COLORADO SPRINGS — All the comebacks from COVID-19 are important, but an opening that just happened has perhaps added significance. The first reported Colorado Death from the virus and one of the earliest outbreaks was linked to a card tournament at the Colorado Springs Bridge Center. More deaths followed. “We had to close down because of the pandemic for 481 days,” said club, Vice President, Howard Donaldson. The center just reopened and club members are back competing at the bridge tables.
"We lost friends it was very, very traumatic," said club member, Roger Williams. He and his wife Murlene also got sick. “We got COIVD way ear on, probably from playing bridge. Despite the negatives he said, “We missed it during the time it was shut-down.”
Memories of fellow club members who died are both tender and a motivation for many of the returning players. “It's still hard to think about the people we lost,” said bridge club member, Phoebe Lostroh, “We also know the best tribute to them that we can have or do is to rebuild our community and come back together."
There are safety protocols in place for the reopening. "We are dedicated to coming back even stronger than we were before," said Donaldson. There is disinfectant at every table, the ventilation system checked, and full vaccination is required for every participant.
The post pandemic plan also includes inviting the community to come play bridge. "We want to conduct classes. We want to conduct more bridge sessions." The goal is not just surviving the COVID crisis, but also coming back stronger. Williams said simply, "We're thrilled to be back."