Posts Tagged ‘SPFNO’

Important Announcement Regarding the 2017 SPFNO 

April 2, 2017


Dear Chess Community,

As a chess coach, there are times when I have had to make the difficult choice to pass one of my favorite students to another instructor in order to better serve his/her best interests. It is never a decision that is taken lightly, not least because of the close bond a student and teacher create when working for years together. But as a coach, our first priority has to be the best interest and growth of the child even if that means stepping down as their coach. 

Recently, I used the same rationale in regards to the future of the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys. Over the past three years, I have worked closely with Susan to plot a good course for the SPFNO. Now facing many new distractions unrelated to this event, I do not think it would be in the best interests of the SPFNO for me to steer it to its next destination. For this reason, I am stepping down as chief organizer and handing the helm over to my good friend Judit Sztaray of Bay Area Chess. I look forward to seeing the mission of the SPFNO continue under Judit Sztaray’s direction.


Sincerely,

Chris Torres

Final Reminder to Register Your Child for the SPFNO Chess Championship

February 22, 2016

Dear Fellow Chess Parents,

 

Do children who play competitive chess develop skills that will give them advantages over their non-chess peers? 

 

Yes, I certainly believe so!

 

My name is Chris Torres and I am the Organizer for the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys. If you sign your child up right now, I can promise your family a very special kind of tournament experience perhaps unlike any other you have ever attended.

 

First of all, by signing your child up for the 2016 SPFNO, you are guaranteeing your child the opportunity to meet and hang out with the former World Champion Grandmaster Susan Polgar.

SPNO 2015 u16u18boys

But that’s only the beginning of the fun they’ll have when they start playing chess with us!

 

  • The first place winner in each championship section:

*Qualifies for the Prominent Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls (Girls sections only).

*Qualifies for the 2016 FIDE World Youth Chess Championship.*

*Wins $100,000 in prizes and scholarships to Webster University (U16/18 sections).

SPNO 2015 team

 

  • The SPFNO will take place at a 34,200 square foot facility which we will not be sharing with any other activities. This means our players can be conformably spread out and parents have plenty of space to mingle while waiting for their kids to finish games.

 

  • At the SPFNO your family will be treated to free parking and offered a fine selection of affordable food cooked in a real restraint on site.

 

  • The SPFNO has its own state-of-the-art website which will keep you up to date on tournament results and pairings without requiring your participation in a stampede to view the wall charts.

 

 

The Fun of Watching Your Child Learn and Grow through Chess

 

Part of the fun of the SPFNO is watching your child meet and make friends with other youngsters who love chess as much as they do. As a competitor in the SPFNO your child will get to participate in a chess tournament attended by many of the best chess players their age in the U.S.A.

SPFNO 2015 u8boys

Another part – and an important one – is having your child get his/her games analyzed by brilliant players such as Grandmaster Daniel Naroditsky who will be analyzing games for free at the SPFNO.

analysis

At the SPFNO your child will be placed in an environment where chess is considered cool and where being a high achiever is the norm. Basically, we are providing the ideal conditions for your child to learn and grow through chess.

 

The Excitement of Shaping the Future through Chess

 

For some families, the excitement of joining the SPFNO is reason enough to attend. For other families, it will be because of the enormous learning opportunity the SPFNO creates. For me, it is knowing that we, as parents, are doing something to make the world a better place. I honestly believe that many of our future “thought leaders” will be present at tournaments like the SPFNO.

 

Also, The SPFNO is an official qualifying event for the FIDE World Youth Chess Championships. What could be more exciting than earning the chance to compete against the best chess players in the world?!

 

By signing our own kids up for such events, I believe we are shaping the future through chess. Now that’s real exciting!

 

Come Play Chess with Us

 

So join the Torres Chess and Music Academy and the Susan Polgar Foundation for the fun of it, the learning opportunities and the excitement of shaping the future. The price goes up on Wednesday so join today!

 

Sincerely,

Chris Torres

Chess Dad

#HappyNewYear from the Torres Chess and Music Academy

January 1, 2016

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2015 was a banner year for scholastic chess in Northern California! One of the high points was undoubtedly the California premier of the Susan Polgar Foundation National Open for Girls and Boys. The feedback we received about the tournament was overwhelmingly positive with some very insightful suggestions as to what parents and coaches would like to see changed in the 2016 edition of the SPFNO. So, for 2016, we have adjusted the categories to be a better fit for players of all strengths, added a club section, and increased the already impressive number of trophies and awards we will be handing out. However, the majority of the details for 2016 Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys have been left untouched including the fact that the tournament will be held at the same location and same weekend as in 2015. If your child is planning on participating in the 2016 SPFNO please take advantage of our early bird pricing so you can get the best deal on this incredible chess opportunity. To register and find more details on the tournament, go to www.SPFNO.com.

