On Saturday, February 2 and Saturday, February 9 scouts from all over the National Capital Area Council competed in the Council’s five-round chess tournament, the Akela Chess Classic. The February 2nd event, held at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Herndon, VA, was the Scouts BSA tournament, open to all scouts in troops, crews and ships. Seventeen scouts competed in two brackets: age 10-12 and age 13 and up. In the younger-scout bracket, one scout took first-place honors, with one scout finishing second, and three scouts finishing third. In the older-scout bracket one scout took first-place honors, with three scouts finishing second and three scouts finishing third. The first-place winner in each bracket finished with a perfect 5-0 score.
The February 9th event, held at St. Raphael School in Rockville, MD, was the Cub Scout tournament, open to all scouts in Cub Scout packs. Twenty-seven scouts competed in two brackets: Lion/Tiger/Wolf and Bear/Webelos/Arrow of Light, with awards given for first, second, or third by rank. One Tiger took part, winning first place for his rank. There were one first-place, two second-place, and one third-place finishers in the Wolf rank. For the Bear rank, one scout finished first, one finished second, and two finished third. The Webelos rank had five first-place finishers, three second-place finishers, and one in third place. Rounding out the tournament were one first-place Arrow of Light scout, one in second place, and three in third place. The first-place Wolf and Bear each had a perfect 5-0 score.
Each round of the Akela Chess Classic is limited to one hour, with touch-move rules in effect; under these rules if a player touches a piece he is obligated to move it. All participating scouts must know, in advance of the tournament, the rules of chess and how to play. The 2019 Cub Scout tournament was the 14th annual tournament, and the 2019 Scouts BSA tournament was the 8th annual tournament.
A fun and exciting time was had by all participating scouts. All are looking forward to the Akela Chess Classic next year!