Friday, April 17, 2015
14th Annual Queen City Classic Chess Tournament
Local broadcasting celebrity Cris Collinsworth is probably best known for his incredible in-game analysis and witticisms on Sunday Night Football or his actual pigskin prowess on a football field, in either order likely depending upon your generational divide. However, locally, he is as known for his philanthropic presence from dancing the night away dressed as Batman at the Fort Thomas Education Foundation Dance to his latest charitable endeavor- emcee of the Queen City Classic Chess Tournament where children from the Pleasant Hill Academy grade school who have been participating for the last seven months in the Chess in Schools program (sponsored by the Cris Collinsworth ProScan Fund- CCPF) had the opportunity to battle test their chess skills against local, national, and even international chess masters.
The tournament, which began fourteen years ago, took place over the March 20th weekend and was held once again at Paul Brown Stadium. Corbin, Jory, and Penny Pomeranz, founders of the tournament, first got the idea to hold it at the stadium after leaving a football game and envisioning how neat a Chess tournament could be at this venue, especially compared to the typical tournament. They envisioned emcees, grand masters, ongoing chess lessons, and a fun and engaged crowd compared to the stale tournaments where dinner was vending machine leftovers.
It is safe to say they executed well as this year’s tournament boasted 700 participants from eleven different states and 400 from Greater Cincinnati alone.
Now, 19 different local schools participate in the Chess in Schools program and hundreds of kids each year can brag that they’ve gone from never having played chess before to playing against an internal grand master in only 7 months. For more information about the tournament or about CCPF, find the Queen City Class website here and CCPF here.