I authored the following tournament report from the Continental Open in Sturbridge, which was published at Chess Life Online.
The 38th Continental Open run by Bill Goichberg’s Continental Chess Association (CCA) is a much travelled event although it seems to have found itself a permanent home in the quaint rural town of Sturbridge, Massachusetts, where it has been for the past 5 years.
Sturbridge is firmly on the CCA chess tournament map as it is also the permanent home of the Eastern Class Championships run by them every March. A popular summer vacation spot, it is home to the Old Sturbridge Village, a living museum that recreates life in rural New England from the early 19th century.
The Sturbridge Host Hotel is a comfortable setting, which not only has the usual hotel amenities such as a heated pool and gym but also offers a private beach on the lake front and a mini golf course on the premises. It is also very popular with groups and functions, as all the players found out on Saturday evening when they hosted a wedding, complete with extremely loud music, in a nearby function room. Thankfully the distance to the playing hall was far enough away that it didn’t interfere with the chess but ear plugs were necessary to go and check out the equipment and book store provided by Rochester Chess. It also led to various inquisitive visitors taking time out of their respective parties to come and see whether their stereotypical vision of a roomful of chessplayers was accurate.