 

Happy New Year,

Chris Torres

President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy

Organizer for the SPFNO

www.SPFNO.com

The 2016 Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys

December 14, 2015

PowerPoint Presentation

 

The prestigious annual Susan Polgar Foundation National Open was created in 2006 in order to give more opportunities to young chess players in the United States. The 2016 SPFNO is an official qualifying event for the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Invitational for Girls and the 2016 FIDE World Youth Chess Championship. Entrants will be broken into sections by gender, age and rating. There will be $100,000 in prizes, which will include trophies, chess prizes, and college scholarships.

For more information or to apply online please visit:

www.SPFNO.com

California Chess Classes to Feature the Games of Bobby Fischer

September 16, 2015
In honor of the movie Pawn Sacrifice, National Champion Chess Coach Chris Torres is pleased to announce two new chess programs that will feature the games of Bobby Fischer.
Chess Champion Bobby Fischer

Chess Champion Bobby Fischer

 

 

Beginning September 19, 2015

The Fremont Achiever Chess Team

Saturday from 1:00 until 3:00

43475 Ellsworth St.

Fremont, CA 94539

(510) 226-6161

REGISTER HERE

 

 IMG_3064

 

 

Beginning September 27, 2015

The Achievements Academy Chess Team

Sunday from 2:30 until 4:30

7027 Village Parkway

Dublin, Ca 94568

(925) 812-3737

REGISTER HERE

 

 

IMG_3019

 

These classes will provide players with instruction that will quickly increase their ability and understanding of chess. During the first hour of every session, Chris will use Bobby Fischer’s brilliant chess moves as the basis for his lectures. After the lesson, all students will play one round of a five round Swiss Style rated chess tournament and receive1-on-1 time with Coach Torres to identify strengths and weaknesses in their play. Space is very limited for these special classes so be sure to reserve your child’s spot today by emailing a request to chesslessons@aol.com

All participants must be members of the USCF. If your child is not a member, your child can join or renew their USCF membership at the first meeting, or by going to uschess.org/

 

 

2015 SPFNO

 

Don’t forget to sign up for the Susan Polgar Foundation’s Nationwide Open for Girls and Boys on February 27-28 in San Mateo California.

In the course of the two-day chess festival, the SPFNO will award qualifications for:

*The Prestigious Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls

*The FIDE World Youth Chess Championship 2016

*As well as $100,000 in scholarships and prizes

For more information and to register please visit: www.SPFNO.com

 

Plan Ahead for the 2016 SPFNO

April 28, 2015

SPFNO Flyer 2016

 

More Details to be announced soon!

The Thrilling Conclusion of the 2015 Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys

March 30, 2015

After the final round of the 2015 Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys, there remained two-way ties for first place in four different sections. Rather than use computer generated tiebreaker scores, we let the children decide the matter themselves over a five minute game of blitz chess. Depending on the section, these finalists were playing for a seat in the FIDE World Youth Chess Championship, a seat in the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Invitational for Girls and a $50,000 college scholarship to Webster University. All four blitz games games commenced simultaneously and each board had its own tournament director watching every move. Below is the unedited footage from the thrilling conclusion to the 2015 SPFNO.

Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys: Results and Thank You

March 2, 2015



Dear Chess Parents and Coaches,

Thank you for signing your children up for the 2015 Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys. Organizing a tournament of this magnitude is a challenge and was a phenomenal success because of the players, coaches and parents who chose to devote their weekend to scholastic chess. Our entire tournament staff is very grateful for the pleasure of working at the first FIDE World Youth Chess Championship qualifier ever held in California and watching your children enjoy being a part of history at the SPFNO. I am determined to make improvements in our performance and tournament structure each year we run this event. If you have any changes in particular you would like to see don’t hesitate to submit your idea for consideration by sending me an email. I look forward to reading your feedback and, of course, seeing you on February 26-28 at the return of the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys.

Sincerely,
Chris Torres
Organizer for the SPFNO
www.ChessAndMusic.com



http://www.chessandmusic.com/susanpolgarfoundation/





http://chessdailynews.com

Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys: FAQ

February 24, 2015

nationalopenbann

There’s a tangible buzz in the air all around Silicon Valley because the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys is on the horizon. Facebook walls and Twitter news feeds have begun to highlight the coming event and of course the hundreds of talented youngsters who will be competing. Even my five minute coffee breaks aren’t immune from the last minute concerns of the young chess parents entering their child in the SPFNO for the first time. It is for these parents that I dedicate this post in which I will share my answers to the most frequently asked questions about the 2015 Susan Polgar National Open for Girls and Boys. Check back often as this page may grow!
Q: Where and when will the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys take place?

