Greater Peoria Chess Foundation

The Greater Peoria Chess Foundation is a 501(c)3 non profit organization dedicated to encouraging chess in our community and school systems. Chess helps students to develop many life skills that will help them as they navigate with challenges that lay ahead.


Elbert Fang Wins Illinois Open Reserve Section

Elbert Fang scored a perfect 6-0 to win the Illinois Open Reserve Section over the Labor Day weekend. The reserve section is limited to players rated under 1800. Elbert win raised his rating 140 points and now sits at 1649.

Elbert's brother Vincent and Michael Li scored 2 points playing in the Open Division along side tournament winner Grandmaster Vladimir Georgiev (2543) and BSO winners Tim McEntee and Troy Curfman. Michael drew games with two Class A players while Vincent best game was a win over a 1678.

Garrett Wins 2019 Peoria Championship

Daniel Garrett won his 2nd Peoria Championship when a momentary lapse dropped a Queen in a tied match, allowing Daniel a comeback victory after an early first round loss.

The Peoria Championship finals match started with an upset as Alex Beecher picked off an early victory. As it often does, it came down to a missed threat in a messy complicated position. So Alex was up 1-0 in games and Daniel needed to win or draw the next game to keep his hopes alive. The match goes to the first one to score 2 points or more with a lead.

Daniel started strong in the second game and kept the initiative throughout. Alex finally buckeled in a difficult Rook and pawn endgame after fighting back against a prepared opening. The game tied the match at one game apiece. A winner in the third game would have the title.

The third game was a Kings Indian Defense with Daniel playing the Be2 line which he has played often recently. The game reached a complicated middle game which Fritz & Stockfish evaluated as 0.00 (that is completely even) at the point of the bluder. There were two ways forward for Alex (Black), including the tricky Nfd5, but instead missed the threatened King Queen fork.

All in all it was a good hard fought match by both players. The final score was 2-1 with no draws.

3 Way Tie in 56th Annual Bradley Summer Open

The 56th Annual Bradley Summer Open, the longest running university sponsored chess tournament in the nation, ended in a 3 way tie amont Master and BU graduate Tim McEntee, Troy Curfman and Peoria 6th Grader Owen Zhang. While the master and his travel mate were sharing a quick last round draw on board one, Owen was competing against Bloomington's own young prodigy, Vamsi Munaganuri, in what might be a peek at future central Illinois tournaments and winning a very complex endgame. The 3 winners all finished with 3 wins and a draw.

The Reserve section, restricted to players rated 1400 and below, was won by Peoria Richwoods first board Donald Egan who scored a clean 4 wins in 4 games.

Full crosstables and prizes can be found at the tournament site here.

Karagianis & Getz Tie the 55th Annual GPO

Peoria Master Pete Karagianis and former Peorian Henry Getz tied for the title at the 55th annual Greater Peoria Open April held 6th & 7th at the Mark Twain Hotel in downtown Peoria. Pete entered late as he had to miss the start and Henry ran up 4 straight points before falling in the last round to Karagianis in an extremely exciting game.

58 players attended and had a great time enjoying the comfortable and spacious Packard Building playing hall. Alex Relyea, chairman of the USCF tournament director committee, traveled 1150 miles from New Hampshire just to play in the GPO.

Full crosstables and prizes can be found at the tournament site here. Almost $2,000 in prizes were given out.

Area Players Win 36 Medals at IESA State Finals
While Dunlap Middle School sweeps in all grades ...

36 Peoria area players won silver or bronze medals at 2019 IESA State Finals played at the Peoria Civic Center February 22nd & 23rd.

Dunlap Middle School team finished in the Top Four in all three grades, a rare sweep for IESA schools. Dunlap won the championship in 6th Grade and finished runner-up in 7th Grade and 4th in 8th Grade. Seven other Peoria area also schools made top 10 in one of the grades. Players played 7 games - 4 on Friday & 3 on Saturday. A perfect 7 wins in 7 games was required for Gold, 6 for Silver & 5 for Bronze.

Local winners at this year's event:

  • 6th Grade Teams: 1. Dunlap Middle School, 5. Dunlap Valley MS, 8. Brimfield, 10. Peoria Washington
  • 6th Grade Individual Silver (6.0): Stella Chen, Dunlap MS, Alex Fei, Dunlap MS, Joshua Wang , Dunlap MS
  • 6th Grade Individual (Bronze 5.0): Bhargava Malya, Dunlap Valley, Ethan Chen, Dunlap MS, Ella Cunningham, Dunlap MS, Reed Florey, Brimfield, Zack Irish, Washington Central, Agrini Neekhra, Peoria Washington
  • 7th Grade Teams: 2. Dunlap Middle School, 4.Morton Junior High, 7.Washington Central, 9. Metamora
  • 7th Grade Individual Silver (6.0): Noah Li, Dunlap MS
  • 7th Grade Individual (Bronze 5.0): Joey Julich, Morton JH, Shaan Kashyap, Dunlap MS, Harris Koo, Dunlap MS, Shriyans Pendli, Dunlap, Roshan Raja, Dunlap Valley, Brady Peterson, St Thomas, Matt Robinson, Morton JH, Michael Robinson, Morton JH, Tyler Sass, Dunlap MS, Matt Savage, Washington MS, Mason Siegel, Kevin Yang, Dunlap MS
  • 8th Grade Teams: 4.Dunlap Middle School, 7.Metamora St.Marys
  • 8th Grade Individual (Silver 6.0): Kayden Hubbard, Brimfield
  • 8th Grade Individual (Bronze 5.0): Mason Brown, EP Central, Matthew Choy, Dunlap MS, Benjamin Eckstein, Metamora StMarys, Colin Goebel, Washington Central, Brett Granger, Morton, Bryce Hammar, Metamora, Ben McClelland, Washington Central, Abrar Monyem, Dunlap MS, Tommy Nemec, Washington Central, Suchinder Singh, Dunlap MS, Jonathan Staisberg, Metamora StMarys, Ryan Tran, Dunlap Valley, Tim Wan, Dunlap MS

GPCF Receives PPS Community Contribution Award
PPS Community Contribution Crystal Award

Peoria Public Schools awarded the 2017-18 Community Contribution Award to the Greater Peoria Chess Foundation at their June 11, 2018 Board meeting. GPCF provided chess sets and training software to PPS schools and supported a chess tournament at Von Steuben Middle School in 2017. Planned for 2018-19 are more tournaments and a program to provide low cost US Chess memberships to students.

Pete Karagianis Named US Chess Assistant Director of Events

Peoria's own Pete Karagianis has been named US Chess Assistant Director of Events.

"Pete’s calm demeanor, high energy and capable articulation will be valuable assets. He looks forward to sharing his vision of a quality event – a vision born from both his passion for the game and his wealth of experience within US Chess. We are happy to have him as part of our team." - US Chess.

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Club News

Daniel Garrett is starting a study group that will meet on Monday nights during the Kingsmen Club meetings at the Life Together Center. to review the Yusupov learning series. The study group is for strong players who want to advance by group study of serious tournament positions from Grandmaster games. This may be a good opportunity to work through difficult analysis with other players contributing so that all ideas can be shared.

This will be the first study group for the club, but it has great potential. It is worth giving a try.

September 9th starts the club's Fall into Chess tournament. Although it has a faster Game 45 time control, it is still a qualifying tournament for the 2020 Peoria Championship. This is a 4 round event which last through the month of September.

The Monday night adult chess club now meets at the Life Together Center (formerly the Great Central Insurance Bldg) at Sheridan & War Memorial 7 to 11pm. (Click here to see the location on a map.)


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