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Next Performance Sat 01/19/19 10:30am? (Usually Tue, Thu and Sun 5:30pm and Sat 10:30am).



Calder Jai-alai set to open in May


Miami Springs, FL: December 28, 2018: Calder Casino has taken advantage of a loophole in the laws, and is changing its horse racing license to jai-alai, similar to what Magic City did with its dog racing license. While it won’t be the standard 175 foot long court with granite walls in the front, it will be jai-alai similar to what you see at Matt’s court. Except this time you can bet on it. Here are the details that we know of:

Brief History of Calder
In the mid-1960s, real estate developer Steven Calder envisioned summertime horse racing in Florida and got the state to approve it. The track opened May 6, 1971. In 1999, Churchill Downs (yes the Kentucky Derby people) bought it for $86 million. In 2010, a casino was added per the law change in Broward and Dade counties for pari-mutuals to add slot machines. In 2014 they made an agreement with Gulfstream to drop its own horse racing enterprise and host 40 days of Gulfstream racing. This turned out to be a disaster as the casino lost its card room license when the state ruled that Calder needed 80 days of live-action pari-mutual activity on its property of offer poker. Calder then applied for a jai-alai permit, and despite strong opposition from the horse racing world, it got approved and was held up in the courts. The move will save Churchill Downs a ton of money, who would probably be happy just running a racing card in Kentucky that first weekend in May. Calder keep to keep the lucrative slots, poker and simulcasting while running a jai-alai operation. From what we are learning, Calder is not going to open up a little tent and have a couple guys throw the ball around. While there won’t be a $2 million court and a 5,000 seat fronton, it will be the next best thing possible.

The Fronton
A 18,291 square foot building is now going up. Renderings of the outside is shown above here. The complex will cover 2 ½ acres and is adjacent to the existing Calder Casino and Administrative office. The place will be beautiful and will be marketed (what I nice concept) that jai-alai is open. There will be 200 seats in the fronton.

The Court

The court will be 110 feet long with 30+ foot high walls. The court will be made out of concrete and will be comparable to North Miami or Matt’s court as far as the surface of the walls and floor go. We do not know the ball they will be using yet. They are not communicating with Matt in Connecticut either.

Technology

High definition cameras will display the action with slow motion shot replays and more. It will be live to bet on with Watch and Wager. This is great news to hear and wish Dania and Miami would follow suit.

Season Dates

Of course, a delay in construction may change this (it never rains in South Florida, does it?) but Calder Jai-alai is expected to run their season May and June, be closed in July, then open again in August and run through September and October. This is a change from what we had heard before.

The Roster

The roster will have about 30 players. The pay will be good, with decent win, place and show money. While not finalized, there is a chance some of the current Miami Jai-alai players will go there. Steev will be the players manager. That means there are several openings to fill. There are a few NJAA players that fit the mode but many have fulltime jobs like Belota, Scott King, EricL, EricM, George, Seminole King, Magic Mike, Anthony, Thomas, Castanos, Garby, Corky, Armando, Kullster and Rocco. Brodie is opening a business with his wife and may not be available. Two players that went to the Magic City turnout (Kyle aka Baby Castanos got a job) - Rule and Rick B – also filled out paperwork for a tryout with Calder while at Magic City. Ricky, a former pro, who has disappeared like a fart in the wind, would be an ideal player at Calder. Gino is serious about trying out, however. Perhaps the “Sea Cow” may tryout too (then people get to ‘Boooo’ him) !

N Miami has picked up business with all these new opportunities to be a jai-alai player, and they might have several potential players. This is where Kyle has been practicing lately in addition to playing at Puryear Park when he comes home.

Matt has several players that might be interested in the tryout also.

There will be a tryout, but the dates have not been set yet.

The Performances

Many of the games will be singles and a few doubles games will be on the card. The season will run Wednesday through Sunday with Monday and Tuesday off. There will be 3 performances a day for May and June, and two performances a day for August through October. And good news for gamblers, there will be the regular 8 game posts. With 30 or so players, we hope you won’t see what you get like what is going on at Miami Jai-alai now, where some players are pounding out 70 games a week!

Note

Information here in this story is not from Calder Jai-alai and may change.



