FEEDBACK WANTED: 2014 US Open

Eric.

Club a member
Silver Member
This, from the main page, from Barry Behrman:

" First of all I wish everyone a happy and healthy New Year.

My question to all of you is what to do for this year’s event? The past several months of my life have been more difficult than maybe ever & I’m asking the pool world for your input.

My beautiful daughter, Shannon, left in November to pursue the real estate business and I know she will be great at it as she has been with anything she has ever accomplished & she has my full blessings. Then in December, we all lost our beloved House-Pro, Dave Bollman, to cancer. We all miss Dave very much. We were together for 40-years.

When I was 15-years old and began to wrestle, I read a sign in our practice room which read, “Winners never quit & quitters never win.” I have lived my life with those 7 words, but now with so much to do at Q-Master Billiards, finding ample time for our 39th Annual is difficult. I’m not saying no to this year, but what I am asking for is your valued opinions, which will help me decide on what to do this October.

We all want to be in one large ballroom as we were from 1997 – 2011 at the Chesapeake Conference Center, rent free. Now they want $35,000 for the rental which makes it impossible to go back.

The Marriot has saved October 12th – 18th for this year and I have to decide very soon. So, again, I am looking for constructive criticism from those of you who truly know and have been here.

Many good posts have been greatly appreciated but at the same time some people who really don’t know write things that hurt very much such as saying my son’s daughters are awful singing our national anthem one night. Anyone can say whatever they wish, but who can say they have stayed through the good, the bad and the ugly for almost 40-years. Yes, I surely have made my mistakes along the way. However, my passion for the game is undeniably true. The U.S. Open is not a money maker. Each year, I hope to break even or even, God forbid, make a few dollars.

So many kind people, sponsors, vendors and many more depend on me, each and every year to come through when there are fewer events worldwide and especially in America, which is just a shame.

No, I don’t want to quit, take a year off and regroup into a larger ballroom. I want to continue on as always. Having the support from my sponsors, our players, our vendors and the greatest fans in the world is what I need to have the strength to carry on again this year.

I will gladly place the $50,000 added money along with player’s entry fees into my SunTrust U.S. Open account which will be set-up for all to be able to click on anytime 60-days prior to October 12th – 18th, 2014.

I realize I have much to prove and as last year, all players will be paid on time at the event.

Last year’s open at the Marriot was much better than the year prior and by tweaking the main ballroom for better viewing it will be much better for our VIP’s and general admissions ticket buyers.

So, again, I’m asking for your input which will help determine what to do for this year’s 39th Annual U.S. Open."
 
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poolguy4u

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I would like to see Barry get some help from someone like Dawn or Allen Hopkins.

A partner he can depend on. Someone that can take the bull by the horns....




I'd like to see the US Open continue forever....
 

cleary

Honestly, I'm a liar.
Silver Member
Barry, people are going to have opinions of things and not everyone is going to like the things you do. I for one think a lot of the singing, announcements and flag waving is corny... but I can have an opinion and you can do what you wanna do.


Do what you want to do or what will make you happy. I'd hate to see the tournament dry up, but you have to do what works for you.


I would suggest adding less money and holding it at qmasters.
 

prad

Flip the coin
Silver Member
Barry, people are going to have opinions of things and not everyone is going to like the things you do. I for one think a lot of the singing, announcements and flag waving is corny... but I can have an opinion and you can do what you wanna do.


Do what you want to do or what will make you happy. I'd hate to see the tournament dry up, but you have to do what works for you.


I would suggest adding less money and holding it at qmasters.

This is my suggestion too. IMO the title of US Open 9-ball champion is worth more than the first prize money.
 

cleary

Honestly, I'm a liar.
Silver Member
This is my suggestion too. IMO the title of US Open 9-ball champion is worth more than the first prize money.

Well, I think the added money is what's got him in trouble in the past. It's too hard to cover that nut. He SHOULD make money. Not a killing, but he should profit. And $50k is just too hard to cover. He can still get people in the door to watch. maybe add more bleachers in another room. And with the food/booze he can bring in much more, I think.

I think it's time to realize that making pool look overly professional (or trying) gets you nowhere but stuck.
 

MahnaMahna

Beefcake. BEEFCAKE!!
Silver Member
I am sure that the ABP will support your efforts as they are always acting with the players' best interests, especially with the excellent business partnership you have both built.
 

Johnnyt

Burn all jump cues
Silver Member
Big tournaments don't work for the promoter or most of the players. Barry has proven the model is no good. When was the last year you made money Barry? Travel, $500 entry, and a weeks worth of expenses don't work today. If money could be made with your format, others would be putting on large tournaments like in the earlier years. Johnnyt
 

ARJ

New member
Barry, I've been attending the US Open in conjunction with the CCB for the last 13 or 14 years and just wanted to drop my 2 cents in. Last year we made the unfortunate mistake of getting our pit VIP seat on the top row and sadly that was an obstructed view of the guys head in front of me meaning that we had to stand, hunched over to see 75% of the table. We ended up just buying the live stream and watching it in the tournament room, kinda silly.

