Social trump card: Gates at your place for a bridge party



By Jack Broom
Seattle Times staff reporter
Full story Click Here

For years, you've been wondering how to get Bill Gates to stop by your place for a quiet game of cards.

Stop wondering. The Microsoft chairman and budding tournament-bridge player will come to your house for an evening of bridge if you're the successful bidder next month at an auction to benefit programs at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

"In expert circles, he is thought of as a guy who is up and coming, who is learning quickly," said Bruce Keidan, national spokesman for the American Contract Bridge League. "He not only has analytical skills, but he's got imagination."

The Oct. 19 event, a musical-comedy revue called "There's No Business like Bridge Business," is presented by a group of local bridge enthusiasts called Seattle's Only Bridge Burlesque. In addition to the show, the $40-a-head event features a dinner and live auction at the Best Western Bellevue Inn.

The bidder who lands Gates gets a bonus - one of the biggest names in bridge. Coming along with Gates for the bridge evening will be Paul Soloway of Mill Creek, a professional bridge author and instructor. A former world champion, Soloway has won more master's points than anyone in the history of the game. The winning bidder can invite up to five players for two tables of bridge.

Soloway, who has played against Gates, said, "He's climbing the track. He's not the most sophisticated player, but for what he knows, he does very well."

Gates has competed in several tournaments and "surprisingly, people have given him his privacy," Soloway said. Gates was among the competitors in the mixed-pairs event at last month's World Bridge Championships

Carole Yager, a director of next month's show, said Gates was asked to be part of the bridge benefit by a local player who knows him. For ticket information, call 425-746-9244.

Jack Broom: 206-464-2222 or


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Last Updated November 1, 2002
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