You are here


Scholastic Chess at Blossom Wood Day School

[imagefield_assist|fid=8943|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]On Friday, January 7, Scholastics Coordinator Alex Vergilesov made his first visit to Blossom Wood Day School in Hazelwood. This was the first time in the history of the school that chess lessons were offered as an option for after-school programming. Vergilesov and club employee Mike Kummer drove out to the event where they met up with a recently hired part-time instructor, Sam Hatfield. When they arrived 32 students were eagerly awaiting their first-ever chess lesson!

Kummer instructed a group of 16 K-4 students separately, while Vergilesov trained Hatfield on how to lead and implement a lesson. Sixteen more enthusiastic students in grades 4-7 made their first steps in understanding chess. The instructors began with a pawn exercise, challenging the students to play out “pawn wars” where the victory condition was promotion; the first player to promote a pawn wins.

View More

Chess Comes to Sundance


In exciting news for chess in the mainstream, this year's Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah will premiere Bobby Fischer Against the World, a documentary directed by Liz Garbus about the late American World Champion. The World Chess Hall of Fame and Museum, set to open across the street from the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis on September 8th, 2011, will host a series of promotional events at the festival, including GM challenges and a photography exhibition by Harry Benson. See more details on the flyer below. I will be attending and so will CLO contributor GM Joel Benjamin so look for exclusive coverage right here! 

WIM Iryna Zenyuk talks to the US Chess Scoop about her excitement for the upcoming event.

View More

Club Ladder is Underway

[imagefield_assist|fid=8914|preset=frontpage_200x200|title=|desc=|link=none|origsize=|align=left|width=200|height=200]The Chess Club Ladder got off to a great start with 52 CCSCSL Members signed up and 16 USCF rated games played in the first two weeks. Alexsey Kazakevich is on top of the leaderboard for total points with 2.5. If he can maintain his top position until the end of the month, he will be rewarded with $100. Alexsey is also in line to win another $100 as the member that plays the most games during a month. He has played three. CCSCSL Instructor Bill Thompson has been playing some good chess lately as well. He even managed to defeat CCSCSL Executive Director Tony Rich. An upset of 275 points. The player that delivers the biggest upset for the month receives $50.

To see the crosstable of the first two weeks of action, click here

To see the rules and the official, up to date club ladder click here.

View More

A Year In Review

[imagefield_assist|fid=8912|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]I have worked at the CCSCSL for one full year, and what a year!

I was quite successful in the quick and blitz tournaments held at the Chess Club, winning each game throughout the year. Slow tournaments were a different story altogether.

There were three types of tournaments held at the Chess Club in 2010. The usual weekend events, the unusually strong weekend events (Saint Louis Open and Thanksgiving Open), and the U.S. Championship.

View More

The Odak Open is Complete!

Between entry fees for the Simul, entry fees for the tournament, and donations from players, over $2200 for the fight against ALS was raised by the Saint Louis Chess community.  Thanks to all who participated!

[imagefield_assist|fid=8888|preset=fullsize|lightbox=true|title=Draw FTW|desc=Marler sealed the deal with a draw by agreement.|link=none|align=left|width=700|height=467]

View More

CCSCSL Expert Factory Recap

[imagefield_assist|fid=8798|preset=frontpage_200x200|title=|desc=|link=none|origsize=|align=left|width=200|height=200]By Tony Rich

When I first heard of the Expert Factory, it sounded like a great opportunity to play against opponents who were around my strength and have a grandmaster analyze my games. When I woke up Sunday morning, it felt more like an opportunity to lose three games against my peers and be chastised for my bad play. Luckily neither were true, and the experience made this one of my favorite tournaments ever.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Expert Factory, it is a tournament in which up to 10 Class A players (people rated between 1800 and 2000) can square off in a USCF-rated, three-round Swiss tournament. Between the rounds, all games are analyzed by GM Ben Finegold.

View More

Giving Thanks That It's Over

[imagefield_assist|fid=8579|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]The Thanksgiving Open was quite a strong event, with 9 GMs (including powerhouses Nigel Short, Alex Onischuk, and Yury Shulman) and a few IMs to boot.  Unfortunately, we only had about 140 participants, but what we lacked in attendance, we made up for in strength.

I had a bad tournament (what else is new) losing to Ron Luther in round 1, then getting crushed by Bob Holliman in round 2! Oh wait, that was a nightmare I had once, 'never-mind' (say that with the Rosanne Rosana Dana voice). In reality, I scored 4-2 winning 4 and losing 2 (unusual for me in an open tournament, to have 2 losses and no draws!).

View More

Better late than never

[imagefield_assist|fid=8576|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]I guess I should wrap up my Spice Cup report, or Dave Chappelle might send me a "Wrap It Up" button for the holidays.

I lost in the last round to IM Irina Krush. It was an up and down affair (don't tell Lynne!), and I made many mistakes in critical positions. I started out well, playing 1.b3! This is a good choice against Irina, who has quite extensive "book" knowledge in a lot of lines, but is not as experienced (aka old) as I in different positions. I have played 1.b3 often in blitz, and, I am starting to play 1.e4 a lot, so I figured she would have good prep for that.

View More

Kasparov visits Saint Louis, Short puts on lecture and simul

[imagefield_assist|fid=8568|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis was abuzz on Monday, November 29, as a group of 150-plus eagerly awaited the arrival of the legendary GM Garry Kasparov. The crowd, which had already been treated to a weekend with GM Nigel Short at the Thanksgiving Open, mingled around the casual play area on the main floor of the chess club. Some played chess and some casually chatted, but all were devoting at least some of their attention to the front door of the club.

View More

Dates set for 2011 U.S. Chess Championships

[imagefield_assist|fid=8111|preset=frontpage_200x200|lightbox=true|title=|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=200|height=200]SAINT LOUIS, November 30, 2010 – The 2011 U.S. Championship and 2011 U.S. Women’s Championship have been set to take place April 13-28 at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (CCSCSL).

These two prestigious events will be held concurrently, and each will feature the largest per capita prize fund in history. More than $230,000 will be at stake in both events.

View More