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Updated: 02/08/2018 08:30:02AM

Sebring Garden Club holds mah jongg tournament

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Lucky Draw winners, from left; Rose Loeschen, Liis Vermillion, Sherry Scharbert.


Tournament Director Dottee Cohen tabulated the scores.


1st Division leaders, from left; Rita Sundin (3rd), Karen Bucklew (1st) and Sandy Haka (2nd).


From left; Janet Moore, Buttonwood Bay; Cathy Girgen, Leisure Acres, Lake Placid; Lou Howard, Golf Hammock; Esther Goodner, Tanglewood.


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On Friday, Jan. 26, a group of 64 women gathered at the Jack Shoup Center in downtown Sebring to compete in the fifth annual mah jongg tournament to raise funds for the Sebring Garden Club. The event was coordinated by Dottee Cohen.

Gloria Frances, immediate past president of the Sebring Garden Club, was pleased to see so many players out for a great day of mah jongg. This is one of two fundraisers organized by the Garden Club annually to fund scholarships for Sebring High School seniors taking horticulture or agriculture courses and planning to head to college. Students must apply for the scholarship and the Garden Club is currently looking for deserving recipients.

The other event held each year is a card party. This year it will be held at the Jack Stroup Center on Thursday, March 8. Participants are invited to come and join in any board games. The organizers expect to attract 30 tables or 120 players. The entry fee is just $10. Tickets can be purchased by calling Gloria Frances at 863-471-0657 and leaving a message.

There were many winners at the tournament tournament. Lucky draw winners were Sebring residents Barb Yoder and Rose Loeschen of Buttonwood Bay plus Sherry Scharbert of Highlands Ridge in Avon Park. Liis Vermillion from Sunshine RV in Lake Placid also took home a prize.

Once the scores had been tallied, winners of the Second Division, comprised of beginning mah jongg players, were announced. Placing first with 125 points was Sherry Scharbart of Avon Park followed in second place by Lake Placid’s Linda Fett with 90 points. Third place went to Marsha Rock, also from Lake Placid, who had 80 points.

In the First Division, where the more experienced players competed, Karen Bucklew of Golf Hammock came out on top with 260 points. She was trailed by two Tanglewood residents, Sandy Haka whose 205 points narrowly beat out Rita Sundin who took third place honors with 200 points.

Players were reminded that the Heartland Games for Active Adults mah jongg tournament, coordinated by the second-place finisher, Sandy Haka, will be held at Tanglewood in Sebring on Feb. 16. Complete details and registration forms are available at the South Florida State College website The registration deadline is fast approaching.