The stuff before the big matches, the National Anthem and such, I've heard worse before bigtime events, thanks Carl Lewis and Rosanne Barr, so you keep doing what makes you happy. Seriously, those kids are adorable and you obviously are proud of them so that's cool. Obviously the Convention Center is the place to have the event but finance is finance and you have to do what you have to do. Maybe the tournament is better off with 126 players or less? Maybe it needs to be a bigger buy in to reduce the back half of the field? If you want to do it at the Marriot that's fine but you need to lower the seats regardless of what the players feel. The last 2 years I felt that nobody bothered to sit in the seats to view the championship table and thus were obstructed. As a paying customer the obstructed view really irked me but I didn't say anything because I figured the Marriot venue would be better than the Holiday Inn. Yes, the players are the stars of the event but we the fans pay good money to travel and watch and we still should be given what we pay for. Maybe there should be 10% surcharge per viewing ticket sold to help defray costs towards renting a proper space?

Whatever the solution the burden shouldn't fall completely on your shoulders Barry. Someone else mentioned that you should be able to turn a profit on your event, I couldn't agree more. We all know you try hard and we all know you care, sometimes even to a fault and even though you don't know me personally I know you've worked hard over the years to give me a week that I look forward to.

Good luck Barry, I really hope you work everything out. This coming Open we wanted to come together again to memorialize our great friend Rich Rhoads and it would be sad for all of us if we couldn't do it at one of his favorite tournaments.

Sincerely,

R.J. Benoit
 

JAM

Professional Railbird
Silver Member
Reduce the field to 128. That way, those who want to play in it will get their entry fees to you early. You can have a waiting list, in fact.

The large field from the past is too much for anyone in a fractured pool world. Impossible to turn a profit. Too many expenses, personnel needed, et cetera.

Mike Zuglan and Allen Hopkins always have waiting lists for their pro events. Their fields are 64 players. I think Barry can do this with 128 very easily. Lower the purse.

Build it this way, Barry, and the will still come. :wink:
 

juegabillar

Private Citizen
Silver Member
This, from the main page, from Barry Behrman:

So, again, I’m asking for your input which will help determine what to do for this year’s 39th Annual U.S. Open."

Barry, why not try to search for an open space building in Virginia Beach, Cheasapeake or nearby in which you can simulate the boxing arena layout of the Open when it was held at the Convention Center. Reduce the number of players to 128 as others have already stated, reduce the payouts to one fouth of the field (32 players) and reduce the number of tables to maybe 10, and maybe cut a day or two of match play. (Monday thru Friday)

Two of those tables would be the TV tables, with 4 tables to each side. Obviously there would be the need to carpet the playing area. You would then only need to construct or lease the bleachers such as you have been doing in the past.

Leave the VIP prices for the seats the same but maybe rise the general admission price to $12 or $15 dollars. I've been going on and off to the Open since 1999 but for the last 3 years I"ve been a permanent fixture; and I sure would love for you to continue giving the players and fans an event and venue to look forward to every year.

I wish you the best of luck for this year's Open.

Harold Acosta - Past President
Puerto Rican Billiard Federation
 

RobertaAgnor

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
Where did you see this on the main page, I don't see it anywhere?

Here's the link in case you haven't found it yet :) http://www.azbilliards.com/news/stories/11061-2014-u-s-open-9-ball-championships/

I know Barry already knows my thoughts on this but I would love nothing more than to see it back at the Convention Center but I fully understand why that's not an option the way the city is being towards him after so many years & all the money he brought in to them. I love Harold's idea but it's kind of tough finding somewhere similar that is also affordable.Q-Masters just doesn't have the seating for it to be there in my opinion unless it is a much smaller field.

It doesn't really matter much to me where it is as I will be there anyway. :)
 

real bartram

Real Cold Steel
Silver Member
This, from the main page, from Barry Behrman:

" First of all I wish everyone a happy and healthy New Year.

My question to all of you is what to do for this year’s event? The past several months of my life have been more difficult than maybe ever & I’m asking the pool world for your input.

My beautiful daughter, Shannon, left in November to pursue the real estate business and I know she will be great at it as she has been with anything she has ever accomplished & she has my full blessings. Then in December, we all lost our beloved House-Pro, Dave Bollman, to cancer. We all miss Dave very much. We were together for 40-years.

When I was 15-years old and began to wrestle, I read a sign in our practice room which read, “Winners never quit & quitters never win.” I have lived my life with those 7 words, but now with so much to do at Q-Master Billiards, finding ample time for our 39th Annual is difficult. I’m not saying no to this year, but what I am asking for is your valued opinions, which will help me decide on what to do this October.

We all want to be in one large ballroom as we were from 1997 – 2011 at the Chesapeake Conference Center, rent free. Now they want $35,000 for the rental which makes it impossible to go back.

The Marriot has saved October 12th – 18th for this year and I have to decide very soon. So, again, I am looking for constructive criticism from those of you who truly know and have been here.

