NDA: Jeff, tell us a bit about yourself—where you grew up and live now…and your family. Besides work (and darts) any hobbies or interests?
JEFF: I was born and raised in Northern Colorado. Lived here for most of my life except for a short stint in Northern California. I have been married to my wife Kym for 27 years this year and we have four children. I enjoy photography, spend time with friends, cooking, and am just getting into podcasting.
NDA: What do you do for work?
JEFF: I am a Chef at a Rehab and Assisted Living Facility. It is not your typical healthcare facility food. We make everything from scratch, to order for our guests.
NDA: How has COVID-19 affected your job?
JEFF: Working in a facility with at-risk guests, every day we have to be super careful what we do and where we go. My wife and I both work in Healthcare so we have really taken the stay at home orders seriously to protect ourselves, our family, and our guests/patients.
NDA: How and when did you start playing darts?
JEFF: I started playing in 1998. Some friends were playing in a league and we used to go watch. I started playing games with them after matches and was hooked. The next season I joined their team.
NDA: How often do you play now?
JEFF: These days I mostly play an Adult/Junior League with my son. After many years of playing two to three nights a week and every tournament I could get into, I realized after the death of my brother that I needed to focus more on time with my family, so my wife and I and three of our kids started playing adult/junior. My son Nolan is going to be good at darts, he has a lot of natural talent. My goal is to help him improve his game, and to teach him how to play darts the right way as far as winning and losing with grace, and being a player that all would want to play with. I also have moved to helping set up and run tournaments like the Colorado and Wyoming State Tournaments. I enjoy the behind the scenes stuff.
NDA: Who is your dart league operator/coordinator and what’s the main value they bring to the table?
JEFF: Judy Mehle from BMW Billiards. She brings so much to the table, but what stands out the most is everything that she does for our dart and pool players. Not only running our leagues but putting on multiple state and regional dart and pool tourneys. I don’t know where she finds all the time for all that she does.
NDA: When you’re not playing, do you get in much practice time? If so, what is your practice regime like? What specific skills do you work on?
JEFF: I don’t practice nearly as much as I should. When I do, I usually throw a couple of games of high score to get warmed up, then a game of Around The World. Then I will work on my cricket numbers. Finally I will use a random number generator on my phone and practice taking out the number it spits out in three darts or less….or more is usually the case.
NDA: What’s the coolest thing you have gotten to experience as a dart player?
JEFF: Vegas. I have so many life long friends from my trips to Vegas, especially my Canadian dart family.
NDA: What do you like most about darts?
JEFF: Getting to spend time friends and family and just kind of escape the real world for a few hours. I also enjoy all the people I get to know through running these tournaments. Sitting at the tournament desk you get to meet so many more people than you do while playing because you get to interact with everyone.
NDA: What advice would (or do) you give to new/novice dart players?
JEFF: Win with class, lose with grace and that the only thing you can control in a match are the three darts in your hand. Not your last three, your partners darts, or the other teams. Stay focused and worry about those three darts only.
NDA: You also have served as a dart referee at NDA and other tourneys. What kind of unique or added perspective does this give you?
JEFF: Being able to work your way through a situation where both sides of a dispute are usually upset and right in their mind.
NDA: What’s the hardest thing about being a referee?
JEFF: Not playing in all the events like I used to. Most tourneys I don’t play a single event, but as I said I really do enjoy the behind the scenes stuff of putting on a tourney. When the players leave at the end of a weekend and come up to the desk and say “Thank You….one of the best run tourneys I have played in”….that makes it all worth it.
NDA: If you could pick one person you’d like to play a game of darts with, who would it be and why?
JEFF: Frank Sinatra – a game or two and a few drinks with Frank, hoping the rest of The Rat Pack would drop by.
NDA: Assuming you have attended Team Dart, how many times have you competed in this event and how does it rate on the circuit of dart events you play in?
JEFF: 15 times, and it is on of my favorite tourneys to play in. Multiple events over multiple days. Good times with friends, and meeting new friends.
NDA: Unfortunately, we had to cancel this year’s Team Dart. Were you going out to Vegas this year? If yes, what are your thoughts on not being able to go to Vegas this month?
JEFF: This was going to be my first time back in 5 years. Although disappointed, I get it. Better safe than sorry, and I will be there next year.
NDA: What have you been doing to get through these challenging times? Besides work, what is your typical day like?
JEFF: Lots of movies and working on a podcasting/blogging website that I am starting.
NDA: What is your favorite…
…Movie: The Godfather
…Music or band: Too many to name…I like A LOT of music in every genre
…TV show: M*A*S*H
…Thing to do in Vegas (besides playing darts!): Try different restaurants, Carnival at Harrah’s with our Canadian Friends, and at least one day where I DO NOT leave the room. A day of rest and relaxation (and giving my liver a break)
Published April 21, 2020