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700 Word Experts... (NSC 2002)



John D. Williams Jr.
sh@scrabble-assoc.com Yvonne Lieblein
yg@scrabble-assoc.com (631) 477-0033


Forget everything you know about those casual family SCRABBLE® games. It's now a high-stakes battle of words - at least for the 700 experts who'll descend on the San Diego Concourse August 17-22 for the biannual National SCRABBLE® Championship (NSC). They'll arrive from 40 states and 5 foreign countries, each armed with well-worn dictionaries and vast vocabularies. They'll play words without vowels (CWM, a deep-walled basin), words without consonants (AI, a three-toed sloth) and words with Q but no U (QOPH, a letter in the Hebrew alphabet). This is definitely not your grandmother's SCRABBLE® game as players vie for a $25,000 first prize and $90,000 in cash prizes overall.

"The tournament is a perfect balance of intensity and fun," explains John D. Williams Jr., Executive Director of the 10,000-member National SCRABBLE® Association, which is organizing the event. "Everyone plays seven hours of the SCRABBLE® game during the day, and then they play into the night just for fun and socializing. They can't get enough of it."

Page 2 -- National SCRABBLE® Championship 2002

Williams said that many top experts have memorized the 120,000 word Official SCRABBLE® Players Dictionary and often spend several hours a day studying word lists or practicing against a computer. The field at San Diego includes numerous past World and National Champions. Occupations range from lawyers and teachers to a forklift salesman and a professional stand-up comedian. Ages range from 11 to 90. The defending NSC Champion is Joe Edley, a writer and editor from Coram, New York.

"Over 40 million people play the SCRABBLE® game on a leisure basis," says Hasbro Games President E. David Wilson, whose company is underwriting the event, "but this tournament showcases the cream of the crop. It's like a giant SCRABBLE® all-star game." Wilson notes that the classic board game is more popular than ever, routinely selling over 2 million units a year.

The SCRABBLE® game has also caught the attention of Hollywood and publishing. Last's year best-selling book WORD FREAK by Stefan Fatsis has been optioned and four documentary films are in production about the colorful SCRABBLE® subculture.

Players at the NSC must have an official rating earned from one of the 200 local and regional tournaments held every year in the U.S. and Canada. For more information, visit the NSA website at www.scrabbleassociation.com or call (631) 477-0033.

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PO BOX 700, GREENPORT, NY 11944 (631) 477-0033 FAX (631) 477-0294

HASBRO is the owner of the registered SCRABBLE® trademark in the United States and Canada. © 2011 HASBRO. All rights reserved. "SCRABBLE® Brand Crossword Game" is the proper way to refer to this unique group of word games and related properties marketed by HASBRO. "SCRABBLE®" is not a generic term. To use it as such is not only misleading but also does injustice to the company responsible for the trademark's longtime popularity. All we ask is that when you mean SCRABBLE® Brand Crossword Game, you say so. 

The SCRABBLE® trademark is owned by J.W. Spear and Sons, PLC, a subsidiary of Mattel, Inc. outside of the United States and Canada. 

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