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Stay home. Stay safe. Play chess!

Due to the COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) pandemic, health officials everywhere encourage people, especially those in at-risk categories, to stay at home as much as possible. We’re doing our (tiny) part to make this easier. We’ve increased server capacity and lifted the daily limits for users of the free version, so you can spend more time playing chess! More 🡢

Almost heaven, West Virginia

There are 5,541 players listed on US Chess in West Virginia, though that number includes inactive players, expired members, and even the deceased. West Virginia has 1.78 million residents, so a little more than .3% of residents have been, or are currently, part of US Chess. Near the end of March, I will visit West Virginia to promote chess in that state. This article shares why chess may be a good addition to schools and provides a chess puzzle from 1848. More 🡢

George Aboud and Laura Schein in Emojiland

You can be the hero

In the Ruy Lopez, Exchange Variation, White’s light-squared bishop is traded off on move 4. The light-squared bishop moved just twice before exiting the game. Trading doubles Black’s pawns, which matters. Thus, the light-squared bishop does “matter anyway” despite its brief existence. More 🡢

Julia Butters

Chess on the red carpet

Before the Academy Awards (the Oscars) are handed out to each year’s winners, movie stars walk the red carpet. They pose for photos and are interviewed. On February 9, 2020, one young actress brought a black knight with her. This article explains why, and then presents a chess problem, from Grandmaster John Nunn’s most recent book, which features a black knight. More 🡢

Walder,Michael vs Melville,Cailen J

Heart in San Francisco

The song “I left my heart in San Francisco” fits the Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club. Chess players who have visited the Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club once yearn to return to it; those lucky enough to live in San Francisco visit it often. In this article, I reminisce about my first visit to San Francisco and then share an exciting game from the third round of the Max Wilkerson Memorial Tuesday Night Marathon. More 🡢

Simultaneous Chess Exhibition

On January 11, 2020, I gave my annual simultaneous chess exhibition at the Flower Mound Public Library. 77 people attended in this fourth year of the event, with 32 lined up and waiting at the door for the 2 p.m. start of the exhibition. I began by playing against 10 players. As players finished, they were replaced with the next names on the waiting list. Two hours later, I had played 20 games, finishing with 18 wins, one draw, and one loss. More 🡢