ACBL Unit 539
San Diego

Serving the San Diego Bridge Community

Welcome Back Game on Feb 5th, 2023

In the not so long ago past, the Sunday unit game was a wonderful way of playing the game we love while visiting with people we had come to know as friends. It was something we took for granted. During Covid, our unit's online bridge game really helped a lot of us stay in touch with one another. Covid was also a time where newer players started learning the game but had limited access to in-person play. Now that we are vaxxed and boosted and things have settled down, we have seen our Sunday table numbers start to increase and it's been like a family reunion of sorts to see people return. To celebrate this and to reach out to those who haven't yet taken that step, we are having a Welcome Back/Introduction game on February 5.

Come celebrate with us. Pizza + a $5 card fee if you RSVP by Feb 4 + a lesson with Wirt + door prizes= a great way to see folks you've missed and to start 2023!

If you need a partner or you want to RSVP, please email Proof of vaccination required and will be checked if this is your first visit back.

Card fee is $10 if you did not RSVP by Feb 4.

 See Flyer

San Diego Hosts Its first Sectional In 3 Years

Finally, an Open Sectional is on the horizon! After a three-year hiatus, we are very excited to bring to you our first sectional since March 2020! We are ready, and we hope you are! Unit 539 will be making its grand return to the Sectional world on Friday, March 3rd, and Saturday, March 4th, 2023. The venue will be a new one - St. Gabriel's Catholic Church in Poway; the church hall is very large, so ample space to spread our tables out; parking is plentiful, and the hospitality will be awesome.

You'll have a choice of pairs games on Friday, so whether you're a 299er, a 1499er, or an Open player, you can find your slot. Two games will be offered, at 10:00AM and 2:30PM with a lunch break in between. Not much is available nearby so take advantage of our $7 box lunch which will include a croissant sandwich, chips, and a cookie provided by no other than our favorite caterer, San Diego Catering. Sodas will be available for purchase. Snacks will be available compliments of Unit 539 throughout the day. Saturday will see the return of Teams, a popular event: Strati-flighted for A/X/Y and Bracketed round robin for 0-2000 MPs. We will also offer single-session pairs sessions at 10AM and 2:30PM. Lunch is included in the Swiss entry fee on Saturday since it's essentially a playthrough format. We're keeping the box lunch price at a reasonable $7, to avoid the very high charges of a hot meal. Again, no worries! Snacks will be on hand all day, and the church hall has a great coffee station! We are maintaining the $12 entry which is very competitive compared to the $14-$16 entries of other SoCal sectionals!

If you are playing pairs on Friday and Saturday, it would really help us if you could RSVP for the $7 box lunch since it's hard for to us gauge attendance and we don't want over-order! Email Lamya at with a simple "Yes - Friday Box Lunch", Yes - Saturday PAIRS Box Lunch". Again, lunch is included in the Swiss event entry fee.

A great opportunity not to be missed - a competitive field at all levels; silver points galore, and a chance to catch up with old friends. ACBL safety protocols will be in place, masks and hand sanitizers will in available. Please respect your opponents' wishes if they ask you to mask up.

Looking forward to seeing you all on March 3rd and 4th. Make calls, line up your partner and team, and come and play some bridge! Selby Winkler will be our partnership chair, looking to match you with a partner or team. Check out the flyer for more details.

 Sectional Flyer

Joint Non-Life Master Sectional - September 2022

The Non-Life Master Sectional held September 24 was the joint effort of Units 539 and 549. Tournament chairs Alan Turner and Mary Rea and many volunteers worked to make this event a success!

There were 19 tables in the morning and another 11.5 tables in the afternoon. In the morning Group A game, Nancy Busher and Bill Walsh won N/S, and Joan Gershman and Alan Turner won E/W. In our morning Group B game, Ellen Michaud and Ann McGregor won N/S, and Becky Aarestad and Lifun Cohen won E/W. In the afternoon game, Kevin Dolan and Gordon Richie won N/S, and Sue Halfaker and Susan VanCott won E/W. Congratulations to all the winners.

We are also very pleased to report that we also had several newcomer tables with 0-20 masterpoints.

We are looking forward to working with Unit 549 to have more combined events in the future.

Unit Game Update

Our face to face Unit Game is growing! Although not yet back to our pre-COVID levels, we have hit 12 tables and hope to continue to grow this game at Soledad Club. We offer a light lunch and a chance to play live with old friends and to make new ones. Come join us and bring your bridge friends!

The online 499er game did not reach a critical mass so has been discontinued for now. We would love to offer a 499er game live at Soledad if we could reach enough tables. If you would be interested in being part of a live 1499er or 499er game or an online game or both, please email

The Longest Day 2022

Unit 539 continued our strong support for The Longest Day-ACBL's charitable fundraiser for the fight against Alzheimer's . This year the Unit raised $11,145 for the worthy cause.