Kyle Lands Magic City Contract


Kyle played in Matt’s tournament last year -- "Nate the Great was entertaining to some and controversial to others, but his Jai-Alai career may be over"

Miami, Florida: December 3, 2018: About 50 people participated this past weekend for a tryouts at Magic City, and a few NJAA players made the trip. With only 5-6 openings, the odds were not so great on getting one of the lucrative spots on the roster. But at least one of our players did -- and it’s Kyle Kubala -- formally known as "Baby Castanos", the son of Puryear Park Jai-alai founder Paul Kubala - aka "Castanos".

Kyle fit the model perfectly. He’s a great guy, keeps his mouth shut and gives 100% effort all the time. And he’s a pretty decent player now. He’s just 23 years old, graduated college from the area (Florida Atlantic University) as an athlete on the golf team, has never played pro -- exactly the model Magic City was looking for. Kyle had been practicing at North Miami for the past month as he works down there now.

The tryouts were on Friday and Saturday where several players showed up with experience playing jai-alai. Others from the NJAA included Rule and Rick B. Matt’s court had Dave K tryout also. At this time, it is not known if they have been issued a contract. Kyle played extremely well in his tryout. No visitors were allowed, so the NJAA does not have any video or photos of the action.

The tryouts featured several endurance testing methods - players were told it’s a long 5-month season with over 900 games expected -- and they didn’t want players breaking down during the season. The endurance testing included sprinting from the over serve line to the underserve line back to the front wall. You also had to do as many pushups as you could, run up and down the staircases, pass an eye-hand ordination test and for the documentary they were filming, answer questions like -- What do you think of "Nate the Great" and his controversial antics? Then the jai-alai part with 2-3 serves, 2-3 forehand throws were required, 2-3 backhand throws and backhand and forehand rebotes. They were not looking to see how hard you can throw -- just looking for form only.

Rick B played well too from what we understand but he threw a ball too hard that nearly hit the camera crew (oddly on the court) and was "barked" at by Arra! Rule played well from what we understand also.

As mentioned earlier, the contract is a lucrative one -- a year-round salary, great bonus money for wins, places and shows and a great insurance program -- and 7 months off!

About 5-6 players from the current roster will not be returning -- including Nate the Great. With the addition of Kyle and the others TBA, the roster should be much better than this past year.

Not sure when opening day is, but the season usually starts on July 1st but that is a Monday. Let’s all plan on heading down next year for Opening Day and support Baby Castanos -- or we mean Kyle.

What will be his name? We will let you know!


NJAA PLAYERS TRYING OUT AT MAGIC CITY

Miami, Florida: November 26, 2018: As seen earlier here, Magic City Casino is looking for jai-alai players. The ad was posted in the Miami Hurricane student newspaper. As you know, many of the players now on the roster graduated from there and were on the Hurricanes football team and had virtually no jai-alai experience outside playing the N. Miami Amateur for about 3 months just before the season at Magic City started. Closing night is this Friday night, but the tryouts are on this Friday the 30th from 10am to 1pm and Saturday from 10am till 3pm. We have no inside information of what direction they are going, but with the marketing directed to the college newspaper, it appears that is the way they will continue. But who knows?

NJAA players who have said they are going down for the tryout include Kyle Kabala - the son of the man behind getting the Puryear Park court built - Paul Kubala. Many have known Kyle as "Baby Castanos" with his father using the name "Castanos". NJAA player "Rule" - the top rated player in the Meatball League - has also stated he will be down there for a tryout. Julio, who opens Saturday for another year at Miami Jai-alai was going to attend, but won’t. Pros and ex-pros may tryout but are not likely to get offered a contract. JLaca may tryout, but that would mean forfeiting his social security checks! Gino has expressed interest in trying out but way wait for Calder’s tryouts. One of his employees Brian "The Boatman" Harrington will be trying out and has been making progress since putting on a basket less than a month ago, and might actually have a good chance at it as anybody on the outside world with no jai-alai experience.

Lots of jai-alai this weekend:

Magic City

Tryouts Friday 10am-1pm
Matinee performance 3pm
Evening performance 7pm - end of season
Tryouts Saturday 10am-3pm

Dania

Friday 7pm. Partido last game
Saturday matinee 1pm
Saturday evening 7pm
Sunday 1pm

Miami

Saturday - opening day

12 noon
3 pm
6 pm


Repairs coming to Puryear Park Jai-Alai Court


Former Tampa pro "Corky" working out at Puryear Park

St. Petersburg, FL: November 26, 2018: Some much needed repairs are coming to Puryear Park - America’s first public jai-alai court. The NJAA is working with the city to get some much needed court repairs and maintenance. Sometime in January, the following work will be performed:

Court walls repainted
Front wall padding - under the chapa and along the right hand side of the wall.
New LED light installation
Fixture light heads realigned to better illuminate the court
Netting repair all around the court


The most exciting thing will be the LED light installation. This will be an incredible upgrade to the court at night.

