By Seth Daniel
Few aren’t aware of Everett’s dominance on the sporting field, but many might not be aware of the 20-year-old tradition of outstanding chess players and instruction in the city as well.
Started more than 20 years ago, the annual Everett Scholastic Chess Tournament, for children up to 18 years old, will take place this Saturday, April 29, at the Parlin Library.
“It’s a wonderful tournament,” said Librarian Stacy DiBole. “Our kids play on Saturday morning. It is open to adults. It’s nice because kids can play against kids or adults. Chess really help you organize your brain structure in terms of strategy and helping kids to know how to think ahead, in terms of what your next move will be. It’s not reaction like a lot of video games. You have to be strategic and see the whole board. It’s a great activity for kids and we love being involved in it.”
Chess teacher Ed Duchovny, who lives on Ferry Street, has been teaching chess for years and is the current caretaker of the tradition.
Duchovny said he has been working with young chess players for years, and has had the benefit to meet with many of the World Champions as well. He said the tournament at the Library is always very popular and that follows a trend in the country.
“In America, Chess is very popular right now,” he said. “There are about 20 million children playing chess. It’s a very big number…The tournament is very good because everyone is very, very, very happy.”
DiBole said the tradition started some 20 years ago with chess enthusiast Teresa Kerrigan.
When Kerrigan had to leave, Michael Sullivan picked up the tradition.
“He picked up where she left off,” said DiBole. “He was organizing official tournaments. He did well here and grew the program really well.”
From there, the program began to collaborate with Everett High School, and the school began to field a very good chess team.
Now, Duchovny has taken the reins and has led a very successful program. A very accomplished teacher and player, he is a great resource for the scores of children that play year-round at the library.
Sign-ins for the tournament begin at 9:30 a.m. and competition starts by age category at 10 a.m. Championship rounds will be held in the afternoon.
For more information, call the Parlin Library at (617) 394-2302.