Friday, September 6, 2013

WBEZ interview with Jerry Neugarten

Click to listen.

What's in a name?

We get emails.... Not sure I like "ChessIQ" from a marketing perspective, but I'm often wrong about such things.
The new ChessIQ!
Hello everyone!
Welcome to the new ChessIQ
Many of you have followed the work that I've done in the past many years under the name of the North American Chess Association (NACA) and the North ShoreChess Center. As positions on a board evolve and change, so does the strategy of my approach. Does this mean the NACA is gone? No, but it's going into hibernation in terms of event organization, etc (some functions of the NACA will remain) and all of the work that my team and I do will be done under the ChessIQname.
So why ChessIQ? We can look at it from two perspectives - first the name and then the idea behind the name. The name is very easy to remember and say -ChessIQ. Simple to brand, simple to get out, easy for anyone to understand. The idea behind the name - everyone associated playing chess with high or improved intelligence, so it's a natural combination.
One of the aspects of the new website will be daily contributions from multiple sources, from amateurs to Grandmasters. We will slowly be added additional contributors and by the end of this year we should have 5-7 of them!
The name ChessIQ will also extend to our chess center (formerly called the North Shore Chess Center). The new name is the ChessIQ Academy & Chess Center, as there will be a great deal more training going on - for players, for arbiters/tournament directors, for organizers, and for trainers! The Chess Center was brought to life back on Sept 1, 2010 - a few days over 3 years - and we've hosted numerous tournaments, Grandmaster lectures and simuls, and other activities. There will be much more to come!
To get in contact with me please use my new email address which Our Facebook page has had the address changes already to  we've collapsed our other Facebook pages so it will be a single social media source. Our LinkedIn page has had the name changed already, YouTube is in progress, and Twitter we haven't decided what we're going to do with. We are aiming for the end of September to have the entire migration complete if not sooner.
Be on the lookout also for other special offerings we will be bringing out including training / chess books, tournament booklets with analyzed games, and videos. As these get released we will make announcements on them.
Thank you to everyone in the past for your support and we look forward to your support in the future!
Best regards,
Sevan A .Muradian
Group Lessons - something for everyone!

For the past 2 years we have been hosting Grandmaster lectures. We recognize that this isn't everyone's cup of tea because it's a long time commitment and can be draining, but for many it has been a great experience.
So we're taking a modified approach as part of our constant improvement of services by having 3 different types of group lessons:
  • U1000 and 1000-1400 training sessions on Sundays (60 minute lectures)
  • Monday Night Master Lectures (90 minute lectures)
  • Saturday Grandmaster Lectures & Simuls (4 hour lectures)
We did change even the Grandmaster lectures to make them a bit shorter (4 hours instead of 6) and starting the simul at4:30 as many were running quite late! We have Grandmasters lined up for November and December! Check out our website to find out who!

Our Monday Night Master Lectures will be headed up by our very own International Master Florin Felecan. When theChess Center first opened up in 2010 Florin was always there to help out and we're happy that he's accepted our invitation to be our Monday Night Lecturer!

For more information on these on these events and much more visit out website:

Check out both the Academy & Chess Center page and the Events page!


We've added some new tournament types so check it out!
We even have a Game-45 this Saturday!

Game-15 + 5 sec/ increment
Wednesday nights - 7:00pm start time - 5 rounds

Game-90 + 30/sec increment
Friday nights - 7:00pm start time - 1 round

Game-45 + 5/sec increment
Saturday Sept 7 & Oct 5
4 rounds - 10:00am start time!

Game-60 + 5/sec increment
Saturday Sept 14Oct 12Nov 16Dec 7
4 rounds - 10:00am start time!

Game-60 + 30/sec increment
4 board team tournaments - 12:00pm start time
Sat / Sun - Sept 28/29, Oct 26/27, Nov 23/24, Dec 21/22

Chess Center Championships
5R - Game-90 + 30/sec increments
Friday / Saturday / Sunday - Dec 27/28/29

For more information on these on these events and much more visit out website:
Check out both the Academy & Chess Center page and the Events page!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Midwest Class: date change

In case you didn't get the email...

Dates changed for Midwest Class!
22nd annual
Oct 11-13 or 12-13, 2013 (new dates)

Luxurious hotel, free parking, $105 special room rates

$20,000 projected prizes, $16,000 minimumINCLUDING NEW MIXED DOUBLES PRIZES: $600-300.
In 7 sections: Master, Expert, Class A, Class B, Class C, Class D, Class E

       3-day schedule: Oct 18-20, 40/110, SD/30, d10.
       2-day schedule: Oct 19-20, rounds 1-2 G/90, d5, then merges with 3-day.

Compared to past years, play will end each day about two hours earlier Sunday, one hour earlier Friday and Saturday.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

What, no captures?

Human chess at Lincoln Elementary in Oak Park, video and all, via the Chicago Tribune.

Breaking into Fort Knox

This is a pretty common trap in the French Defense, Fort Knox Variation (10 times in Mega Database 2013). I've played it several times myself. Amazingly enough, the following game was played in the semifinals of the USSR Championship! White traps Black's queen with 8.Bg5!, a common motif in the French. Black wriggles with 8...Bxf3, seemingly escaping (9.Qxf3? Qxf3; 9.Bxf6?? Bxd1; 9.gxf3?? Qxg5), but White keeps the queen trapped with 9.Qd2!, when 9...Qxd4 would be met by 10.Bb5+ followed by Qxd4.

ADDENDUM: I see that ChessNetwork did a YouTube video on this trap.

FURTHER ADDENDUM: A slightly different version of this trap occurred in Roitburd-Alvarez Vila, Wch U18 Girls Oropesa del Mar 2000 after 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bd3 dxe4 5.Nxe4 b6 6.Nf3 Bb7 7.Nxf6+ Qxf6?? 8.Bg5! (1-0, 25).

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

2013 Illinois Open

Crosstables here.  I had a lot of fun this weekend!  We were worried about tournament fatigue just a few weeks after the US Open in Madison, but I believe we had 138 noses, all with players attached. The group was very strong and very congenial.  On behalf of the Illinois Chess Association, thank you for playing! (And if you didn't play this year, why not put it on your calendar for next Labor Day weekend?)

Congratulations to the 2013 Co-Champions, Grandmaster Mesgen Amanov and Grandmaster Nikola Mitkov.  (Mesgen was first on tiebreaks.)

And thanks to ICA President Carl Dolson, who organized on behalf of ICA, directors Tim Just, Wayne Clark, and Chris Baumgartner, Illinois Chess Tour impresario Mike Cardinale, postcard mailer Adrian Brock, and everyone else who made this event possible.

"Chess at CPS Could Get Boost With New Program, but City Isn't on Board"

As they say on Twitter, retweets are not endorsements.  But definitely worth a read.