A: The SPFNO will take place at the San Mateo Event Center on February 28 through March 1. The address is 1346 Saratoga Drive, San Mateo, CA 94403

Q: Can I sign my children up online?

A: Of Course! Just follow the instructions on our webpage
http://www.chessandmusic.com/susanpolgarfoundation/

Q: Is my child ready for the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys?

A: Whether your child has just learned how to move the pieces or is a seasoned tournament pro, the 2015 SPFNO has you covered. In addition to the two day championship event, we also are offering a one day non-rated tournament for new chess players. Every child in attendance will also have access to free instruction from the excellent chess instructors from the Torres Chess and Music Academy. We guarantee that the 2015 Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys will be a quality learning experience for all who are in attendance.

Q: If my child loses his/her first game is he/she eliminated from the tournament.

A: Losing will not eliminate your child from the SPFNO. The tournament structure we will be using is commonly referred to as a Swiss Style. In a Swiss Style tournament all participants are allowed to play in every round and are paired based on their current score with another player with the same score.

Q: Does my child need to bring a chessboard from home?

A: No, all boards and chess sets will be provided by the tournament organizers. However, it is advised that your child bring his/her own chess clock if they own one.

Bring your own chess clock if you have one.

Bring your own chess clock if you have one.

 

Q: Are parents allowed to watch their child’s tournament games?

A: At the start of every round, parents will be permitted into the tournament hall to help their child find his/her proper seat but then will need to return to the designated waiting areas in order to ensure fair play.

Q: What is a USCF ID number and rating?

A: A United States Chess Federation identification number is required in order to play in the rated main event. All games played in this section will be submitted to the USCF for rating purposes. A USCF rating is a number that reflects the skill level of a player based on his/her past performance in rated chess play. If your child does not have a USCF Membership they may purchase one for $17 at the tournament or online at ChessAndMusic.com

Q: I see that there is also a Simul, Blitz Tournament and Puzzle Solving Competition. Can you briefly explain how these side events work?

A: Sure thing!

On February 27th, Susan Polgar will be facing 30 children simultaneously at the Bay Area Chess Center in Milpitas, California. 25 of the children have already reserved a spot in the simul and five more will be randomly chosen from any other children in attendance who are signed up for the SPFNO but didn’t get a reservation in the simul. Anyone is welcome to come and watch Susan Polgar play her games and meet her after she finishes.

Blitz is chess lingo for speed chess. The SPFNO’s Blitz Chess Tournament is scheduled for 5:45PM on Saturday, February 28th at the San Mateo Event Center. All participants will be placed in one section and play five games each with 5 minutes on each side of the chess clock. After all five rounds, trophies will be awarded to the top ten players with the highest total score.

Solving chess puzzles is an important part of every chess players studying routine. At the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys solving chess puzzles is an event unto itself. Any child signed up for the puzzle solving competition will be given a limited amount of time to solve chess problems of varying difficulty levels. Trophies will be awarded to the top ten performers as well as the top under 1600 and top under 1000.

Q: What time should I arrive?

A: I advise chess players to arrive a half hour before the tournament starts and double check their name and section placement. Since round one starts at 9:00am on February 28, I recommend showing up to the tournament hall at 8:30am.

Q: Do I need to bring food?

A: You can but the Event Center also has a great restaurant with affordable priced kid friendly food.

The San Mateo Event Center has a great selection of food on site!

The San Mateo Event Center has a great selection of food on site!

 

Q: I need a hotel. Where can I stay?

A: The Sofitel San Francisco Bay is a modern luxury resort located next to the Event Center. Susan Polgar, the entire tournament staff and many of the participants will be staying at the Sofitel San Francisco Bay If you decide to stay at the Sofitel San Francisco Bay be sure to ask for our special chess rate for a price that’s almost too good to believe!

 

the Sofitel San Francisco Bay will offer chess families the beautifully appointed accommodations of a French luxury hotel at a “chess rate” that is unbelievably affordable.

the Sofitel San Francisco Bay will offer chess families the beautifully appointed accommodations of a French luxury hotel at a “chess rate” that is unbelievably affordable.

 

Q: When will it be done?

A: The award ceremony for the unrated sections starts at 6:45 on Saturday, February 28th and will be over around 7:30. For the rated section in the Main Event, the award ceremony also begins at 6:45 but on Sunday, March 1st. I imagine that all the awards will be distributed by 8:00pm.

Q: My child is not getting a trophy. Do I need to wait for the award ceremony?

A: I have ordered custom medals for all participants in the main event who do not qualify for a trophy. The medals have the State of California cut into them as well as the official SPFNO logo.

Q: Can my child participate in the Unrated Section if they already have a USCF rating.

A: No, any rated players who are accidentally signed up for the unrated section will be automatically moved into the appropriate Main Event category.

