I was there - National Elementary Phoenix

I have been reading with utter fascination, the battle letters of USCF which have been forwarded to me by chess mom Kelly Jacobs. How she gets them, we both don't know, but it really gives me some insight into our USCF and in how so many others besides Mississippi are also entangled in their own chess organizations' failings.

When I read the information about the Nat'l Elem. tournament in Phoenix, I pondered the accusations because I was there. I then read Mr. Peterson's response, and I must say, while I agree with so much Mr. Sloan has to say about USCF and Mr. Dorsch, I think the Phoenix accusations are totally overblown.

1) I can't say much about who made checks out to Peterson, but we sent our registration in early with our checks made to USCF.

2) Many of us were grateful for the burgers on the terrace. The trip cost our financially-challenged school a fortune, and the kids had a very limited food budget. Many of the parents ate there too, and they said the food was great. No one in our group got sick, and they ate several times there.

3) In the coaches meeting, which was sparsely attended, we were told that the convention people were going to charge some huge fee per gallon to place water on the playing floor. The situation was remedied by having plenty of drinking cups placed next to the chilled water drinking fountains. At the other places we have attended, which is several national events, the only difference is that they offered ice with the water. Phoenix is a desert, and ice and water by the gallons is a luxury. I don't believe anyone suffered because they had to fill their own cup without ice.

4) USCF had a store there, where I spent a lot of money, as I always do, but the t-shirts they sold were not in conflict with the Phoenix shirt.

Do let me say this: The tournament was very nice, and the trophies were the best I've seen yet. Once we got the tournament hall A opened for the skittles/waiting area, there was nothing to complain about. I wasn't much in favor of going out to the tents to wait, because it was warm out there, but in Hall A we had a wonderful place to wait and hang out--better than I have seen at any scholastic event yet. I like things very organized, and if you let me, I could fine tune these events to perfection, in much the way we run our "melon" tournaments here. But while I plan for close to 100 at our events, not 2000, I think the planning was well thought out, especially the bus system which saved us so much money in transportation. Whoever is complaining must have a personal grudge. I have yet to attend the perfect tournament. I have been to some that were horrible. Some are embarrassing. This was a fun event with the children in mind. That's more than I can say for many of the other children's chess events I have seen.

En passant,

Liz Reynolds


The Reynolds' Residence 15 CR 429 Water Valley, MS 38965-4875 (662) 473-2571 & 2580

What does the Lord require of you, but to do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God? Micah 6:8

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