Saturday, February 20, 2010
All girls' chess in Santa Rosa
All-girls' chess match held in Santa Rosa
By MARTIN ESPINOZA
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Published: Saturday, February 20, 2010 at 5:40 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, February 20, 2010 at 5:40 p.m.
Cassandra Wright, 6, pulled at her hair, clasped her hands, gripped her head, broke into countless expressions of pain and frustration and, finally, cried.
She did not expect her opponent to be so determined. “She did everything she could to make me lose,” said Cassandra, shortly after her second game during an all-girls’ chess tournament Saturday in Santa Rosa.
Competition can be brutal and some people do not win or play gracefully, harsh but important lessons for a 1st grader, though nothing a parent’s arms couldn’t soothe.
The chess tournament held at Ursuline High School was sponsored by Chess for Kids, a non-profit that organizes after-school chess programs in Sonoma County.
The event, billed as the county’s first all girls’ chess tournament, benefitted the Sutter North Bay Women’s Health Center in Santa Rosa.
Proceeds, primarily the $20 entry fee, were expected to be a little less than $1,000, said Jolie Cook, president of Chess for Kids.
It also was intended to attract more local girls to the game, which Cook said, “makes kids smart, teaches critical thinking, promotes patience and improves concentration.”
Girls are often put off by the mind-bending competition of the game, she said, noting that girls comprise only about 20 percent of the kids who participate in Chess for Kids programs.
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