The 2008 National Open/Las Vegas Chess Festival starts tonight and is perhaps the most entertaining tournament in the land. World Championship contender Gata Kamsky will be present to compete and to give exhibitions. He will play Veselin Topalov in the fall for the right to play the winner of the Anand-Kramnik match. The match will take place in Lvov, the Ukraine and the funding has been secured.
Susan Polgar will also be present and will host a number of events including both Girls’ and Boys’ Championships. The winners will vie for a scholarship to Texas Tech. There will also be a camp and a puzzle-solving contest. (see events)
The National Open has been hosted by Fred Gruenberg for the past 15 years since he became noted for his “Put the Fun Back into Chess” tournaments in Chicago. Those tournament featured complimentary snacks throughout the tournament, raffles and all types of surprises. He decided to take his show on the road to Vegas and the tournament has been a success. Players from all over the country and world will partake in the $100,000 tournament and no doubt will test their skill at poker and other diversions.