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How to start or find a chess club

May 30, 2011

So, you have thought about how great it would be to have a chess club on your campus. But, you don’t know where to start — or maybe you don’t know how to play yourself.  Never fear, there are some great resources out there to help.

  • For inspiration and practical tips, read how a parent of gifted kids started a chess club in this blog post.
  • USChess.org‘s website includes the official rules of a chess and an interactive program to teach you chess.
  • For elementary & middle school students interested in learning or practicing chess, the Bozeman Public Library holds a chess club on Tuesdays 3:30 to 5:00pm in the library small conference room.
  • The Bozeman HS chess club meets on Thursdays during lunch in Mr. Lazoich’s room.
  • High school students are  welcome to play at the MSU University Chess Club which meets Monday nights, 7:00-9:00 pm at the north end of the SUB Union Market dining area when the university is in session.  According to the University Chess Club:  “We’re here to have fun playing chess with new or old opponents.  We’re players of all levels, including several beginners, so don’t worry that you might not be good enough to play with us.  Invite your friends to come along.  If you’d like to stay and play beyond 9pm, please bring your own chess set.” If you join their email list by contacting chess@montana.edu they will let you know about local chess events.
  • MSU University Chess Club sponsors free K-12 Scholastic Chess Tournaments in spring & fall, which get announced on their website.  The next tournament will be 4/30/11 in the Bozeman Public Library.

Some colleges even offer full scholarships for chess students!  University of Texas-Dallas, the University of Maryland-Baltimore County, Stanford and Texas Tech are usually the prime contenders in chess championships.

And each year, Montana gets to send one girl to the Susan Polgar Girls’ Chess Invitational in Texas,  which incorporates a three-day intense training with Susan Polgar and her team of chess instructors, followed by a 6 round (g/60) championship tournament.  Polgar was the first female player to qualify to compete in the Men’s World Chess Championship.

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