MECA President's Letter

11.18.18 MECA President Michael Dudley has penned an update sharing what has been going on and what is planned to come related to the Maine Chess Association and chess in Maine in general. We welcome your comments and suggestions.

A message from Maine Chess Association Interim President Michael Dudley

18 November 2018

As a chess player, I find it amazing what chess news people will compel people to engage a conversation. Quite a few times this month, I've been asked by friends and students if draws at the World Championship level are "normal" or "boring." My excitement is usually enough to dispel the second point, and explaining the intricacies of grandmaster-level chess gives people a perspective on how exciting and instructive these draws can be.

As the Carlsen-Caruana match moves on this afternoon in London, I'm reflecting on what has been a great few months of chess in Maine. Sometimes our tournaments feel as intense as the World Championship! Maine Central Institute in Pittsfield christened its first tournament earlier this month. National Chess Day featured two vibrant, well-attended events in Brewer and Cape Elizabeth. Just yesterday, three tournaments were held in the state: UMA Fall Chess in Augusta, a Houlton Open (Quad), which was unattended by five long-distance travelers who survived a spill off of I-95 unscathed, and a round robin held by those same five travelers in Bangor, dubbed the We Survived! Round Robin.

It's a good time for our game, and a good time to turn to MECA's organizational work. Elections are coming soon! Current MECA members are allowed to cast votes in MECA's elections, where we'll be electing Executive Board members for the upcoming terms. If you are not sure about the status of your membership, please go to and look for the MECA Membership List link on the left. That link contains the current list, and if you are on it with a current expiration date, you are a member and can submit a ballot. If you are not a current member and would like to join, follow the Store link, which will help facilitate your renewal through PayPal for the appropriate membership tier.

The Executive Board will be fielding some audacious proposals on December 2nd. On the docket will be planning for the State Championship, discussing new awards for celebrating our players and play across the state, and adopting a renewed Constitution that is up to date for 2018. We'll also be talking about whether to (and how to) best merge with our scholastic sister organization (the Maine Association of Chess Coaches). There is much to do, and I hope you'll join us!

Today is Game 7 of the World Championship match, so I'll end with a quick idea about why I think its visibility is so important. For the first time in 46 years, an American is challenging for that title, and it has piqued the interest of people all over the world. Many, if not most, of those people may not have ever engaged with chess otherwise. Those who have engaged me in conversation on the subject of chess this month represent many genders, ethnicities, orientations, and identities. For just the briefest of moments, those folks are expressing a desire to glimpse into chess as a community. It's the perfect chance to welcome them in.

See you over the board!

Sincerely yours,

Michael C. Dudley
Maine Chess Association


Ha, I think they were just a wee bit shaken. Besides, the spill happened in Old Town. O_O

Those "five long-distance runners" could have jogged to Houlton after the spill, no? Lol

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