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COVER STORY : Bunco Night Tips

June 11, 1993|BARBARA BRONSON GRAY

Bunco regulars say starting a group is simple: All you need are any multiple of four people--although most groups run with 12--and a few basic supplies. What's tough to come by are guidelines on how to structure the groups, since it is a newly popular game. Suggestions from bunco players who play once or twice a month:

* Try to start with a total of 12 people who can regularly meet on a given night at a particular time. Ask that everyone who participates be willing to host the group one night a year.

* Decide on a substitute policy. Will the absentee or person hosting the game be responsible for filling someone's place?

* The official game--"Bunco Deluxe," by Tailicor Inc.--is available at local game and toy stores for $13. It comes with rules, nine dice, score cards, a scratch pad and a bell to herald the end of a round. Some groups gather the materials and improvise the score cards on their own.

* Decide what awards, if any, the group wants to give at the end of the evening. Many groups give small gifts for the high score, the low score and the last bunco, or compete for a small pool of money.

* Most groups encourage everyone to bring potluck hors d'oeuvres. Some tie the game to the calendar, turning the October session into a costume party, for example, or the December game into a dressier occasion. Some skip July and August if participants are vacationing.

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