Thursday, October 9

Western States Open

Update on October 9: I sorted the advance entry list by section and rating using Excel, and have posted the document on my website. There are presently 187 players signed up, on target for a turnout in the 300s.

The Western States Open is one of my favorite annual tournaments. It is also one of the largest and strongest annual chess events west of the Continental Divide. Organizer Jerry Weikel and his staff work to make the weekend as enjoyable as possible for all. In fact, the Western States draws more players from Northern California than any local adult event except Labor Day. If you still have doubts, read my story in the February 2008 issue of Chess Life about last year's 25th anniversary tournament.

Unfortunately, the October tournament in Reno is a bit difficult for many children to attend. Either you miss school on Friday or you need to take a round 1 bye and drive up in the early afternoon (maybe cutting class for the last hour or two). There is no 2-day schedule in Reno, unlike most other big tournaments. Despite the conflicts, I expect to see a number of local juniors up in Reno, including about a half dozen of my students. Wish us luck!
  • Event: Western States Open
  • Dates: October 17-19
  • Location: Sands Regency Hotel and Casino in Reno, NV
  • Format: 6 round swiss in 7 sections (Open, Expert, A, B, C, D, U1200)
  • Schedule: Reg: Fri 8:30-10. Rounds: Fri 12, 7, Sat 10, 6, Sun 9:30, 4.
  • Time control: 40/2, 20/1, SD/30 (total of up to seven hours)
  • Prize fund: $40,000 based on 400 players.
  • Visit the Reno Chess Club website for entry forms.
  • Click on the advance entry list.
Although this tournament is hosted at a casino, the chess venue is on the second floor, above the gambling floor. The event is quite kid-friendly and many juniors play each year. If you request a room in the Regency or Dynasty towers, you can take the elevators between your room and the tournament hall without passing through the casino. See you in Reno!

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