Skip to main content

Chess, anyone?

May 04, 2015 02:27PM ● Published by Steven Hoffman

They come with a common purpose.

Astrophysicists, business managers, college students, teachers, musicians, retired seniors, engineers, salespeople and others arrive with equipment in hand, eager to battle their opponent. It's time for the Newark Chess Club's weekly matches.

“Many people don't realize chess is a competitive sport,” said John Anderson, vice president of the Delaware State Chess Association and former president of the Newark Chess Club. “It is competition at its best. There is no game like it.”

The Newark Chess Club is a forum that brings local chess players together to practice, learn and compete for national rankings. It is the only club to offer weekly rated games in the state. It's a chapter of the U.S. Chess Federation.

The Thursday night games are great competitions, said Anderson, and feature some of the best players around.

“Chess is a mental battle, not a physical battle,” said Brad Thomas, president of the Newark Chess Club. Thomas plays about 100 tournament-level games a year. He's a highly rated player and is on his way to winning his third Delaware grand master title this year. His other wins were in 2005 and 2009.

Anyone can learn the game of chess, as the rules are fairly simple. It takes a lifetime to master it. The game does not discriminate because of age, gender or physical abilities.

“At 65, chess keeps my mind going,” Anderson said. “For kids, it helps them to focus and learn to tune out other things.”

The great thing about playing with a chess club is that players are matched by their ratings and skill levels. There's a place for anyone to learn the game and compete with their peers.

“The game is about great visualization,” Thomas said. “Chess develops mental toughness.”

Anderson and Thomas said chess is about strategy, tactics, and controlling the center of the board. It's a battle to prevent your opponent from gaining position. If your attack is blocked, you retreat and must quickly think of something else.

“Through training, you build the mental energy needed to help you win,” Anderson said. “A good chess player looks many moves ahead, You look at the whole board, and at patterns, to calculate moves.”

The Newark Chess Club uses the Swiss system of competition to determine ratings. At the end of the five-week tournament, the results are calculated by a formula and the results are filed with the U.S. Chess Federation. Players move up and down in ratings depending on how well they played during the tournament.

Winning competitions takes practice. It takes being challenged on a regular basis to refine your skills and improve your game. That's one of the things Thursday evenings are about for the members of the Newark Chess Club. Once the match is complete, the players can analyze the battle, determine what they did correctly and where things went wrong.

Many club members also participate in chess tournaments throughout the region. Both Anderson and Thomas have played tournaments up and down the East Coast. Monthly tournaments in Maryland offer players three games of chess in one day, with cash prizes for the top finishers.

“Chess is a lot like life, because in life, if you make a wrong decision you will have a bad day,” Anderson said. “In a chess game, if you make one bad move, you will probably lose the game.”

The Newark Chess Club meets at 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays at Union United Methodist Church (345 School Bell Rd., Bear, Del.). For more information, visit newarkchessclubofdelaware.com. More information about the Delaware State Chess Association can be found at delawarechess.org.

****

At the end of 2014, members of the Newark Chess Club and Delaware's chess community were stunned with the news of the tragic death of David Owocki, 25, the Newark Chess Club's best player and its champion for the last two years.

To honor his memory, his family is sponsoring the David Owocki Memorial Chess Tournament on May 23.

“Being chess players, we would treat him like royalty,” said John Anderson, vice president of the Delaware State Chess Association. “He was very special to everyone here. David would stay after finishing his game with his opponent, and they would review and analyze the game thoroughly. Many times they would stay analyzing the game until late at night.”

The tournament will be held at Union United Methodist Church (345 School Bell Rd., Bear, Del.). It will be a quad tournament, where four people of similar ratings will play each other in three separate games of the course of the day. The person in the group of four with the highest aggregate score will win a cash prize. The tournament will be open to all UC Chess Federation members (you can register online prior to the tournament), from novices to rated players. Details are available on the Newark Chess Club's web page.




Like what you're reading? Subscribe to Newark Life's free newsletter to catch every headline

Recreation, News
  • Group Show

    02/21/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    A winter warm up of colorful, vibrant paintings. Marlene Dubin – bold mixed media abstracts; Elai...


  • Pruning for Homeowners Workshop

    02/21/2018
    10:00AM — 01:00PM

    Keep your trees and shrubs healthy, attractive, and long-lived using expert pruning techniques. I...


  • Pruning for Homeowners

    02/21/2018
    10:00AM — 01:00PM

    Keep your trees and shrubs healthy, attractive, and long-lived using expert pruning techniques. I...


  • Group Show

    02/22/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    A winter warm up of colorful, vibrant paintings. Marlene Dubin – bold mixed media abstracts; Elai...


  • Cecil Leadership Institute 2018 The Cecil Leadership Institute is designed to promote the deve...


  • Group Show

    02/23/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    A winter warm up of colorful, vibrant paintings. Marlene Dubin – bold mixed media abstracts; Elai...


  • Group Show

    02/24/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    A winter warm up of colorful, vibrant paintings. Marlene Dubin – bold mixed media abstracts; Elai...


