In late 2007, I had the urge to begin playing chess again after a long hiatus. So I set out to see if anything could be found regarding the chess scene around the area. I hadn’t played since High School and really didn’t know if anyone had any kind of organized activities; clubs, tournaments, etc.
My initial search didn’t turn up anything useful so I just continued to play at home. In June of 2008, I decided to look around again and found a Joplin Globe article about a tournament held the previous weekend, sponsored by the Joplin Chess Club. That led me to Bart Gibbons, who had started the local club as a USCF affiliate. Shortly thereafter my son and I started attending.
There still really wasn’t a resource, other than the club, for chess in the local area that I had found. I played around with the idea of starting a website to cater to that but kept putting if off. Finally, I decided that I would try it out and put up this WordPress site. It seemed to be a quick way to get something useful up and running.
Anyway, here it is. I sincerely hope that players in and around the area will find the site to be a good resource and will contribute, directly with articles and comments and also as readers. I welcome anyone that wants to contribute to the site and to the local chess scene in general.
The goals of the site are:
- To present players with a resource to find tournaments locally — within an hour or so of Joplin — rated, unrated, and scholastic.
- To find local clubs or places to play other players.
- To provide games from local players for study.
- To discuss chess in general.
I hope that those goals will grow beyond that and include the input from many other players in the area (or even outside the area) to reflect the chess community as a whole. This site is for those that enjoy chess. Whether that is just casual games with other local players, playing competitively in a tournament setting or chess study. Feel free to contribute your thoughts, your games, your comments.
I would like to thank all the local players I have had the chance to play and Bart for starting the local affiliate, running the club and running local tournaments. I also would like to thank Leann Stausing for starting and running the chess club in the Joplin Junior high at the time I was there and for going that extra mile to help instill a love of chess in many students. I hope chess in the area continues to grow and flourish for years to come.
One last thing to say: It’s your move.