By David R. Cohen
Want a cure for the Monday blues?
The Bridge Club of Atlanta (www.bridgeclubatlanta.com) is hosting a full day of bridge Monday, June 22, as part of the Longest Day, a nationwide fundraiser against Alzheimer’s disease. Festivities begin at 7 a.m. and continue until 8 p.m. at the Sandy Springs club.
More than 400 people are expected to attend and play bridge during the Longest Day. More than a week before the event, the Bridge Club had raised $38,000 of its $50,000 fundraising goal through sponsorships and donations. All the money will go toward Alzheimer’s prevention, research and treatment.
“This event is important to me because my mom was diagnosed a few years ago with Alzheimer’s,” said Jewish community member Sam Marks, the owner of the Bridge Club of Atlanta. “Many people have a family member or know someone with this horrible disease. It really impacts everyone.”
The Longest Day is a national event held on the Longest Day of the Year by the Alzheimer’s Association. It stretches from sunrise to sunset to symbolize the challenging journey faced by people with the disease and their caregivers.
The Bridge Club of Atlanta first participated in the Longest Day last year when it raised $28,000, the fourth-largest amount of any club in the country.
Participants can play in one or all games during the day, with $2 from every paid $10 entry going directly to the Alzheimer’s Association.
The Bridge Club of Atlanta has been open three years, and Marks said around 50 percent of players are Jewish. Marks, who grew up in Augusta, is a member of Young Israel of Toco Hills.
He said bridge is a game the Jewish community has always embraced.
“From the early days of bridge,” he said, “Jews have always been a much larger percentage of players than their percentage of population. Some of the top bridge players of all time — Edgar Kaplan, Oswald Jacoby, Eddie Kantar — are Jewish. It’s an intellectual, competitive game. Israel has done very well in world competition, and one of the top pairs in the world right now is Israeli.”
Contract bridge is one of the world’s most popular card games and is a favorite among seniors.
In addition to the games all day June 22, the Bridge Club of Atlanta also will hold a silent auction with over 100 items and will offer food from Goldberg’s, Pasta Vino, Nancy G’s, Kroger and the Cafe at Pharr.
“It’s going to be fun,” Marks said. “The Alzheimer’s Association has chosen our club out of all the thousands of clubs in the country to film during our event and make a video about the Longest Day.”
What: Alzheimer’s Association’s Longest Day
Where: Bridge Club of Atlanta, 4920 Roswell Road, No. 33, Sandy Springs
When: 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, June 22