Season Kicks Off with Scholastic Fundraiser, Season Opener

The Chicago Blaze, Illinois’s very own chess team, is about to begin its second season in the U.S. Chess League. Our first game of 2009 takes place tonight, and I would like to invite all chess fans in Chicago and Illinois to follow the team, root for it, enjoy it, and support it.

Chess at the Ballpark
Also part of the season opening will be a scholastic tournament to raise funds for the team on Saturday, September 12, at U.S. Cellular Field. Here is a flyer with the details that you can tack up on the fridge. Please help spread the word about this tournament to kids and the parents of kids in grades K-12 who play chess. We need a good turnout, and it should be a lot of fun. Every kid who plays in the rated tournament will get a spiffy, new Chicago Blaze t-shirt.

Here’s how you can follow the Blaze.

  • First, go to our main Web site to find out more about the team. In particular, take a look at the season schedule. The regular season runs through early November, and since we hope to make the playoffs this year, we expect to be playing beyond that. (Please bear with us if portions of the site aren’t entirely up to date; the Blaze is a volunteer effort, and we’re doing our best.)
  • Come back regularly to this blog as we post news.
  • Follow us on Twitter. We’ll be posting news about the team and the league, and if we can manage it we’ll be doing some live tweeting during the matches.
  • Become a fan of the Blaze on Facebook.
  • Attend the matches at the Holiday Inn Skokie, 5300 West Touhy. Fans are welcome to attend the games at no charge.
  • If you can’t make it to the games, follow them live on the Internet Chess Club.

First Match Tonight Night
The first match is tonight, 8:00 Central time, against the Arizona Scorpions. The Blaze will gather at the Holiday Inn and play the Scorpions online, via the Internet Chess Club. I hope you can join us either in person or virtually. (If you don’t have an ICC subscription, tune in to Twitter.)

The Blaze has the blessing and support of the Illinois Chess Association, along with many individual people whom we hope to thank profusely in due course. (And one person I’d like to thank right now: Maret Thorpe, for creating the gorgeous flyer for the Celluar Field tournament)

Please let me know if you have any questions. The goal of the Blaze is to be a contributing part of the Chicago and Illinois chess communities and to help chess grow and prosper in the Windy City and the Prairie State. Please join the fun. Thanks.

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