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Ferndale Chess Jam event invites local youth to play

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A local chess tournament delayed by this year’s winter weather has been rescheduled for April 13th and will be held at the Ferndale High School cafeteria and library.

According to Event Director Randy Kaech, the event is a tournament and playday for young Ferndale chessplayers of all abilities, from beginner to experienced, age kindergarten through 5th grade.

The Ferndale Championship is part of the regional Chess Jam tournament and is in its 22nd year.

Awards and titles will be given to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers in each grade, among K-5th grade students residing in Ferndale or attending Ferndale schools (Beach, Cascadia, Central, Custer, Eagleridge, Lummi, Skyline).

Kindergarten through 5th grade players with winning scores (three wins out of the five rounds) qualify to participate in the 2019 Washington State Elementary Chess Championships, to be held this year at the Tacoma Convention Center on April 27th.

Kaech says anyone with an interest in playing chess and playing chess better is invited. “We’re all learning and you don’t have to be a Grandmaster to have fun at chess. Besides, the Swiss pairings system will match you with opponents of equal ability (after a few rounds),” Kaech says on the event website.

Kaech says chess is surprisingly easy to learn to play but hard to master. To play, one only needs to learn how to setup the board, how the 6 different pieces can be moved and how the game ends (capture your opponent’s king). The event website has links to several resources for those interested in learning and improving their gameplay.

Players must register in advance by registering online at the Chess Jam BYC Registration Page before 7pm Friday, April 12. Entry fee is $17. Scholarships are available. Proceeds will benefit the Ferndale High School Chess Club.

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