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KEEPING HER BRAIN ACTIVE WITH BRIDGE, MARION TURNS 106

SYDNEY CBD 5th August - Marion Rice, the oldest active bridge player in Australia, celebrated a big milestone on 5th August - her 106th birthday! She lives alone, does all her own housework and says she manages just fine. She said playing bridge keeps her mind sharp and fit, hence her longevity.

Marion began playing bridge more than 50 years ago, and continues to actively play bridge, known as a mind sport. Sydney Bridge Centre, affiliated to the NSW Bridge Association, organized a birthday party for her, along with a duplicate session (a form of bridge played in clubs and tournaments which largely eliminates the luck of the cards). Marion had a piece of the birthday cake during morning coffee and enjoyed her game as usual. She thanked the club and the members who played with her all these years, "It's the people that keep me going."

"We believe mental health is as important as physical fitness for well-being," Julian Foster, the Chairman of NSW Bridge Association said, "Not all mental activities are equal, the social component is crucial too. People meet friends here and enjoy a social game together - that's what bridge is about."

In recent years scientists have become intensely interested in what could preserve our mental sharpness. NeuRa (The Neuroscience Research Australia) has found that as people age, the brain's white matter (information pathways) deteriorates faster than grey matter. Professor Peter Schofield, Executive Director of NeuRa simplified the message to "use it or lose it".

NSW Bridge Association is a not-for-profit organization, committed to promote bridge by organizing classes, play sessions and tournaments. Over 150 bridge clubs are affiliated across NSW. The Association also organizes fun days and fund raising events to support NeuRA for brain research on Alzheimer's disease and NSW Stroke Recovery Association. If you are interested in learning bridge, please contact the NSW Bridge Association at (02)9264 8111 or office@nswba.com.au.

About The NSWBA

The New South Wales Bridge Association (NSWBA) is a not-for-profit organization and functions as a state umbrella association of over 150 bridge clubs across NSW. To encourage bridge as a mind sport and a social game, most of its resources are open to general public while some are exclusive to the affiliated clubs. The Association provides support for clubs, organizes state level tournaments and represents NSW within the ABF (Australian Bridge Federation). The NSWBA recently qualified 4 representative state teams (Open, Women, Seniors and Youth) to the Australian National Championships, held in Fremantle, WA in July 2015. The NSW Seniors' Team came back with victory and the Women's Team finished runners-up.

Chairman: Julian Foster

About The Sydney Bridge Centre

Sydney Bridge Centre is one of the major clubs in Sydney, with over 800 members. It meets at three venues, including Goulburn Street Surry Hills. It provides bridge classes, workshops, play sessions, fun events and tournaments to all levels of players, whether they are members or visitors. Its recent one-day workshop series has attracted more than 100 players to advance their skills.

Club Directors: Vanessa Brown and Will Jenner O'Shea

The New South Wales Bridge Association
Wing Roberts
Councillor, Promotion & Marketing
(02)9264 8111 or 0487 350 160