Virginia Scholastic Chess Association Newsletter

February 26, 2019

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.

Virginia Scholastic & College Championships

Saturday, March 2, is the last day of the Early Payment Discount for the 2019 Virginia Scholastic & College Championships, to be held Friday–Sunday, March 8–10, 2019 at Monticello High School in Charlottesville. Entry fees increase on Sunday, March 3. You must register and pay by Saturday to obtain the discounted rate. The Main Event, this year featuring both "Under" and "Championship" sections, and 5 rounds rather than 6, will be held on Saturday (3 rounds) and Sunday (2 rounds). The Blitz tournament will be held Friday Evening, and the Parents & Friends tournament will be held on Saturday (2 rounds) and Sunday (2 rounds). For complete information, and to register online, please visit the Event Website.

Other Upcoming VSCA Tournaments

The Virginia Beach April Scholastic & Quads tournament will be held at Eastminster Presbyterian Church in Virginia Beach on Saturday, April 6. Registration will open March 20.

The Meadowdale Spring Scholastic & Quads tournament will be held at Meadowdale Library in Chesterfield County on Saturday, May 18. Registration will open May 1.

The Virginia Beach June Scholastic & Quads tournament will be held at Eastminster Presbyterian Church in Virginia Beach on Saturday, June 1. Registration will open May 15.

Each of these three tournaments will be open to students in kindergarten through 12th grade, as well as adults, and will include rated and non-rated scholastic sections, and Open Quads for advanced scholastic players (US Chess rating 1200+) and adults.

A calendar of VSCA events as well as other scholastic events in Virginia is available at

HRCA State Championship Warm-Up Tournament

The Hampton Roads Chess Association (HRCA), headed by VSCA Board Member Christina Schweiss, is hosting a State Championship Warm-Up tournament on Saturday, March 2, 2019 at Eastminster Presbyterian Church, in Virginia Beach. The tournament will include Novice and Elite US Chess-rated sections for experienced scholastic players and Junior Rookie and Senior Rookie sections for new scholastic players. This event will also feature US Chess-rated Open Quads for adult US Chess members and advanced scholastic players (US Chess rating 1100+). Details and online registration are now available on the HRCA website at

Championship Chess Richmond Cross-round Tournament

Championship Chess Richmond, headed by VSCA Board Member Brian Garbera, is hosting a "cross-round" tournament for grades K-8 on Sunday, March 3, 2:00-5:00 pm at Candela's Pizzeria & Ristorante Italiano, 14235 Midlothian Turnpike, Midlothian. The tournament features Quick-rated play for U.S. Chess Federation members and Non-rated games for non-members. Quick-rated Quads for adults and advanced scholastic players are also available. For more information, visit the Championship Chess Richmond website at

Stemtree Open Tournament

Scholarship Chess Business Center (SCBC), a new US Chess affiliate headed by VSCA Secretary and Board Member Mike Callaham, is hosting a US Chess-rated tournament for all ages at Stemtree Glen Allen, 10921 W Broad Street, Glen Allen 23060 on Saturday, March 30. The SCBC calendar and event information is available at

Veritas Tournament Results

48 scholastic players participated in the Veritas Winter Scholastic tournament, held at Veritas School in Richmond on February 23, 2019.

There were three scholastic sections: K-5 Not-rated, K-5 Open and K-12 Open. There were no K-12 Not-rated players.

In the K-5 Not-rated section, Caleb Kuester won the first-place trophy with a perfect score of 4.0 points in 4 rounds. The first-place team in K-5 Not-rated was the host team from Veritas School.

In the K-5 Open section, Leo Chang won the first-place trophy with a perfect score of 4.0 points in 4 rounds. The first-place team in K-5 Open was Rivers Edge Elementary School from Henrico County.

In the K-12 Open section, Arjun Venkatesh, a third grader playing up, won the first-place trophy with a perfect score of 4.0 points in 4 rounds. Anna Julia Cooper Episcopal School from Richmond won the K-12 Open first-place team trophy by tiebreaks over the host team from Veritas School.

Congratulations to all of these players and to all of our other tournament participants. Complete tournament results are available at

Hampton Roads Chess Association

The Hampton Roads Chess Association, organized by VSCA Board Member Christina Schweiss, meets on Tuesday evenings at Eastminster Presbyterian Church in Virginia Beach. Scholastic players meet from 5:00 to 7:30 pm, and adults and advanced scholastic players meet from 7:00 to 10:30 pm. Meetings include training as well as rated tournaments. For more information, visit the chess club's Facebook page at

Richmond Chess Initiative Workshops

The Richmond Chess Initiative (RCI), headed by VSCA Secretary and Board Member Mike Callaham, meets for chess every weeknight, Monday-Thursday, 6:30-9:00 pm, at Createspace, 607 Wickham Street, Richmond. Chess lessons are 6:30-7:00 pm daily, followed by free play from 7:00 to 9:00 pm. Sets and clocks are provided, and there is free onsite parking. For more information, visit the RCI website at If you plan to arrive later than 7:30 pm, please call 804-426-6058 to let Mr. Callaham know.

It's Your Move!

VSCA secretary and Class A player Mike Callaham has generously offered to analyze and comment on VSCA tournament games which players send him. If you have a game that you're proud of, or a game where you feel you could have played better, and would like Mr. Callaham to take a look at it, all you need to do is send him a copy of your complete and legible scoresheet (game notation). He will respond by email, and games which are especially interesting or instructive will be published on the VSCA website. For complete details, visit the VSCA website at

Mr. Callaham is the CEO and founder of the Richmond Chess Initiative, the coordinator and head coach of the Richmond Middle School Chess League, and currently coaches chess clubs at Boushall, Lucille Brown, Thomas Henderson and Thompson Middle Schools in Richmond; Armstrong High School in Richmond; J. B. Fisher Elementary School in Richmond; and Tuckahoe Elementary School in Henrico County. Coach Callaham has also met with chess clubs at many other Virginia schools, and he would like to visit as many other school chess clubs as possible on behalf of the VSCA. Parents and coaches, if you would like to have Mr. Callaham visit your school club for a free simul, chess clinic or lecture, please contact him at Be sure to provide contact information for the school chess sponsor/coach. This is a wonderful opportunity for your school to benefit from the help of an experienced chess player and teacher.

Visit Us on Facebook

Check out the VSCA Facebook page at, managed by parent and board member Christina Schweiss.

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. Entry fees may be paid online through PayPal (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 9:00 am on Saturday; entry fees may be higher for late entries. 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 the above information applies to most Virginia Scholastic Chess Association tournaments. Some tournaments may have different registration schedules and/or entry fees.

Tournament Check-in

To help start our tournaments on time, we have implemented the following check-in policies:

Players who pay online do not need to check in at the tournament, but they must let us know if they are not coming. Please read the following brief instructions:

All Players: If you are registering and/or paying at the tournament: If you are paying online:

US Chess Membership

Current membership in the U.S. Chess Federation (US Chess) is REQUIRED in order to play in VSCA tournaments, except for sections specifically designated as not-rated. In order to avoid delays on Saturday, please join or renew directly with US Chess at Please do not mail a paper application form or check to US Chess, 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 rated sections of a tournament must be current US Chess members.

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