Many good posts have been greatly appreciated but at the same time some people who really don’t know write things that hurt very much such as saying my son’s daughters are awful singing our national anthem one night. Anyone can say whatever they wish, but who can say they have stayed through the good, the bad and the ugly for almost 40-years. Yes, I surely have made my mistakes along the way. However, my passion for the game is undeniably true. The U.S. Open is not a money maker. Each year, I hope to break even or even, God forbid, make a few dollars.

So many kind people, sponsors, vendors and many more depend on me, each and every year to come through when there are fewer events worldwide and especially in America, which is just a shame.

No, I don’t want to quit, take a year off and regroup into a larger ballroom. I want to continue on as always. Having the support from my sponsors, our players, our vendors and the greatest fans in the world is what I need to have the strength to carry on again this year.

I will gladly place the $50,000 added money along with player’s entry fees into my SunTrust U.S. Open account which will be set-up for all to be able to click on anytime 60-days prior to October 12th – 18th, 2014.

I realize I have much to prove and as last year, all players will be paid on time at the event.

Last year’s open at the Marriot was much better than the year prior and by tweaking the main ballroom for better viewing it will be much better for our VIP’s and general admissions ticket buyers.

So, again, I’m asking for your input which will help determine what to do for this year’s 39th Annual U.S. Open."

I didn't like playing in the room in the back .
My stick hit the wall Just felt like I was in a small tourney .
 

RobertaAgnor

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
I didn't like playing in the room in the back .
My stick hit the wall Just felt like I was in a small tourney .

That back room was pretty bad, I don't know how y'all managed; I was only back there watching Tommy Kennedy's match. I did enjoy your match against Raj though.:)
 

purpdrag

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I've been there for the first few days the last two years. I'd really hate to see this tournament fold and even taking one year off would really hurt the continuity and respect level for the event.

I like the ideas that cut your expenses like reducing the added money. Reducing the field to 128 would also make a more manageable and predictable tournament since you could use less tables and space and would almost certainly fill the 128 slots, especially if you do have an escrow to guarantee payouts.

You know Q Masters better than anyone else is probably why you haven't tried to do it there. Too hard to provide the seating for more than around 100 fans I think.

I think reduce the field to 128, reduce added money to 40k, keep entry fee at $500, and increase entry fee to $15/session starting on Friday evening. Hopefully get some good deals for sponsorship and TV rights. You could still pay deep into the field and pay almost as much as last year for the top prizes. A little lower payouts and a well run tourney is much better than no U.S. Open at all.

Your going to need to get some good helpers, appreciate their service, treat them with respect, and pay them promptly at the conclusion of the clean up. I don't know details, but it's not good when Jay Helfert is walking away with bad feelings.

Also, I plan to be there again to contribute my small amount to Q Masters and the U.S. Open.
 

Lucky_Lew66

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Never been to the US open,but what about renting a big gym for the week,probably plenty of room that way,i dont know if you could make it as classy or comfortable,just a thought.
 

loyarc

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
And why can't q-masters be the venue?

First, thank you Barry for the creating and maintaining the most prestigious tournament to win and even play in. That is a remarkable achievement.

As for what's done specifically at the us open, do what makes you happy.

Professional venues are outrageous. With that said, why can't q-masters be the venue? I know, I know: not big enough. But is that being open-minded and considerate of all possibilities?

Why not consider adapting your room around the event. As I see it, doesn't the pool room eventually subsidize the event anyway, in some financial form?

Worried about lost room revenue during the open? Space? Then adapt the tournament itself through scheduling, the field size and the exhibition. This may require some upfront investment or even Qmasters moving altogether. But based on the brand you've built (which is independent of the venue IMO), and considering the exhibition expenses, couldn't you reasonably predict ROI to make the investment worth it?

Maybe I'm crazy, but I think the Open should get smaller to get better. Return to its roots and create something truly sustainable in the process.
 

loyarc

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
And why can't q-masters be the venue?

Duplicate post
 
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nb92

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Reduce the field to 128. That way, those who want to play in it will get their entry fees to you early. You can have a waiting list, in fact.

The large field from the past is too much for anyone in a fractured pool world. Impossible to turn a profit. Too many expenses, personnel needed, et cetera.

Mike Zuglan and Allen Hopkins always have waiting lists for their pro events. Their fields are 64 players. I think Barry can do this with 128 very easily. Lower the purse.

Build it this way, Barry, and the will still come. :wink:

Agree --- go to $25K added (OR LESS)... look at what the added money trend IS... when things pick up... you can pick it up to..... go to 128 and have it in ONE ROOM... that is very doable at last years location ... IMO Seating was fine.. the VIP seating was much improved! .... Let me know when I can book my room and get my VIP tickets! :thumbup:
 

nb92

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
.. Oh.. I will add this and I do NOT mean to cause a "sh*t storm" and I am not familiar with your revenue stream... meaning if you pay for the streaming / recording up front and THEN participate in any future profits and have actually REALIZED those profits in the past then cool ... keep it!

... BUT if the live streaming / or dvd production is a net Expense to YOU... then dump it.....

It is great having everyone there taping and doing the commentary but if it is a cost then it could be cut... if it makes a difference in having and not having the event....

one of the reasons I have gone almost every year since late 80s' is if you want to see it back then... you needed to be there! (LOL)...
 
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