Chess Camps: Coming Soon to an Area Near You
It may only be the middle of winter as you read this, but believe it or not, it's not too early to get your application in to reserve your slot at a summer chess camp right now! Whether your child is gifted in chess, or just wants to improve his skills, chess camps are a great-and fun-way to invest a portion of his or her summer. The oldest Chess Camp in the country is Castle Chess Camp, which will be celebrating its 23rd year next summer from July 18 - 25, 2004 in two locations: Bradford, PA and Atlanta, GA. With a student-teacher ratio of 9:1, Castle can boast of a top-notch faculty, consisting of such prominent chess coaches as GM Joel Benjamin, GM John Fedorowicz, GM Arthur Bisguier, GM Irina Krush, GM Rusadan Goletiani, and many more. Volleyball, basketball, softball, soccer, kickball, swimming, tennis, ping-pong, pizza parties and speed- and bughouse tournaments are just some of the ways that students here can burn off steam after a morning of intensive chess. Students leave this camp with a detailed written analysis by their advisor about their strengths and weaknesses, and also a written plan for personal improvement. Check them out on the web at www.amchess.org.
Another summer camp of great renown is Kopec's Chess Camp at The Lawrenceville School in Lawrenceville, N.J. They are located about 15 minutes from Princeton, and boast of "First rate instruction in a first rate setting." Instructors here include IM Dr. Danny Kopek, GM Walter Browne; Life Master Hal Terrie; and the renowned "Mr. G", Stephan Gerzadowicz who runs the short day program for ages 7-10. Catering to ages 7 through adult, the Kopec Chess Camp runs from June 20 - 27, and June 27 - July 4, 2004. There are many boarding or commuter options available, to fit almost any schedule. Visit their website at www.kopecchess.com.
If you live in the Long Island area, you'll definitely want to check out the Long Island Chess Nuts Summer Chess Day Camp, located at Adelphi University in Garden City, NY. This year the camp runs from June 28 through July 2, from 9:30 am - 4:30 pm, with extended hours available for working parents. Margarita Lanides is the camp director, who is assisted by NTD, FIDE Master Joel Salman. The staff are highly qualified and highly rated chess professionals, with a staff/student ratio of 1:8 or better. This program is open to all children from 1st - 10th grade, with beginner to advanced classes offered.
USA Chess, Inc. is the largest, premier chess camp organizer for children in the United States and will be hosting a camp this summer in Dalton, NY, headed by National Master Noureddine Ziane, and the best children's chess instructors in North America. Their third annual New York Chess camp at the Dalton School will be held in August 2004. Half and full day sessions are available. Look them up on the web at www.chesscamp.com for more details.
Cathi Belcher is the Editor of Empire Chess, the quarterly publication of the New York State Chess Association. She lives in Bloomingburg, N.Y.