We sponsored an auction for many of the local pros, who have continued to support the fundraising efforts, but this year we added a unique bidding opportunity-both Zia Mahmood and Mark Itabashi agreed to play an online match partnering with their respective successful bidders. The match was played on September 15, kibitzed by over 200 bridge players on BBO with commentary by Rick Roeder and John Jones.

Thanks to all who contributed this year!

New Teaching Library Page

We are thrilled to announce that Maritha Pottenger's teaching articles are now available on our Unit 539 website.

Please click on the "Teaching Library" menu item or link below, to access her abundant library of teaching articles on: Defense, Declarer play, Bidding.

Maritha Pottenger has been a beloved teacher and a very successful player in the San Diego area for many years. She became a Platinum Life Master (10,000 points) last year. When asked why she teaches bridge, she responded:

I love teaching. Teaching really helped my bridge game. I had to clarify principles that were not clear when explaining them to other people; definitely a great way to improve my own bridge logic and inferences.

Bridge is the ideal game- because you can never learn it all. Each hand has something instructional to offer. Each partner offers another point of view. Psychological principles operate at the bridge table as they do throughout life. Bridge is endlessly fascinating and I adore it!

As she was retiring from teaching, she volunteered to share her teaching notes with all. You can review any of the conventions you are considering adding to your repertoire with your partner or just choose to study to improve your defense or play of the hand.

Thank you Maritha!

Teaching Library

San Diego Unit 539's Unit Game Results

The San Diego Unit is resuming face-to-face bridge at the Soledad Club at 1:00 PM. You must be vaccinated to participate. You must wait to be checked at the entrance; however if you participated in the San Diego Unit Game on May 15th face-to-face: you don't need to present proof of vaccination because we already have you on a list.

We will go back to offering mini bridge lessons prior to Unit games if there is enough interest.

Results for Sunday, January 15th:


Overall Winners


Open Pairs(Flt A)

Kit Humphrey - Henri Farhi


Open Pairs(Flt B)

Janice Joerger - Bridget Poizner


Open Pairs(Flt C)

Mark Hartzell - Wayne Sottosanti


For full results click on the "Calendar and Results" item on the left menu of this page.

2022 ACBL Event Schedule

Plan ahead... click on the link below to see the 2022 schedule for online Event Schedule. Please note all events tentative based upon BBO/ACBL IT capabilities and COVID-19 protocol changes

ACBL 2022 Event Schedule.

Sunday, Jan 29, 2023


San Diego Unit Open Pairs - Soledad Club

Will You Play With Me?

From the musical Bridge Confidential
Book & Lyrics: Joanne Gray, Music: Peter Mansfield

Online Directory Drive

One thing we are certain of is that everybody likes a complete phone and email directory. Our goal is to have one San Diego directory shared by the five units in San Diego County. It is online, since a paper directory is not cost effective unfortunately. With your help, we can get there. Again, we can't publish your contact details without your written approval, so just send an email to contact one of your Board members to share any contact changes with us.

Online Directory

Get Your Results As Soon As They're Available!

Unit 539 is publishing the game results on

To make the best of BridgeResults features we recommend that you register your email address (if you have not done so already). This will allow you to receive notifications by email when the results are published, to have your name highlighted when you look at the results, and many other features.

You can also upload your photo to BridgeResults to be added to our galleries of players.

Latest News!

Unit 539 News by Kathy Byrne

Monthly column for the D22 Connection.

Remember in last month’s column when I promised more details about the Spring Sectional? Your sectional wishes have come true! We are finalizing our plans for a San Diego Unit 539... [...]

Read the full column in the PDF document below.


January 2023 Column (68 KB)


December 2022 Column (175 KB)


November 2022 Column (110 KB)


October 2022 Column (61 KB)


August 2022 Column (63 KB)


July 2022 Column (67 KB)


June 2022 Column (91 KB)


May 2022 Column (64 KB)


April 2022 Column (15 KB)


March 2022 Column (12 KB)


February 2022 Column (117 KB)


January 2022 Column (90 KB)

D22 Monthly Online Magazine

ACBL District 22 presents its monthly online magazine


Click here to read the latest edition

Enjoy reading about the achievements of your fellow players, and so much more!

Looking for Partners for Unit games?

Our website has a Partnership Desk feature - Just select the Navigation Tab on the left of this page, enter your basic profile, and our partnership chair will start searching for a match! Try it, and let us know what you think!

Alternatively, if you decide last minute that you're looking for a game, just contact Lamya Agelidis, 615-887-1012, our Partnership Chair, who will be happy to get you a partner for Unit Games!

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