There will be some downtime on the court being open to the public and the NJAA website will keep you updated as details become available. Any additional details on court improvements will be announced when we receive the information. Again, the work will commence sometime in January and has been approved by the City.

Again, hats off to the City of St. Pete for working with us!


New Cesta Travel Bag For Sale

Hartford, Connecticut: November 26, 2018: The NJAA has a new jai-alai cesta travel bag for sale. This was made by (soon to be 90-years old) Al Almada, the world’s oldest jai-alai player. The former Jai-alai Heaven co-founder made two of them, with JLaca using the other one. They are designed to carry two front or backcourt baskets and are ideal for those that travel to the court and want to protect their investment. If interested, contact us at the NJAA. We do ship all over the world. Price $200 plus shipping or available for pick up at Puryear Park.



Results from Matt’s Tournament


Berlin, Connecticut: The biggest amateur tournament in decades took place at Matt’s place in Berlin Connecticut
this past weekend with about 45 players participating. The event featured a 15-game Spectacular 9 performance
on Friday night and a long, day-long tournament Saturday featuring the best amateur players from Connecticut,
Rhode Island and Florida. The play was lively with excellent play while packed to the rafters all weekend.
The tournament itself lasted an amazing 8 hours and 15 minutes – even longer than game 3 of the World Series
which lasted 18 innings and 7 hours and 20 minutes! The late ending caused many of the A leaguers to cancel
the annual Saturday night trip to the casinos.

The only Florida player to go home with the gold was Laca, who won the Backcourt Championship in the B Division.
Thomas took second place. Anthony, who suffered with some bad knees, did win the Spec 9 Championship Singles
Game for Division A , and came in 3rd with Scott King for the A Division in the Saturday tournament.

Because of time constraints and a huge turnout, the format for the A tournament Saturday was changed.
There were two brackets with different players. The top three teams in each bracket played a single
15-point straight game. Everybody played 5 games and then there was a championship game. The only
players who played in that game were the four players in the championship Partido.
Fred and Joe P finished first, Mace and Casio finished second, with our Scott King and Anthony coming in 3rd.
In the Partido, Fred and Joe P won 15-11. It was 7:15pm when that marathon ended!




Saturday Tournament

A Division Finals
Fred / Joe P 15
Mace / Casio 11
Front court winner - Fred
Back court winner - Joe P

Scott K / Anthony

B Division Finals
Tony C / Laca 15
Barry / Thomas 8
Front court winner - Tony C
Back court winner - Laca



Spec 9 Results – all games played to 9 points. Points doubled for games 1-13.

Game 1
6 Carlo Thomas
2 Perry Viscig
3 Barry Laca

Game 2
8 Jacques
3 Barry
2 Benny

Game 3
4 Barry Viscig
1 Perry Thomas
3 Garby Chip

Game 4
1 Benny Viscig
8 Brodie Chip
3 Barry Thomas

Game 5
6 Johnny No No
7 Paul R
2 Chip

Game 6
1 Barry Tony C
5 Marcos Bochar
7 Garby Dave K

Game 7
Tony C
Johnny No No
Brodie

Game 8
8 Brodie Joe P
2 Johnny No No Will
6 Tony C John B

Game 9
1 Suitum
8 Johnny No No
3 Paul R

Game 10
8 Suitum Casio
1 Joe P Belota
2 Scott K Jon

Game 11
2 Mace Dave K
5 Ed V Belota
4 Rocco Joe P

Game 12
8 Gino
3 Joe P
1 Belota

Game 13
2 Gino Belota
3 Suitum Dave K
7 Mason Anthony

Game 14
4 Ed V Joe P
2 Rocco Anthony
8 Mason Casio

Game 15
2 Anthony
4 Mason
7 Ed V


Line-Up for Fri 10/26/18 6:30pm Connecticut Tournament 15 Game Spectacular 9


46 Players in for Matt’s Spec 9 Performance Friday Night!

Matt, Mendi, Casio and Ignacio in action at Matt’s Court

Berlin, CT: Matt’s Place will be in full action this weekend with a amazing total of 46 players set to place on Friday night alone in the Spec 9 performance. The NJAA and Florida team is sending a heavy duty lineup of 13 players that includes several of their top players making the 1,300 mile trip. The parking lot will be full as dozens more are expecting to watch the event in person. The action starts at 6:30pm Friday and will be live on Matt’s Facebook page. Saturday’s event will have about 30 players participating.

