2023 Chess Open bringing players from across the region to Rochester

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(ABC 6 News) – Whether you’re young or old, or know anything about chess, there’s a club for you. The Rochester Chess Club.

The club is holding its second-annual 2023 Chess Open at the Mayo Civic Center this July. The two-day event will invite more than 100 players from across the Midwest to compete for more than $1,000 in prizes.

Rochester Chess Club Director Dennis Mays tells ABC 6 News chess is all about developing critical thinking skills. Helping people learn how to plan, learn more about cause and effect relationships, and it helps with their STEM skills. On top of that, it’s a game!

“I think it helps children pay attention, focus on the task at hand,” said Mays.

“There’s some chess players who when they’re thinking about a chess game and play a chess game, the rest of their world is non-existent. Their world is that chess board and the chess pieces.”

There are rounds for all levels during the Open. Depending on how you do, you’ll go on to compete against other players in multiple rounds. But you’re not eliminated. Ultimately, whoever gets the top score in that round gets the top prize.

But, how can you join in?

“Attending the meetings, playing chess at the Rochester Chess Club. There’s a membership but it’s something that’s voluntary and you can participate in everything. If we have sanction tournaments, that’s sanctioned by the United States Chess Federation, that requires a membership.”

The Rochester Chess Club is open to anybody. Mays says he has students in elementary school to even one in their late 90s.

If you’re interested in the Chess Open, you can register ahead of time or at the door.