Virginia Scholastic Chess Association Newsletter

February 12, 2010

This newsletter is sent to families who participate in Virginia Scholastic Chess Association tournaments. The VSCA is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization dedicated to promoting scholastic chess in central and southeastern Virginia. Please email to subscribe, unsubscribe or change your address.

Grafton Winter Chess Festival (Grades K-12)

Registration is now open for the Grafton Winter Chess Fest, to be held Saturday, February 27, 2009 at Grafton Middle School in York County, Virginia. In addition to the VSCA scholastic tournament, the Grafton Festival will also include an adult quads event, hosted by the Virginia Chess Federation (VCF).

The scholastic tournament is open to students in kindergarten through 12th grade. Players are divided into 2 sections based on their grade in school: Trophies will be awarded to the the top 5 individuals and to the top 3 school teams in each section. Advance registration for the scholastic event is online only, and closes at 7:00 AM Thursday morning, February 25. Current membership in the U.S. Chess Federation (USCF) is required for all players.

The entry fee for the adult quads event is $20, with a $50 cash prize for 1st place and $25 for 2nd place in each quad. USCF membership is required. Online registration is available only for the VSCA scholastic tournament. To enter the quads event, email VCF president Mike Hoffpauir, or sign up at the Registration Desk on the day of the tournament.

Please visit for information and to register online for the scholastic tournament.

Hampton Roads Sports Festival Scholastic (Grades K-12, Rated and Unrated)

Registration is also open for the Hampton Roads Sports Festival Scholastic, hosted by the Virginia Chess Federation, to be held on Saturday, February 20, 2010 at the Hampton Roads Convention Center in Hampton, Virginia. The scholastic event includes K-5 Unrated, K-5 Open, K-12 Unrated and K-12 Open sections. USCF membership is not required for the Unrated sections. Details and online registration are available at the event website,

The Hampton Roads Sports Festival offers three other chess events in addition to the scholastic tournament: the Hampton Roads City Chess Championships (unrated, USCF membership not required) on Saturday, February 20; the Hampton Roads Chess Championship (USCF-rated, USCF membership required) on Saturday-Sunday, February 20-21; and a Simultaneous Chess Exhibition by International Master Oladapo Adu on Friday, February 19. For details on all of these events, visit the Hampton Sports Festival Chess Activities website at

State Scholastic & Collegiate Championships (Grades K-12 and College)

Registration is also open for the Virginia Scholastic & Collegiate Chess Championships, hosted by the Virginia Chess Federation, to be held on Friday-Sunday, March 12-14, 2010 on the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, Virginia. The event includes two separate tournaments. The blitz tournament at 6:30 pm Friday evening will have five double-blitz rounds and three sections: K-5, K-12 and Collegiate. The main tournament on Saturday and Sunday will have six rounds and five sections: K-3, K-5, K-8, K-12 and Collegiate. Details and online registration and payment are available now at the Virginia Chess Federation website, State Ch/Home.htm.

Tournament Registration and Entry Fees

Advance registration for VSCA tournaments is ONLINE ONLY at, and closes at 7:00 AM on the Thursday before the tournament. In order to accurately process entries, we cannot accept mail, phone or e-mail registrations. The advance registration entry fee of $7 may be paid by mail (preferred) or at the tournament. Players who do not register before the 7:00 AM Thursday deadline can register at the tournament between 8:00 and 8:45 am on Saturday, but they will need to pay the late entry fee of $14. Players who register later than 8:30 am on Saturday may or may not be paired for the first round, depending on the number of late registrations.

Please note that this registration and fee information does NOT apply to the Virginia Scholastic & Collegiate Championships in March, which are organized by the Virginia Chess Federation.

Tournament Check-in

In order to help us complete registration and start our tournaments on time, please check in at the registration desk by 8:45 am, even if you have mailed in your payment. This will minimize the number of names that we have to call in order to check attendance, and will also allow our volunteers to close registration and balance the books earlier. Players arriving after 8:45 am (8:30 am if you have not registered in advance) will risk not being paired for the first round.

If you have registered online, but later find that you will not be able to attend, please email by Friday night so that we can withdraw your name. If you have to change your plans at the last minute and will be absent or late, please try to let someone else know so they can tell us at registration.

USCF Membership

Current membership in the U.S. Chess Federation (USCF) is REQUIRED in order to play in VSCA tournaments, except for sections specifically designated as non-rated. In order to avoid delays on Saturday, please join or renew directly with USCF at Please do not mail a paper application form or check to USCF, since this may cause delays in processing your membership. If you are unable to join or renew online, please plan to fill out a membership application at the tournament. You can check membership status at The U.S. Chess Federation maintains a national database of ratings (relative playing strengths) for adult and scholastic players. In order to update the ratings following each tournament, all players in the tournament must be current USCF members.

Please visit our website at for the latest news and information.