Arts & Entertainment

Chess Club Set to Make Return to Scotch Plains Library in January

37efa3e2f393e810260a_Chess_Club.jpg
Alfonse Akins' son, Matthew (left) plays a game of chess against a young opponent. Credits: Photo provided by Alfonse Akins
3a49714ed280955a1c29_ChessSet.jpg
46233d720fc6f7b0794f_Scotch_Plains_Library_5-1-16.jpg
37efa3e2f393e810260a_Chess_Club.jpg

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ – Chess is a game a wit, endurance and intellectual skill. But it is also a game that has been neglected in the Scotch Plains-Fanwood community for quite some time, according to Alfonse Akins, a member of the Scotch Plains Recreation Commission.

For years, parents and children were forced to travel to neighboring towns including Westfield, Cranford, Clark, Rahway and even Plainfield to participate in organized chess matches.

That is all about to change on Wednesday, Jan. 11 at 6:30 p.m. as the Chess Club will officially launch its inaugural 90-minute bi-weekly meeting at the Scotch Plains Public Library. Children between nine- to 16-years-old are invited to participate in the free program with registration now open. Chessmaster Errol Singh of Chatham Day School and ChessmatesNJ will lead the instruction.

Sign Up for E-News

“I asked myself, ‘why do all of these surrounding towns offer the intellectual game of chess, but we don’t?’” wondered Akins, who played an integral part in the resurrection of the chess club. “That motivated me to launch this program at the Scotch Plains Library.”

“I think chess is very important to the intellectual development of our youth in Scotch Plains,” added Akins, whose 10-year-old son, Matthew, is an avid chess player.

Akins was especially thankful for the efforts of Michelle Willis, Director of the Scotch Plains Public Library, who helped get the program off the ground and even helped raise the funding needed for chess sets. He also acknowledged the assistance of Matt Mercurio, Scotch Plains Recreation Director, Evan Murray, Chairman of the Scotch Plains Library Board, Councilman Llewellyn Jones, and Mike Walsh, Chair of the Recreation Commission.

Sessions are limited to Scotch Plains and Fanwood cardholders only. For more information, contact the Scotch Plains Public Library at 908-322-5007.

TAPintoSPF.net is Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s only free daily paper. Sign up for our daily eNews and follow us on Facebook and twitter @SPF_TAP.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Scotch Plains/Fanwood

Why We Keep Kosher

Why We Keep Kosher

This week's parshah, Shemini, introduces the Torah's dietary laws. Animals must chew their cud and have split hooves to be kosher, fish need fins and scales, and a list of forbidden fowl is enumerated.

To those of us in Jewish education, it is a continuing source of disappointment that so many Jews still believe the kosher laws to be outdated.

Politics IS Government in Union County

April 21, 2018

Dear Editor:

After Bruce Patterson of Garwood was stopped from speaking at the Union County Freeholder meeting of March 22 regarding the politics behind refusing to give the party line to a sitting Freeholder, I thought this brazen suppression of free speech could not go unanswered.

At the April 19 meeting I answered with these comments.

After ten years of following government in Union ...

Helping Teenagers Deal with Prom Night Stress

April 18, 2018

Prom can be one of the most exciting times for your teenager but at the same time one of the most stressful. 

It can also be very stressful for parents as they prepare themselves to accept that their teenager is graduating and soon going away to school, while planning a weekend away after prom night. Going to the Shore for the weekend or somewhere overnight has become more of the ...

Union County College to Begin Esports Program in the Fall of 2018

April 25, 2018

CRANFORD, NJ -- Union County College (UCC) will become one of 63 schools nationwide, and the first county college in New Jersey, to offer a coed intercollegiate esports program, also known as Electronic Sports. Esports is a multi-player video game program that competes with colleges and universities in the U.S. and Canada. UCC Esports teams could compete against two and four-year ...