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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Chess Club finds home after 50 years

Chess news and chess trivia blog (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2010

The Scarborough Chess Club

Hi Everyone,

Chess clubs have a tradition of their own. Some of the worlds most well-known chess clubs have seen chess greats come and go and anecdotes get woven into the history of the clubs. There is a charm about chess clubs that cannot be explained in words - Internet craze can come and go.

So, we like to share this nice little story about a chess club finding a home - hopefully - after 50 years. The Toronto Observer has this nice article on how the Scarborough Chess Club has a near-permanent address.

Josef Jacobsen writes:

After an unsettled 50 years, the Scarborough Chess Club (SCC) may have finally found a permanent home.

The SCC, for much of its half-century existence, has moved from venue to venue due to operating costs and fluctuating membership. For the past year, the SCC has met in the Birkdale Community Centre.

“It’s a great facility. It’s the right size for us and it’s really accessible,” said SCC treasurer Andrew Philip. “As long as we pay our dues on time, it looks like we’re going to stay here.”
This stability is a welcome change, said club president Maurice Smith.

“We were at Macey Hall [when the club started in 1960], which was around Victoria Park and Danforth, and we’ve moved at least seven times since then,” said Smith, who joined the SCC in 1976.

The club almost closed on many occasions due to enrolment trouble in the face of computer chess dominance in the ’90s and 2000s.

“People started playing chess on the Internet and I saw membership start to drop,” Philip said. “We were down to about a dozen people in the mid ’90s. It looked pretty grim.” More players are now favouring face-to-face chess over online chess, Smith said.

Even Shirov has played at the club. Check out great photos of the club and the rest of the article here.

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  • At November 10, 2010 at 6:35 AM , Anonymous Amrit Puri, Knight Chess Academy, New Delhi, India said...

    Congratulations to them. I ran a club for well over 10 years and you should have seen the joy among our team when we finally found a place. We used to be just a 10 member club back then. Happy for all those chess lovers out there.


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