Q: The San Mateo Event Center is really large. Where will the tournament be exactly and where should I park.

A: the tournament will take place in the Fiesta Hall at the San Mateo Event Center. You should park in the East Parking Lot by gate 7. We are in the Fiesta Hall. See the diagram below

grounds_map_12_lg

Q: Are there midday lunch breaks?

A: Of course, anytime that your child is not involved in a tournament game he/she may enjoy a snack or meal. I would recommend eating lunch around 11:30am.

Q: If we can’t attend both days can we just enter the simul or blitz and what requirements are there for participation?

A: I highly recommend treating the simul, blitz and puzzle solving competitions as added bonuses. However, any child who knows how to play chess may enter the side events regardless of if they are participating in the main event.

Q: What time does tournament play end each day… What restaurants can you recommend for dinner?

A: On both Saturday and Sunday the main tournament rounds will be concluded before 4:45 pm. If your child is playing in a side event, I recommend taking advantage of the restraint on site at the San Mateo Event Center. If not, there are numerous restaurants in the area.

Q: What activities are available on site or nearby for families to enjoy?

A: During the SPFNO, we will be providing free chess instruction, musical performances and demonstrations from the designer of Coach Jay’s Chess Academy. After the event, your family will have access to all the great entertainment the San Francisco Bay Area has to offer on any given weekend!

Q: Must parents remain on site while their children compete?

A: I always recommend that at least one parent stay on site to support their child. However, if your child has an adult (such as a chess coach or parent of a friend) who is willing to watch your child, you may make arrangements for them to do so. Please make sure your child knows who is supposed to be watching them and when you will return.

Q: What advice should I give my child before they play at the SPFNO?

A: Most important is to take their time. Next every time it is their turn they should analyze all checks, captures and threats. Also, if they have a question about the legality their opponents move they should pause their clock and raise their hand to signal a tournament director. Finally, once they agree to a result of a game it is over, regardless if it was truly checkmate or not. So again, remind your child to take their time.

Q: How do I know who my child is supposed to play?

A: Before each round we will post pairings that are alphabetical by name as well as pairings listed by tournament rank. In addition, we will post tournament standings for each section regularly during the event.

Q: Is this tournament played with the touch move rule?

A: Of course! The SPFNO is played following all of the rules of chess according to the United States Chess Federation rule book. If your child touches a piece that he/she does not intend to move he/she needs to announce, “adjust” immediately before placing his/her hand on the piece.

Q: In the description of the tournament, I saw “In all sections the top 3 teams win trophies.” Is the team the school used at the time of registration for USCF or can it also be a club where the kid is getting chess coaching from?

A: The team trophies are for the school chess teams. To play for a school chess team, a child must attend that school for his/her overall education.

Q: I registered my son for the 2015 Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open Championship for Girls and Boys. I haven’t received a registration confirmation. How can I check to see that he is registered in the appropriate events and age categories?

A: Simple! Just go to www.ChessAndMusic.com and check the lists of preregistered players. If you notice anything wrong, please send corrections to chesslessons@aol.com

Q: What’s the best way of getting updates during the tournament without slowing down the tournament directors?

A: Follow us on twitter https://twitter.com/torreschess or on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ChessAndMusic. We will be posting updates and pairings with the hashtag #SPFNO.

 

Preparing for the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys: Part 3

February 9, 2015

or Why You should be Using Coach Jay’s Chess Academy to train your child

Round BW HR

With only twenty days left before the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys, do you ever wonder what you can do to prepare for the event with your child. If you download Coach Jay’s Chess Academy you literally can become your child’s primary chess coach.
coachjay1
Jay Stallings, a time honored chess coach from Southern California, is a “Grandmaster” of making chess practice fun. His app uses a comprehensive method which he devised from his decades of practical experience teaching young children how to play chess. Each lesson on the app is followed by several exercises designed to test your child’s understanding of a key concept. As your child completes the exercises, he/she earns stars that accumulate until your child earns a new belt (just like in martial arts.) This reward system not only encourages your child to study chess but it also allows parents to gauge their child’s progress.
coachjay4
As a successful chess coach myself, I have found Coach Jay’s Chess Academy to be very helpful for teaching chess to my own daughter. At first, I thought it might just be a child friendly version of the ubiquitous online “tactics trainer,” but it is in actuality a full chess curriculum cleverly disguised in a fun little app. By using Coach Jay’s Chess Academy with my daughter, I even discovered several tips and tricks for teaching lessons to students in my weekly chess classes.
PolgarflyerFIDE(rev2)
With only twenty days left until the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys, there is no better time to download Coach Jay’s Chess Academy than right now. Start today and you will definitely be helping your child to be the best they can be at the 2015 SPFNO and beyond.
For more information on the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys and Coach Jay Chess Academy, please read:

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