  • Soup, Cheese, & Bake Sale

    02/24/2018
    11:00AM — 02:00PM

    Delicious homemade soups, Vermont Cheddar Cheese, desserts. 11AM - 2PM. Dine in or take out. All ...


It looks like we don't have any events for this date. You can always add an event.

It looks like we don't have any events for this date. You can always add an event.

  • Group Show

    02/21/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    A winter warm up of colorful, vibrant paintings. Marlene Dubin – bold mixed media abstracts; Elai...


  • Pruning for Homeowners

    02/21/2018
    10:00AM — 01:00PM

    Keep your trees and shrubs healthy, attractive, and long-lived using expert pruning techniques. I...


  • Pruning for Homeowners Workshop

    02/21/2018
    10:00AM — 01:00PM

    Keep your trees and shrubs healthy, attractive, and long-lived using expert pruning techniques. I...


  • Group Show

    02/22/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    A winter warm up of colorful, vibrant paintings. Marlene Dubin – bold mixed media abstracts; Elai...


  • Cecil Leadership Institute 2018 The Cecil Leadership Institute is designed to promote the deve...


  • Group Show

    02/23/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    A winter warm up of colorful, vibrant paintings. Marlene Dubin – bold mixed media abstracts; Elai...


  • Group Show

    02/24/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    A winter warm up of colorful, vibrant paintings. Marlene Dubin – bold mixed media abstracts; Elai...


  • Soup, Cheese, & Bake Sale

    02/24/2018
    11:00AM — 02:00PM

    Delicious homemade soups, Vermont Cheddar Cheese, desserts. 11AM - 2PM. Dine in or take out. All ...


  • Story Time at Immaculate Conception School

    02/27/2018
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    Please join us for stories, activities, and a little music at Immaculate Conception School. Every...


  • A Healing Journey Support Group

    02/28/2018
    06:30PM — 08:30PM

    A Healing Journey is a support group facilitated by peers and tailored for those bereaved by a su...


  • Botanical Art: Guided Studio Time

    03/01/2018
    10:00AM — 01:00PM

    Enjoy drawing and painting in the company of others in a relaxed, supportive environment. Begin a...


  • Botanical Art: Guided Studio Time

    03/01/2018
    10:00AM — 01:00PM

    Enjoy drawing and painting in the company of others in a relaxed, supportive environment. Begin a...


  • Cecil Leadership Institute 2018 The Cecil Leadership Institute is designed to promote the deve...


  • Group Show

    03/02/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Group Show

    03/03/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Tasting Journey of Modern Wild and Sour Ales

    03/03/2018
    01:00PM — 03:00PM

    Wild and sour ales have been around for centuries, but modern production techniques have made the...


  • A Tasting Journey of Modern Wild and Sour Ales

    03/03/2018
    01:00PM — 03:00PM

    Wild and sour ales have been around for centuries, but modern production techniques have made the...


  • Classical Guitar at Penns Wood Winery

    03/03/2018
    02:00PM — 05:00PM

    Brad Rau has been performing music for over 20 years all over Boston, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, a...


  • Erica Armstrong Dunbar

    03/04/2018
    04:30PM — 06:30PM

    Please join us and National Book Award Finalist Erica Armstrong Dunbar the Author of Never Caught...


  • Group Show

    03/05/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Story Time at Immaculate Conception School

    03/06/2018
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    Please join us for stories, activities, and a little music at Immaculate Conception School. Every...


  • Group Show

    03/06/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Group Show

    03/07/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Group Show

    03/08/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Cecil Leadership Institute 2018 The Cecil Leadership Institute is designed to promote the deve...


  • Group Show

    03/09/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Group Show

    03/10/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • The Front Yard Revolution

    03/10/2018
    01:00PM — 03:00PM

    Move beyond boring, look-alike foundation plantings of Japanese barberry, burning bush, and Bradf...


  • Front Yard Revolution

    03/10/2018
    01:00PM — 03:00PM

    Move beyond boring, look-alike foundation plantings of Japanese barberry, burning bush, and Bradf...


  • Group Show

    03/12/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Story Time at Immaculate Conception School

    03/13/2018
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    Please join us for stories, activities, and a little music at Immaculate Conception School. Every...


  • Group Show

    03/13/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Group Show

    03/14/2018
    09:00AM — 05:00PM

    Our March Show features landscapes, city scenes and still lifes by Ed Bronstein; gestural figure ...


  • Big Benefits of Small Trees

    03/14/2018
    01:00PM — 03:00PM

    Every garden needs trees, but not all trees have to tower above the house. Learn 15 locally adapt...


  • Big Benefits of Small Trees

    03/14/2018
    01:00PM — 03:00PM

    Every garden needs trees, but not all trees have to tower above the house. Learn 15 locally adapt...


  • A Healing Journey Support Group

    03/14/2018
    06:30PM — 08:30PM

    A Healing Journey is a support group facilitated by peers and tailored for those bereaved by a su...