Friday, December 31, 2010

New Tables Added for 2011 Illinois Kick-Off

Thanks to everyone who has RSVP'd in advance for the 2011 Illinois Kick-Off. Thanks to this advance notification, and some swift negotiating, I have been able to arrange for some more space for Sunday. We'll be able to accommodate all-comers (within reason!).

Just to be on the safe side, I do recommend dropping me a note with name and USCF ID # (and grade level for juniors), but if you happen to pick up a hitchhiker or two en route, and they play chess, chances are we'll be able to accommodate them as well. (Make sure they know how to take notation and are aware of en passant capturing!)

None of this would be possible without our incredible host, Julie, at Borders Books. So thank you yet again. Drive safely and I'm really looking forward to Sunday (especially when the Packers redeem themselves against the Bears -- updates available at tournament).

Friday, December 17, 2010

2011 Illinois Kick-off RSVPs Coming Due

One week from this posting, advanced registration ends for the first USCF-rated tournament to be held in Illinois in 2011. Please drop an email to or leave a note with this posting. Details on the January 2nd tournament are available on this site (look to the upper right of this page!).

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Ten Brave The Winter Elements

Despite winter storm warnings and winds exceeding 40 mph, ten daring souls made it to Borders Dec. 14 for an afternoon of competitive chess.

I was saddened that folks from downstate had to turn around due to white out conditions on Illinois 51. Similar troubles beset an Elgin-based member who encountered challenges on Plank Road (thanks for the text message, glad you are safe!).

Nonethless, we were able to get in three rounds of 30-minute time control games, with Phil J. (of Elgin) and Bill R. (of DeKalb) taking top honors with 2.5/3.  Darin L. (of Sugar Grove) took a clear third with 2.0/3.

In order to accommodate a few non-USCF members and due to other late arrivals, the group elected to keep the tournament "off the books" so to speak. Results were not submitted to the USCF; no entry fees were collected. Nonetheless, Julie and the gang at Borders provided some wonderful gift bags and Phil, Bill and Darin walked away with some yummy hot cocoa and tasty chocolates. Other prizes were saved for our next event, January 2nd  (HAVE YOU SENT IN YOUR RSVP, YET? SEE ABOVE!).

So thanks Al, Brian, Cliff, Don R. and Nathan (along with his siblings!) for coming out on this blustery December day! I know I won't soon forget it (and I'm sure Nathan won't soon forget dropping his queen under time pressure or the squandered opportunity to call a fallen flag -- There's always next time!).

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Weather Update for Sunday -- It's a Go!

Today's tourney is ON as scheduled. Winter storm warnings be damned, we're going through with this thing and we'll be at Borders, but I understand if the forecasts are intimidating to those of you who like to castle on your fourth move. No guts, no glory, right? If you can make it, we'll be glad to have you play today! Safe travels. GAME ON!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Cornfield Challenge II This Sunday!

It's that time of month again as the DeKalb Chess Club hosts another USCF-rated tournament this Sunday, December 12, at Borders Books in DeKalb.

With an ever-growing turnout for our Open Play sessions, it's time to see if anyone is capable of repeating as champion in one of our local tournaments. To date we've had three different individuals take top honors in our open Sunday tournaments. Who will be next?

With holiday season upon us, our valued-host Borders has more merchandise out for public browsing so we are a little pressed for tables. No more than 24 players can be accommodated. Due to these space limitations, it's highly encouraged to RSVP to reserve your place in the tournament pool by dropping an email to or posting a comment below. Otherwise, it's first come, first served.

Again, registration is from 11:15 to 11:45am. Play will begin at noon with everyone playing four rounds. Subsequent rounds are tabbed for 1:30, 3:00 and 4:30pm. Hopefully, the time control allows chess combatants enough time to think strategically while allowing for sufficient variety over the course of the afternoon.

Bear fans will be provided updates during the latter part of the afternoon as the Patriots invade Soldier Field. We're keeping a slot in the tournament open for Tom Brady in case he wishes to engage in a real game. Other NFL scores available upon request.

Updated Weather: Despite the forecast for some light snow for Sunday, we remain optimistic that the tournament should be readily accessible. For out of towners, Borders is located on Illinois Route 23 which is cleared rapidly by local crews (and chess-appreciating elves). Compared to Monday's forecast temperature in the single digits, Sunday's expected high in the teens will be downright balmy! Besides, Borders' cafe offers some of the most delicious hot chocolate this side of the Rockies.

All in all, it should be a perfect day to remain inside with us, pushing a little wood (or plastic) rather than fighting the Christmas shoppers at a crowded mall or conducting snowball fights with your neighbors. Chess is so much more civilized!

See post above for weather-related alterations.