Chess.com Gives $25,000 To Fund North American Chess Cup For Children With Disabilities

chess.com is happy to foster the growth of the royal game by giving $25,000 to help fund the 2022 North American Chess Cup for Youth With Disabilities happening June 21 through 26. This amount will help the organizers to invest in staff for the event and to fund appropriate healthcare on-site to give players the best and safest experience. The money may also help players who need to travel to attend the tournament, helping to introduce new players to tournament chess.

The event results from a partnership between Chess.com and ChessKid.com with ChessAbilities Inc., a non-profit organization. In its first edition, the annual event will be held at Embassy Suites Denver Tech Center North in Denver, Colorado. Open to all children and young adults with disabilities living in Mexico, Canada, and the US, this event will be US Chess-rated.

This event will provide a safe environment for young people with disabilities to compete in an over-the-board tournament. It will also show players how to start competing in OTB events in their country or state, inform parents where and how these tournaments occur, and explain how to sign up for them.

“The North American Chess Cup was created to provide a new yearly chess competition for children with disabilities. More than just a chess competition, this event brings together children from all walks of life and gives them the opportunity to forge lifelong friendships with other children through their shared love of chess,” said Kevin McConnell, the event’s organizer. “In addition, it will show these children that chess is a sport in which they can equally contend, on an even playing field, with their non-disabled counterparts.”

More than just a chess competition, this event brings together children from all walks of life and gives them the opportunity to forge lifelong friendships with other children through their shared love of chess.
— Kevin McConnell, event organizer

This tournament is open to any youth chess player under the age of 21 living in Mexico, Canada, or the US. The player must show proof of their disability (letter from a doctor or other medical professional outlining the details of their disability).

“The resilience of these young men and women is extremely impressive. Chess is the perfect way for them to express what human beings are capable of doing, instead of focusing on what they cannot. On behalf of Chess.com and ChessKid, we’re honored to be partnered with Chess Abilities,” said Carey Fan, ChessKid CEO.

This will be a US Chess rated tournament and will follow all US Chess rules and regulations. Though the event will be officially rated, organizers emphasize that it is open to a broad range of skill levels. “We know and expect that there will be some outstanding games, but we want to welcome participants not only to enjoy the unique opportunity to bond with other families and experience the amazing Denver culture,” McConnell said.

Event organizers will also be hosting a range of activities for the families, including chess workshops taught by Women Grandmasters Tatev Abrahamyan and Katerina Nemcovaclive entertainment given by local disabled artists, and a field trip to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science on Friday, June 24.

WGMs Tatev Abrahamyan and Katerina Nemcova will host live workshops. Photos: Maria Emelianova/Chess.com (Abrahamyan) and Andreas Kontokanis, CC (Nemcova).

Players will compete with their peers by rating, grade, and age in one of four divisions:

  • K-5 (Kindergarten grade 5)
  • 6-8 (grade 6-8)
  • 9-12 (grade 9-12)
  • Open section (open to all ages and grades)

Players will be grouped according to their age/grade and Chess.com/ChessKid.com rating within each division.

2022 North American Chess Cup for Youth With Disabilities
Griffin McConnell, the star from the Griffin’s Gambit documentary. Photo: Chandler Toffa.

Players participating in the tournament will receive gift bags and compete for trophies in each division. Competitors will also have a chance to win college scholarships during the event.

Entry Fee

  • If received by February 15: $60
  • If received by March 1: $75
  • If received by March 15: $90
  • If received by May 1: $100
  • If received after May 1: $110

Rooms are available at the discounted rate of $149 per night at Embassy Suites. Call 303-696-6644 and ask for the ChessAbilities Inc. block if you’re interested.

Contact Information

If you have questions or need more information, please get in touch with McConnell at 303-501-0974 or by email at mcconnellk2@yahoo.com. You can also learn more about the event through its Facebook page.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.