Our Pool Night


It was just 15 short years ago... John got a beautiful 9 foot Brunswick tournament table. Ann was pregnant with Maggie and our group began playing Kelly Pool. You see... we liked to play pool and with a baby on the way, John and Ann were not going to be able to come to our houses as easily, besides... it's a really nice table. So it began, Tuesday nights at first and then Saturday's got added after the baby arrived.

Kelly Pool was a game I had played with my Dad and family and friends for years. It was always fun and a way for anyone of any ability to participate with the same possibility of winning as an experienced pool player. Very often the beginners would win. It's much more of a social game than any other pocket billiards game. If you've ever watched pool on television, the only social interaction is amongst the commentators. With Kelly Pool, although people are paying attention to the game, we socialize quite a bit. Discussions of how to play a shot happen a lot, but we've learned... 'Don’t listen to the guy who follows you'.

We have also noticed that by playing Kelly Pool, our shot making has dramatically improved. Playing Kelly almost forces you to look at the table differently. There are many angles that a player would not ordinarily look at. Playing with 15 balls in rotation creates a lot of obstacles to hitting your object ball.

Since we’ve developed and been using the scoreboard, we realize the great utility of it. Not only is it perfect for scoring and keeping track of our Kelly games, but it has proven to be useful for all different pool games. Whether it is keeping track of the breaker for the next game, or to compile stats, the scoreboard has become a fun part of our pool nights. Maybe I should say the scoreboard is… Great!

Kelly moves along best with 5-7 players, however we have had up to 12...then it gets much more social, ' Bob...it's your turn!'. We happen to play for $1.00 per game and over the years have realized that 'what goes around, comes around', but you do feel good when you make a shot for a double or triple pot.

We have adapted a few house rules for our games. On the break, if an opposing player’s number goes in he or she can re-ante and draw another secret number. Also if the breaker sinks his number on the break… each player gives the breaker an additional dollar.
I've always played the game as a way of improving my pool skills, so I usually play each ball in rotation unless I have a clear combination to sink my pill (we call the peas, pills). Cliff on the other hand, is always looking for a way to somehow make his pill... he takes a little longer to shoot.

When in the pool room, playing with three players, we play ‘cut throat’. If four players are there, we play team ‘eight ball’ and over four, we play ‘Kelly’. Our skills have definitely improved greatly over the years, and so has our love for the game. Hopefully we can re-introduce Kelly Pool to the world and everyone can have more fun. Oh, by the way... my Dad still plays with us, he's 83. Maggie’s in high school.


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