Colorful vibes at Pan-American Youth Chess Festival

Players from around the western hemisphere are in Chicago for the 2023 Pan-American Youth Chess Festival. Delegations are coming from as far as Chile to vie for age championships and titles. According to the official website,

The Renaissance Knights Chess Foundation, the International Chess School, the Confederation of Chess for America (CCA) and the US Chess Federation, are pleased to welcome the players and officials from 21 Nations from the Americas to the XXXIII Pan-American Youth Chess Festival Open and Girls, from August 11 – 18, 2023 in Chicago, Illinois, USA.

~Official Website:

The Pan-Ams have six age categories for Open and Girls sections: under-18, under-16, under-14, under-12, under-10, and under-8. Immediate IM, FM and CM titles can be earned for stellar performance in the open and WIM, WFM, and WCM for the girls (regulations).

The Chess Drum was on site in Chicago and interacted with the head of delegations for Jamaica and Brazil and captured an interview with FM Warren Elliott, one of three Jamaican coaches. There were also plenty of colorful photographs. Concurrent with the tournament was the Parliament of World Religions and there was a parade taking place celebrating interfaith harmony and world peace. It coincides with the spirit of the World Youth as many of these players will be competing against each other in many tournaments including the Olympiad.

Photos of XXXIII Pan-Am Youth Chess Festival

Photos by Daaim Shabazz

Malik Brewley, Tournament Director

Let the Tournament Begin!

Jamaica came with a delegation of 11 headed by IM Jomo Pitterson. Along with Pitterson and FM Elliott was 10-time women’s champion Deborah Richards-Porter. It seemed just a short time ago that Pitterson, Elliott, Richards-Porter were fighting off the youngsters for national honors. Now they are grooming them for the future.

Photos by Daaim Shabazz/The Chess Drum

Chess Can Make Dreams Come True


Brazil’s Regina Riberio was also head of the delegation of 10 players. The eight-time Brazilian champion is the veteran of 10 Olympiad tournaments (beginning in 1982) and now she is teaching her students how to make that jump. She told The Chess Drum she has taught chess at the same school for 34 years.

Daaim Shabazz (USA), WIM Regina Riberio (Brazil), IM Jomo Pitterson (Jamaica)
Photo by Daaim Shabazz

Results & Standings:
Gallery 1:
Gallery 2:

Gallery 3:
Interview with FM Warren Elliott (Jamaica)

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