Friday – 6:30 pm Spec 9 Event

Saturday – 9:30 am Tournament FL vs CT vs RI

Click to Watch


Miami Jai-alai Casino sold with big changes coming



Miami, FL: There was some big news that that will be announced soon that Miami Jai-alai Casino has been sold to the Treasure Island Corporation of Las Vegas with plans to totally remodel the auditorium and add a Cirque Du Soleil like show. What will happen to jai-alai remains to be a question, but here is what we know:

The new company will be taking over ownership by December 1st.

The 52 day schedule will run in December and January. This was set with the DBPR a long time ago and is likely unchangeable

Each player will play 6 days a week, while the fronton will be open 7 days a week. There will be 3 performances a day. All performances have 8 games.

1pm Matinee will have 4 posts game to a Spec 5 format. There will be 4 Singles and 4 Doubles.

3pm Twilight will have 6 post all singles games in a Spec 7 format.

6pm Evening will also have 6 post all singles games in a Spec 7 format.

Players will be playing over 60 games a week, and will judge and announce the games a la Ft. Pierce.

Players may be getting new uniforms with some effort in keeping the operation running.

After the season is completed, the renovations will begin immediately.

Word is a Cirque Du Soleil like show, one like at the Treasure Island in Vegas will be brought in.

We all know it is a disaster in there – thousands of run down chairs, TV’s from the 1980s, broken equipment, disgraceful bathrooms, broken equipment to bet with, no museum, gift shop or food stands in operation. Bringing in a permanent show like Cirque Du Soleil is a game changer. And since jai-alai must be run to keep their slots going, this could be good news. Only time will tell what is going to happen and why this is happening. According to zjaialai56 on Tigers site, monthly slot revenues have been withhold pursuant to claims made under Sections 815.045, 815.04 and 688.002, Florida Statutes. These statutes are all in relation to electronic trade secret law violations that appear criminal in nature.

We have seen the casino part pull out their poker room, its restaurant now a basic take out place with a lousy limited menu and little entertainment. Work was done on the outside several months ago, but the building lacks a parking lot that is not flooded, the flocks of seagulls that takes a crap on you car, the difficulty to navigate in the area with all the construction, and an unsafe looking area.


See a great point between Mike & RickB vs Rule & Carlos on 9/22/18 Game #4.
Begins at 8:00min into video till 10:00min into video.


JAIALAI PARTIDO PONG V1.1
Another Magicmike Program
NOW AVAILABLE (Updated 02/05/12)
Also available on CNet's download.com

Click Here to download from CNET



Web Design by: Michael "Magicmike" Berry
Owned/Operated by NJAA Co-Director Jeff "Laca" Conway

St. Pete Jai-Alai Court
Dedication a huge Success


(click picture to view video)

America’s first public jai-alai court opened in St. Petersburg April 19, 2008 with a big court dedication ceremony and a ‘Merry Festival’ like atmosphere.
Click any link below.

Story and photographs of the event
WSPF-TV broadcast of Court Dedication
FOX-13 live broadcast “Charlie’s World”
(long version)

FOX-13 live broadcast “Charlie’s World”
(short version)

CBS-10 6pm and 11pm newscast reports
St. Pete Times article (printed version)
St. Pete Times article (on-line version)
Official City of St. Pete invitation
NJAA Court Dedication Flyer
NJAA 5-page Press Release
20-page Presentation booklet
“Home video” of court dedication

Video of court ACTION!


(click picture to view video)

After years of hard work and determination, the NJAA is proud of it's first accomplishment - the City of St. Petersburg is the first municipality in the United States to build an amateur jai-alai court for public play! Plan on joining us for our "Merry Festival"





City of St. Pete City Council Meetings and Events

St. Pete City Council Meeting on
December 6th, 2007 on Jai-Alai

St. Pete Jai-alai court


Perfect game! St. Pete City Council on
December 20, 2007
approves additional jai-alai funds by 7-0 vote!

St. Pete Jai-alai court


The Innovation and Persistence Award is given to Paul Kubala of the Edgemoor Neighborhood Association and the NJAA
Innovation and Persistence Award