Crossword Tournament Program
39th Annual American Crossword Puzzle Tournament
April 1-3, 2016
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Registration Info |
Hotel Reservations |
Prizes | About the Puzzles | The Judges | Stamford | Solving at home
|All Events as a Competitor (including Friday)||$215*|
|All Events as a Competitor (beginning Saturday morning)||$165*|
|All Events as a Non-Competitor (including Friday)||$165*|
|All Events as a Non-Competitor (beginning Saturday morning)||$115*|
|Friday Evening Games and Reception Only||$ 65|
|Spectator for Sunday Playoffs (starting at 11AM) Only||$ 20|
The Marriott is sold out of rooms for Saturday night! The Sheraton Stamford Hotel has opened rooms for ACPT at the same rate as the Marriott.
The Marriott will send the shuttle if the weather requires it, but it is a four minute walk if the weather is nice. ACPT participants can call the Sheraton directly at (203) 358-8400 to reserve their rooms.
The Stamford Marriott Hotel & Spa provides special low guest room rates (to come, single or double occupancy), available for contestants Friday and Saturday nights. The rates are to come/night PER ROOM (plus tax) regardless of your choice. This rate is guaranteed through March 21, 2016 (rates afterward subject to room availability). If you need to come early or check out late, please call 800-732-9689 to make arrangements, as this link will only work for Thursday through Sunday.
- Online: Stamford Marriott ACPT Group Rate
- By phone: Phone call in your reservation to the Marriott at 1-800-732-9689 and be sure to ask for the Crossword Tournament group rate
Be prepared with the following information:
- Group name: American Crossword Puzzle Tournament
- Dates: April 1-3, 2016
- Number of people and choice single, double w/1 bed, or double w/2 beds
- Your name, (firm), address, and who you are sharing with. Note: to avoid duplication, submit one reservation for room shared by two or more people
- Arrival date (Friday, April 1, or Saturday, April 2)
- Departure date (Sunday, April 3)
- Credit card info (number and expiration date)
Note that reservations will be held until 6 pm unless guaranteed for late arrival by a check for the first night's room deposit, company guarantee of payment, Club Marquis membership, or by one of the following credit cards: MasterCard • Visa • American Express • Diner's Club • Carte Blanche • Club Marquis
Check-in time is 3pm. Check-out time is noon.
|Friday, April 1|
Warmup games and entertainment. Featuring:
NEW! Escape Room by Eric Berlin
|10:00PM||Wine and cheese reception.|
|11:00PM||Awards for all the evening games.|
|Saturday, April 2|
|All day||Puzzle market — crossword books, word games, and other products of interest to puzzlers|
|11:00AM||Puzzles 1, 2, and 3|
|2:30PM||Puzzles 4, 5, and 6|
|8:00PM||More games and entertainment. Featuring:
Film Tribute to Merl Reagle (1950-2015) by Patrick Creadon and Christine O'Malley — Remembrance of a late friend and crossword legend
And other entertainments
|Sunday, April 3|
|11AM||"Crossworders Got Talent" — a variety show featuring ACPT contestants and officials, with music, dance, comedy, and games. (If you would like to participate, or would like more info, email Will Shortz at firstname.lastname@example.org)|
|Noon||Awards presentation and announcement of the playoff contestants, followed by|
Presentation of the 1st "MEmoRiaL" (that is, Merl Memorial) award for lifetime achievement in crossword construction. The recipient is Maura Jacobson, who it is hoped will be in attendance.
|12:15PM||Championship playoff, in which the top three contestants in Divisions A, B, and C compete in successive sudden-death rounds conducted on giant grids. Live, play-by-play commentary on the A and B finals by Peter Sagal, host of NPR's "Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me!" and Greg Pliska, puzzle writer and the musical director for the Tony Award-winning play "War Horse."|
Scoring is based on accuracy and speed. Score as follows:
- 10 points for every correct word you entered across and down
- A bonus of 25 points for each full minute you finished ahead of the suggested solution time — BUT reduced by 25 points for each missing or incorrect letter (but not beyond the point the bonus returns to zero)
- A bonus of 150 points for each completely correct solution
For the purpose of scoring, a "word" consists of any series of letters written between black squares in the grid, or between a black square and the border of the grid, whether it is a single word, a phrase, or otherwise.
