BLOOMFIELD, NJ - The scouts working on the chess merit badge will face off tonight in a tournament in the Bloomfield Civic Center. The event will include scouts from Troop 22, Troop 55, and Troop 23.

Chess has its roots in India. The first games are believed to have been played in 600 AD with pieces representing elephants,gazelle, the foot soldier, and the ruler. In 1497 the Spanish, whose trade routes included India, brought the game to Europe and England. 

The scouts have been learning about chess from Thomas Heaney, Assistant Scoutmaster Troop 22. Heaney is also the merit badge counselor. Heaney explained that of he goals of the badge is to use the lessons and strategies of chess in life. The troop also learned how to apply chess skills to the scout oath and law. 

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Some of the boys in the troop already have the chess merit badge. Those scouts are helping teach others. 

There will be another scout workshop for the chess merit badge in the Spring.