 1970s when his father gave him a book titled, “Five Weeks to Winning Bridge,” by Alfred Sheinwold.

“He said,’Read it, then teach us how to play bridge,’” Vitalis said. “I read it, then played bridge with my parents and my sister. That lasted for about two months.”

It wasn’t until 2006 a few years after he retired that he got back into bridge. That was phase two.

“I took lessons in Pleasanton (Calif.) with my wife Chris and we played in the beginners’ group at the Pleasanton duplicate club.”

That lasted six months.

Fast forward about four years for phase three, when they moved to the Rogue Valley.

 “It was about the time Bob Fox started his club (for non-Life Masters) and did some teaching before his Thursday games.”

He’s been playing bridge regularly ever since, in both the non-Life Master games as well as in the open games. Chris doesn’t play.

“She is a card shark and would be a killer at bridge,” he said. But the pressure of playing with others doesn’t appeal to her, he explained.

Vitalis enjoys several approaches to the game.

“I’m a systems guy. I play 2 over 1, Precision, and various conventions, depending on who my partner is. I like Precision. It allows us to find slams easier.”

What about bridge gives him the most satisfaction?

“I love defense,” he said. Finding that setting trick is particularly rewarding to him.

Anything frustrating about bridge?

“I’m surprised how often I’m wrong about how good a game we’ve had.” Sometimes what he thinks is a good game is much less so, and vice-versa.

Vitalis, 59, was born in Toronto. His family moved to California when he was 10 years old.

He is a graduate of USC with a double major in mathematics and music composition.

“I used to play the guitar, but I took up the piano when I was about 18 and now I play on my Steinway every day,” he said.

After graduation, he did some part-time accounting for Max Factor.

“I wasn’t really an accountant, so I went to school and took some accounting courses. It was about 1980 when computers came in that I learned to write programs so we could run our ledger system, skipping the old punch card step.”

He and Chris got married in 1984 and took a trip around the world. After that he worked for Charles Schwab in the Bay Area. That was followed by a job with a new start-up, CommerceOne, a pioneering e-commerce company founded in Walnut Creek, Calif.

It went public about five years later and tripled on opening day. The stock soared from 20 to over 600 in early 2000. Vitalis retired in 2001, doing quite well on his stock, avoiding the dot-com collapse that eventually led to the company’s filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2004.

Vitalis and his wife explored much of the West Coast before settling on the Rogue Valley for their retirement spot.

“We wanted access to the arts and a place not too far from the ocean,” he said. They live in South Medford. Chris, who retired a few years after her husband, is an environmental consultant.

Besides enjoying bridge and music, Vitalis is an avid pilot. He first learned on a glider after he retired. Then he graduated to powered flight in 2004 and got his instrument rating in 2006.

Today he owns a Cirrus airplane and flies 100-150 hours a year.

“It’s a state of the art, high-tech aircraft,” he said. Not only does it have all the bells and whistles, it is unique in that the plane itself has its own parachute, standard equipment on every model the company sells. If disabled, the plane can float safely to the ground on its deployed chute.

Now if somebody could just invent a bridge parachute to prevent going down in flames in an ill-advised contract.


 

 

 

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Notice:  The Site member directory has been updated.  Please send any additions/omissions/corrections to me at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  David

 

 

          Current ACBL Unit 484 Board Members

  • Terry Ansnes

Member-at-large 

2014/15

  • David Bryant

Member-at-large 

2014/15

  • John Cowles

President

2015/16

  • Sharon Fauss

Member-at-large

2014/15

  • Michael Pavlik

Secretary/Treasurer 

2014/15

  • Bob Scott

Member-at-large

2015/16

  • Neal Smith

Vice-President 

2015/16

  • Maynard Vitalis

Member-at-large

2015/16 

 

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