Complete rules will be explained prior to competition.
|Division B||Contestants who have not won a Division A or Division B prize during their last seven tournaments|
|Division C||Contestants who have not finished in the top 20% during their last three tournaments|
|Division D||Contestants who have not finished in the top 40% during their last three tournaments|
|Division E||Contestants who have not finished in the top 65% during their last three tournaments|
|Age Divisions||Solvers 25 years and under (Juniors), 50-59 years (Fifties), 60-69 years (Sixties), 70-79 (Seventies) and 80+ (Seniors)|
|Regional Divisions||Solvers in each of 11 geographical regions:|
Connecticut, Other New England, New York City, Long Island, Westchester/Upstate New York, New Jersey, Other Mid-Atlantic, South, Midwest, West, Foreign [map]
|Rookies||Contestants competing for their first time. Rookies are not eligible for "D" or "E" prizes.|
Thanks to a generous, last-minute donation from PuzzleSocial, home of the popular Daily Celebrity Crossword, the prizes for this year's American Crossword Puzzle Tournament have been doubled!
The ACPT prize pool was close to $7,500. It will now be $15,000. This will be by far the most money ever awarded at a live crossword event anywhere in the world.
Rather than the old prizes being simply doubled, the extra money will be allotted to more winners, as follows:
|Division A||1st Prize||$7,000||was $5,000|
|4th-10th (each)||$100 (each)||was Trophy|
|Division B||1st Prize||$1,000||was $300|
|Division C||1st Prize||$200||was $75|
|Each of Divisions D and E; Juniors, Fifties, Sixties, Seventies, Seniors||1st-3rd Prizes||Trophy||no change|
|11 Regional Winners (each) [map]||1st & 2nd Prizes||Trophy||no change|
|Rookies||1st Prize||$400||was $300|
|4th-10th||$50 (each)||was trophy for 4th & 5th|
Plus Every prizewinner receives a New York Times crossword collection from St. Martin's Press.
About the Puzzles
All crosswords have been specially created and edited for the tournament.
The judges and referees include leading names in crossword puzzling.
Stamford, CT: Directions and Information
243 Tresser Boulevard
Stamford, Connecticut 06901 USA
Note: there is no shuttle service between airports and the hotel.
JFK 42 miles. Driving Directions: Take Van Wyck Expressway to Whitestone Bridge. Follow signs to I-95 North to Connecticut. Take I-95 North to Exit 8. Go up two lights, make a left on Canal Street. Second light make a right on Tresser Blvd. Then make first right into Marriott hotel, go to end and make a right into the Marriott Hotel parking garage. Taxi: Estimated $110 cab fare. Shuttle: Royal Club Limo/Connecticut Express Shuttle; fee: 145 USD (one way); reservation required.
LaGuardia - LGA: 35 miles. Driving Directions: Exit airport, take Grand Central Parkway towards Whitestone Bridge. Follow signs to I-95 North to Connecticut. Take I-95 North to Exit 8. Go up two lights, make a left on Canal Street. Second light, make a right on Tresser Blvd. Then make first right into the Marriott Hotel, go to end and make a right into the Marriott Hotel parking garage. Taxi: Estimated $110 cab fare. Shuttle: Alternate transportation: Royal Club Limo/Connecticut Express Shuttle; fee: 135 USD (one way); reservation required.
Westchester County White Plains Airport - HPN: 13 miles. Driving Directions: Take Route 684 South to 287 East. Follow signs for I-95 North to Connecticut. Take I-95 North to exit 8. Go up two lights and make a left on Canal Street. Second light make a right on Tresser Blvd. Then make a right into the Marriott Hotel, go to the end and make a right into the Marriott Hotel parking garage. Taxi: No estimate available. Shuttle: Alternate transportation: Royal Club Limo/Connecticut Express Shuttle; fee: 70 USD (one way); reservation required.
Public Transportation to the Stamford Marriott
The Stamford Marriott hotel is about 0.6 miles from the Metro North New Haven Line Stamford station. There are several economical ways to get to the Marriott from LaGuardia, JFK and Newark airports via public transportation. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (“MTA”) has a booklet that tells how to connect to the railroad:
Solving At Home
Now you can take part in the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament — and find out how you'd score — from your own home!
- On Your Computer: Solve the puzzles online on the weekend of the tournament, or at anytime throughout the year. Standings of online competitors are constantly updated. Click here for details.
- By Mail: Receive this year's puzzles (upon completion of the tournament) by mail, solve them and return your solutions to us with your times. We'll judge your puzzles, send you your scores, and tell you your ranking in every event in which you were eligible. To Register, click here.
If you need help, call Michael Smith at 215-266-2802 (email@example.com).
For questions regarding the hotel, call the Stamford Marriott at (203) 357-9555.