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Mah Jongg Tournament

Sunday March 24, 2024

The JCC invites you to join us for our first annual Mah Jongg Tournament on Sunday, March 24, 2024.  The registration/check-in will begin at 12:00pm and play will begin promptly at 1pm.  Play will go till 5pm.  Prizes will be awarded at the end of the tournament.  Please bring a 2023 National Mah Jongg League card with you. The Official Standard Hands & Rules of the National Mah Jongg League Inc., for the current year, will be the format for the tournament. 

Registration/Check-in: 12:00PM

Tournament Play: 1:00PM – 5:30PM (4 rounds)

Seasoned Players Suggested and Open to All Members & Non-Members

Light Snacks and Beverages will be provided.

Price increase after March 1, 2024, to $60

Registration will close March 15, 2024

  • Have patience for others; please do not criticize or judge your opponent’s play.
  • RESPECT: be gracious and courteous to your fellow payers.  This tournament enforces ZERO TOLERANCE for inconsiderate, rude or abusive behavior.
  • “East”Player will start the game by rolling the dice to break the wall.
  • The first Charleston is compulsory; second Charleston may be stopped before the 2nd left pass.
  • You may only have a blind pass or steal on the last pass of each Charleston i.e. the first left and the last right.  If you steal a tile, you may NOT look at it.  (Minus 10 points if you look).
  • NO PICKING AHEAD (underline this) – The next tile in play should not be touched until the previous player has discarded.  Do not place your hand on the next tile or hover over the wall until the player before you has discarded.
  • A tile should be racked as soon as it is drawn.  “Pick & Click” is the best practice.  Once a tile is racked, the previous tile cannot be called by another player. (A tile may be called up until the next tile is racked). A tile should be racked first… then discarded.
  • Picking and racking too quickly is considered unkind. As a courtesy to others, allow a slight pause before picking your tile so that other players have seen and considered the discarded tile.  However, do not delay the game.
  • You must initiative your turn by picking up a tile (underline before) before any jokers can be exchanged or you will be declared dead.
  • If a player calls a tile and has not put it in their rack, they may decide not to take it.  This is true even if they have touched or picked up the tile. Calling is not a commitment until the tile is racked.
  • Best practice is to place a called tile UP ON your rack.  However, there is no penalty for placing it IN your rack first.
  • If you name a tile for discard, but HAVE NOT placed it on the table, you may change your mind.
  • When declaring Mah Jongg, display the hand “as it appears” on the Mah Jongg card.
  • Time will be called after 55 minutes.  Each table will have 5 minutes to finish that game, or everyone play at the table is declared dead and will receive “0”for that game.

Movement after each round:
N moves up 1 table
S moves down 1 table
E moves up 2 tables
W move down 2 tables

  • Winner of each hand scores exact values on the card.
  • Add 10 points when player picks their own Mah Jongg tile. 
  • Add 20 points when player has no jokers.  Exception: there is no bonus for Singles and Pairs hands.
  • Minus 10 points to player who throws winning tile to player who has one or no exposures on rack. 
  • Minus 20 points to player who throws winning tile to player who has two or more exposures on rack.
  • Add 10 points to each player for a wall game. Exception: “dead hand” or Mahj in error receives 0 points.
  • Minus 10 points to a player who looks at a stole tile during a blind pass.
  • If a player is declared “dead,” then they receive 0 points in the event of a wall game or if someone else declares mah jongg. Any Jokers that were exposed PRIOR to the hand being called “dead” may be redeemed during the remaining players’ turn.  If you declare a hand “dead” in error, your hand is “dead.”
  • If Mah Jongg is declared in error and all players have exposed their hands, the person in error scores 0 points and all others score 10 points.  If only one player does not expose hand, that player scores 10 points and all others score 0 points.  If two or three hands are intact, play continues.  Players should NOT throw in hand or expose hand until Mah Jongg is verified.  
  • If a concealed hand is incorrectly exposed for Mah Jongg, tiles must be returned to rack.  Joker(s) cannot be redeemed, and player is “dead.”
  • If a mis-named tile is called for Mah Jongg, then the discarder receives Minus 20 points and the Mahjongg receives the points on the card.  A mis-named discarded tile cannot be called for an exposure.  If you start to expose tiles based on what you hear, and not see your hand will be called dead.
  • Time will be called after 55 minutes.  Each table will have 5 minutes to finish that game, or everyone playing at the table is declared dead and will receive 0 points for that game.
  • Each player will verify scores after each game and initial score card at the end of each round.

Q: Is the Mahj Tournament Open to Members and Non-Members

A: Yes, members and non-members can register to play in the tournament.

Q: How does the Tournament work?

A: When you arrive and check-in, you will draw a table number and a direction (NEWS). You will start at the table you drew, and then rotate based on your table movement direction.

Movement after each round:
N moves up 1 table
S moves down 1 table
E moves up 2 tables
W move down 2 tables

Q: What rules are you playing with?

A: Our Mahj Tournament will be based off the National Mah Jongg League Tournament structure.

Q: Is the tournament open to beginners?

A: No, the tournament is suggested for seasoned players.  We suggest that you practice playing in under 13 minutes, if you feel that you are comfortable playing at that pace, you may be ready for a tournament.

Q: How should I prepare for the tournament?

A: To practice playing for the tournament, you should be sure that you can play each game in under 13 minutes, that is the best rule of thumb to start at.

Q: How long is the tournament?

A: The tournament has 4 rounds; each round is an hour long.  You will need to complete 4 games in 1 hour.  We will give a 5-minute warning at 55 minutes.

Q: How many winners will there be?

A: We will have 10 winners total who will receive cash prizes.

Q: What kind of Mahj sets will be used?

A: We will use traditional style Mahj sets with standard size tiles.

Q: What card will be used?

A: We will use the 2023 Mah Jongg League Card.

Q: What kind of Mahj sets will be used?

A: We will use