2020 Annual Thrive! Chess Tournament

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Where: 2020 Thrive! Conference, Embassy Suite-Terrace 1, Winston-Salem, NC

When: Thursday, August 6, 2020. Check in and pairing at 2:30-2:55.  Play from 3:00 PM – 6:30 PM.

Who:    All players aged 5-18.  To be eligible your child must know how to play chess. There is a cap of 50 players.

Sections:    Primary (ages 5-11) and Youth (ages 12-18)

Format:  Rapid Pairing (Swiss System) Tournament. Games are limited to 40 minutes.  All players will complete at least 4 games to be eligible for a trophy. The tournament director can call or cancel a game that is moving too slowly.

Entry Fee: $13/player.

Please fill out the registration form at the bottom of this page.

FAQs — please read!

1.  How will I know that NCHE has received my registration and payment?
     After registering online, you will receive a receipt as confirmation that NCHE has received your registration. If you don’t get this, check you spam folder.

2. Is this a knock-out tournament? Do I go home if I lose a game?
    No! This is not an elimination tournament.  All players can and should play at least 4 or more games within the 3-hour time frame.

3. Will my young child have to play high school students?
    Depending on numbers of students of different ages, there will be at least 2 separate age-level groups. An elementary student would be in a different section than a high school student.

4. My child just started playing chess. Can he or she still compete?
    Players should know how the pieces move, including the details associated with castling, checking the King, promoting a pawn, and capturing “en passant.” Players should be able to recognize an illegal move, as well as checkmate and stalemate.
The tournament director reserves the right to disqualify from further participation any student who clearly does not know the basic rules of the game. For example, we will disqualify someone who clearly doesn’t know how a Knight moves or what is meant by “checkmate.” No refunds of any kind will be given to any player so disqualified. So, please be certain that your child can play an entire game correctly according to the rules of chess before signing up for this tournament.

5. How are the scores determined?
    A player gets one point for every game won, half a point for every game drawn, and zero points for every game lost.  A player’s point total for the tournament is found by adding that player’s points. Thus, a player who wins one game, draws two games, and loses one game will end up with two points for the tournament (1 + .5 + .5 + 0 = 2).
Any player who cannot commit to staying for the entire time will most likely not be able to win a trophy. Any player not completing at least 4 games will not be eligible for a trophy.
Players who complete a game in less than the allotted time are welcome to play “for fun” games while waiting for time to run out. These “for fun” games do not contribute to their tournament score.

6.  What about awards?
     Individual awards will be given out for 1st – 3rd places in each section.  Additional awards may be presented as determined by the tournament director.

7.  When will all the awards be announced and handed out?
     The awards ceremony will begin as soon as possible after the last game is completed which should be around 6:00 pm. It usually takes about 15 minutes to get the lists together and get set up for the ceremony and another 10 minutes or so to distribute the awards, take pictures, etc. Everyone should be on their way by or before 6:30 pm.

8.  How do you pair players?
     In general, we will attempt to pair players with equal scores when possible and also to equalize color allocations. This is a “Rapid Pairing Chess” tournament which means that each child plays a game, comes to the tournament director (TD) when finished, and will be paired up with another player as soon as one with similar scores has finished his or her game. Because of the need to match players with similar scores, there may be some wait time for players between games.  Please note:  participants who have a US Chess Federation rating will be paired according to their ratings.

9.  This is not a USCF rated tournament. Will you be enforcing USCF rules?
       In general, yes, we will be. Exceptions: Neither the rules for score keeping (taking notation) nor timing and use of a clock will be enforced.
One rule in particular that will be enforced is the “touch move/touch capture” rule. This means that if a player touches one of that player’s own pieces in a manner that can reasonably be interpreted as the beginning of a move, then the player will be required to move that piece, if that piece has a legal move. If a player touches an opponent’s piece in a like manner, then the player will be required to capture that piece, if there is a legal way to do so. Note that an accidental touching of a piece, such as brushing it with a shirtsleeve when reaching for another piece, does not constitute a violation of this rule.
Another important rule that will be enforced: Players must not make any remarks or show facial expressions concerning any other game and must focus specifically on only their own game.
While by and large we will be going by USCF rules, we will try to avoid becoming too technical with these rules, and enforcement of other USCF rules will be on a case-by-case basis.

10.  What if I need to leave the tournament early and unexpectedly?
        In the event that you decide to leave the tournament early, please notify a tournament director before leaving and return your pairing card. Breaks for use of restroom do not require that you inform the TD.

11.  Am I going to be required to keep score?
       Score keeping (chess notation) will not be required, and we will not be furnishing score sheets. Players may elect to keep score if they so choose, but they will need to bring their own score keeping equipment and must be able to notate their games without slowing down play.

12. Will I have to use a clock for my game?
      No clocks will be used or required in any of these games.

13. What should I do if I have a problem, or I don’t understand something?
If you have a problem or a question about anything during the game, you should raise your hand to summon the tournament director. This cannot be stressed too strongly. Do not take your opponent’s word for anything. Your opponent does not necessarily know the rules any more than you do. The tournament director is here to answer questions and to solve problems, so please don’t hesitate to get him involved. Once a game is over and both players have agreed to a result, then that result is going to stand, and it is too late for the tournament director to do anything.

14.  Is there a cap on the number of participants?
      There is a cap of 50 players. Online registration will be cut off after that number has been reached. Check at the tournament site to see if space has become available due to others having withdrawn.

Contact NCHE activities director Evelyn Bickley at evelyn.bickley@nche.com if you still have questions.