Tuesday, February 01, 2005

All BCC, all the time

From the January 31, 2005 Boston Globe:
CHESS NOTES by Harold Dondis and Patrick Wolff - Globe Correspondents

In 2003, the Boylston Chess Club was in a difficult situation as the Boston YWCA decided it needed space for expansion. At a critical meeting, club members turned out en masse in a remarkable show of interest to choose a new site. By a narrow vote, they opted against a site in Dedham for one in Somerville. The president of the Boylston Club, in a report to members, said that after nearly one year in the new location, the move is a success.

The club is faring well, with tournaments almost every weekend and several days a week - including the Boylston Chess Championship - and regular instruction by Kent Leung for novices.

The club's open house was held as usual on New Year's Day. The overflow of players used the neighboring Japanese Go office for extra playing space. The winners of the rated section (Game 30 minutes apiece) were [FM] Bill Kelleher and Lawyer Times. Those who did not put their rating on the line saw [FM] Christopher Chase, [NM] Charles Riordan and [NM] Alex Cherniack tie for [the] top spot. Another new club project, the College Beanpot of Chess, held in October, was carried away easily by the University of Massachusetts at Boston against opponents at Northeastern, MIT, Harvard, and Tufts.

The club received financial support by obtaining moving expenses from the Y, and it receives income from trusts in its favor. Its financial fortunes are thus looking up. The club was incorporated as the Boylston Chess Foundation and is using that name on its website. Boylston hopes to receive a favorable charitable tax ruling to enhance its economic fortunes.

The club has added a blog site, which can be found at www.world.std.com/~boylston or by hitting http://boylston-chess-club.blogspot.com. The site is just starting but has varied information, including a posting that discusses where Bill Paschall is now (in Europe) and a report from a blogger who is using the tactical exercises recommended by Michael De La Maza's book "Rapid Chess Improvement." Members can post to the website on application, and a nonmember can be invited to participate.

Grandmaster Patrick Wolff, a two-time US Champion, offers chess exercises and more at www.wolffchess.com.
While the gist of the story about the BCC's move to Somerville is correct, a few details warrant clarification just in case a chess historian uses this source to the write the "History of the BCF/BCC" one hundred years from now:
  • The YWCA expansion involved renovating several floors (including the 8th where the BCC resided) in order to create additional low income housing.

  • The Special Members' Meeting was called at the request of several members in accordance with the Club's constitution. The purpose of the meeting was not to choose between sites in Dedham and Somerville, but instead to overturn a decision by the Board to move the club to Dedham.

  • The Board's decision was in fact overturned by the narrowest of margins (one vote more than the two-thirds majority required).

  • A couple of months after the meeting, a new Board identified and secured the Somerville location.

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