Capital City Open V (Tallahassee, Florida)

Florida’s Capital City is warming up, and chess is in full bloom. Over the past two years, Jacob Sperber has organized five rapid tournaments in the Tallahassee area. His initiative has rejuvenated chess in Florida’s capital and has provided some consistency. The most recent event was held at the Benjamin L. Perry Public Library on Adams Street and attracted 24 players.

Photos by Daaim Shabazz

Richard Kennedy is more interested in his students’ success than his own, yet he continues to win local tournaments, notching his second victory in the series. Actually, Kennedy shared joint-second with Dylan Truver, who also had 3/3. For the under-1000, Elise Buck and Nathan Heburn claimed top prizes with perfect scores. The proceeds were donated to the Eastern Indigo Snake Conservation Program. A wide variety of players and onlookers came out to support the event.

While there are a number of strong players in the area, many have not found the time to play in the events—at least not recently. Fifth-grade Florida champion Vivan Mulay did not play, but he is one to watch in future Tallahassee events. Despite the recent success and Jacob’s efforts, there is still a lack of organizational structure that would allow for more frequent club and tournament activities. Hopefully, that will change in the future.

Nevertheless, a number of area students from FAMU, FSU, and Rickards came to play. Lauren Holloway, a freshman at Rickards H.S., played in her first tournament. Organizer Jacob has been an inspiration and is President of the Chess Club at Rickards. Chess also brought chess siblings out as Alela and Auden were there with their father, Mark Musselman, while Yohan and Iniya Esakkimuthu were also participating. There is a market for chess in Tallahassee, and we may be in for a significant shift in activity. Stay tuned for future developments!

Photos by Claudia Sperber

Capital City Open V (Standings)

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