Tony Rich, Director of the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis, talks about the weekend's events with Grand Master Jennifer Shahade over a quick but brutal game of chess. Shahade played a simul at the St. Louis Science Center, and Chess Club members pitched in to paint a St. Louis Metro Bus (thanks to Metro Arts in Transit) encouraging everyone to visit the Club May 7-17 for the 2009 US Chess Championship.
The Chess Club and Scholastic Center was packed for their first free blitz tournament and movie night featuring the classic "Searching for Bobby Fischer". Free chips and soda were available for all club members.
"I love "Searching for Bobby Fischer", commented an enthusiastic young club member. The movie chronicles 7-year old chess prodigy Josh Waitzkin's quest to become a national scholastics championship. It's not all fun and games as Josh deals with pressure from parents and coaches, the pros and cons of sandbagging and learning what it takes to be a true champion in all phases of life. "Searching for Bobby Fischer" is a must-see for all chess players, especially if you've played scholastic chess or have a child interested in chess.
On April 25th and 26th, the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis played host to the 2009 Saint Louis Open. For the past few years, this prestigious event has been forced to use the rather unassuming conference room at a no frills hotel because of cost constraints. This year saw this high class event finally get the proper venue it deserves, and Missouri chess players showed their support for the change. While some common names were missing from the list of registrants, the event also managed to bring in some unfamiliar names that were hopefully dazzled by the venue and will continue to support the chess endeavors of the CCSCSL and its tournament aspirations. Overall, the event brought in 51 paid entries and the event was extremely well run by the very competent TD staff of Ed Baur and MCA president Thomas Rehmeier.
As May 7th inches closer and closer, an aura of anticipation and excitement has been steadily building around the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis. Beginners and Masters alike are teeming with enthusiasm, and many of them for different reasons. Whether it is the chance to watch live analysis by top class GMs , observe some of the most competitive chess games ever played in Saint Louis, or the opportunity to meet some of the brightest chess minds in the United States, the 2009 U.S.
The Chess Club and Scholastic Center is always working to promote scholastic chess as an educational tool. In an effort to greater understand curricular chess, it is good to look to current examples as to what chess can be in an educational setting. This month, we'll take a quick look at Chess in the Schools, the New York City based organization that brings chess to thousands of students each year.
CCSCSL is proud to present the U.S. Chess Championships tournament in May 2009.
The invitations have been sent and the RSVP's received. The player listing (by rank) is as follows:
Some of the nation’s best and best-known players are competing in the field of 24 competing for more than $200,000 in prize money. Included on that list will be St. Louisan Charles Lawton, the only African-American contestant but also a man who relishes the opportunity to compete on a grand stage.
St. Louisan Charles Lawton is up to the challenge of facing the best players in U.S. Chess Championship
ST. LOUIS, April 17, 2009 -- When the 2009 U.S. Chess Championship is held in St. Louis in May, some of the nation’s best and best-known players will be in the field of 24 competing for more than $200,000 in prize money. Included on that list will be St. Louisan Charles Lawton, the only African-American contestant but also a man who relishes the opportunity to compete on a grand stage.
The tournament will take place May 7 through 17 at the new Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis, a not-for-profit, 501(c)3 organization that opened in July 2008. Founded by retired investment fund manager Rex Sinquefield, it already has more than 500 members, surpassing its original goal of 300 for its first year of operation by 67 percent. Steve Goldberg of United States Chess Federation (USCF) Online has called the club “certainly one of the most impressive chess centers” in the country. For more information, visit www.saintlouischessclub.org or call 314-361-CHESS.
Richard Benjamin(2200) swept the competition 5-0 achieving the title of Club Champion. The Club Championship was a 6 player Round Robin comprised of the winners of each monthly "Knights" tournaments. Richard Benjamin faced off against the #2 seed Jim Voelker in the first round which turned out to be a pivotal game. The Master outlasted Voelker in a difficult endgame to give him his only loss of the tourney.