Garth Eliassen

Hall of Fame
Garth Eliassen

Inducted: 2012

Garth Eliassen is an American writer and newsletter editor who founded and edited the National Croquet Calendar, the first independent croquet publication in the USA.  The Calendar was a newsletter that was published from 1985 to 2012 and devoted itself to comprehensive coverage of the American and international croquet scene.

Before the advent of the internet, the Calendar was the publication of record for American croquet which knitted together the far-flung world of American croquet. The Calendar ceased publication in 2012 because Eliassen wished to retire from his one-man show and because the internet had taken over much the immediacy of his coverage.

Garth Eliassen also invented the most revolutionary tactic in American USCA rules, the "Chernoybl opening".  Before the "Chernoybl" appeared, American players brought all balls into the game on the first four turns.  Eliassen realized that by keeping the yellow ball (the fourth ball) out the game would be transformed, and it was. Today the majority of high-level USCA rules games see the "Chernoybl" employed, and the tactic has evolved into numerous permutations.