Cincinnati Scholastic Chess

Inviting you to enjoy the king of games in the Queen City

Other Opportunities for Enjoying Chess

Summer Chess Camps

Listed below are some camps about which we have some information, but in most cases our information is incomplete. We will update this page as information becomes available to us.

Chess Plus Summer Camps

Positive Chess is conducting a series of six all-day, week-long camps in June and July, to be held at the Bethany School, 555 Albion Avenue in Glendale. Each camp spends the morning on chess and the afternoon on a variety of  non-chess-related but fun activities. This camp is open to all interested players regardless of residency. Visit for details.

Seven Hills Summer Camps, including Chess Camp

A chess camp will be held at Seven Hills School (Lotspeich Building) during the week of July 1. This four-day camp will meet on Monday, July 1 through Wednesday, July 3 and on Friday, July 5. There will be no camp on Thursday, July 4th. This camp is from 9:00 am until noon and is open to all interested players regardless of residency. Campers will be divided into two, or possible three, groups by ability level so that appropriate instruction can be provided to each group. Beginners and veteran players are welcome. For details, see the Seven Hills 2019 Summer Program brochure.

Columbus Chess Academy Chess Camp

Columbus Chess Academy is partnering with the African American and African Studies Community Extension Center at The Ohio State University this summer. The camp will be at their location, 905 Mt. Vernon Ave, Columbus, OH 43203 from July 22 to July 26, 1–5 pm.

WHO: Participants: Students who are entering 2nd – 7th grade next school year. Counselors: Adults and 8th – 12th grade students who are experienced in chess.

COST: $10 per participant.


  • Download and fill out the waiver form. Send completed form by email or post.
    Mail: Columbus Chess Academy c/o Kathy Lin, 654 Binns Blvd, Columbus, OH 43204
  • Wait for acceptance notification. We have limited capacity for the summer camp, so we will accept applicants on a first-come-first-served basis, with half of the seats reserved for students who attend Columbus City Schools or charter schools.
  • Make payment. The acceptance notification will contain instructions on how to complete payment.

Send any questions to

Mason Chess Fest

The 2019 Mason Chess Fest has been set for August 5 through 8, 2019 (Monday through Thursday) at the Heritage Presbyterian Church in Mason (on the corner of Mason-Montgomery Road and Tylersville Road, across Tylersville Road from Mason Junior High School). This camp will be from 9:00 am until noon and is open to all interested players regardless of residency. Classes will be offered at these levels:

  • Beginner 1 (1 class)
  • Beginner 2 (1 or 2 classes*)
  • Intermediate (2 or 3 classes*)
  • Advanced (1 or 2 classes*)
  • *We have built in the flexibility to add a class at these levels depending on how many campers we get at each level. We are committed to limiting classes to either 16 or 12 participants.

While the Chess Fest welcomes players who are new to the game or relatively inexperienced into its Beginner level classes, its Intermediate and Advanced classes are designed for players who are seriously looking to improve their game and interested in playing competitive tournament chess. Our intention in the upper classes is to offer a depth and breadth of instruction that is not commonly available in other camps. Accordingly our emphasis will be more on teaching and less on recreational play, and campers should come prepared and willing to work. Nevertheless, some time will be reserved each day for play so that campers can immediately apply their new knowledge — and, of course, there is a tournament on the last day of camp with each level being its own section.  For details, including class descriptions and rating guidelines, click here for a flyer. Click here for online entry. Click here for a mail-in entry form.

State Chess Championship Tournaments (scholastic)

The Ohio Scholastic Chess Association oversees five championship tournaments every year, two of which (the Middle School Championships and the High School Championship) are played concurrently at the same site. Typically these four events are played at different sites in Ohio from year to year.

Girls Championship

Only girls may play in the Girls Championship tournament, which is normally played between late February and early May. The Championship section (K-12 Open) plays a two-day schedule, two rounds on Saturday and two on Sunday, with a time control of G/90; +30. Non-championship sections play a one-day schedule on Saturday with a time control of G/30; d5. The 2019 Ohio Girls Championship was played in Cincinnati on February 23 and 24, 2019. Click here for crosstables (showing results, including team results, in tiebreak order) or Event Summary (not in tiebreak order but showing new ratings).

Elementary Championships

The Elementary Championships include an Elementary Championship for grades K through 6 and a Primary Championship for grade K through 3. The event is a 5-round, 1-day tournament, normally played between late February and early May with a time control of G/30; d5. Sections include a Primary Championship (K-3), an Elementary Championship (K-6), and non-championship sections as determined by the organizer. The 2019 Elementary Championships tournament was played on March 30 in Solon, OH. Click here for results.

High School and Middle School Championships

These two events are usually conducted together as a single tournament, known in shorthand as the “HSMS” and usually played in March or April, with the High School Championship open to players in grades 9 through 12 and the  Middle School Championship open to players in grades K through 8. The tournament is a 6-round, 2-day tournament with a time control for the High School and Middle Schools Championship sections of G/60; d5 for rounds 1-3 and G/90; d5 for rounds 4-6. Non-championship sections for grades K through 8 and for grades 9 through 12 are typically offered as well, with a time control of G/60; d5 for all rounds. The 2019 HSMS Championships tournament was played on April 6-7 in Mayfield Heights (Cleveland), OH. Click here for results.

Grade Level Championships

The Grade Level Championships event is a 5-round, 1-day tournament, played on the Saturday before Thanksgiving, with each grade (K through 12) as a distinct section (all players must play in the section for their grade). The time control for grades K through 6 is G/30; d5 for all rounds. The time control for grades 7 through 12 is G/45; d5 for all rounds. The 2019 Grade Level Championships will be played on Saturday, November 9, 2019 (Veterans Day weekend), at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Blue Ash, OH. See the Grade Level page for details.

For more information about these tournaments, visit the Ohio Scholastic Chess Association website.

Open Chess at the Library (non-rated recreational play, all ages)

The Symmes Township branch of the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County offers a program of open play on every Tuesday except for the last Tuesday of the month. Play is from 6:30 until 8:30 pm. The Symmes library is located on Enyart Road just off Montgomery Road. Originated by one of the CSC founders in January 2006, this program has continuously offered the opportunity for people of any age to drop in whenever they want to play games recreationally, get some coaching from more experienced players, or learn the game from scratch in an informal and unstructured setting.

Cincinnati Chess Club (rated play, all ages)

The Cincinnati Chess Club meets regularly on Thursday nights at the Deer Park Community Center, aka Francis R Healey Community Center (Chamberlin Park), 7640 Plainfield Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45236 from 6:30 until 11:00 pm. Players of all ages and skill levels are welcome. Grand Prix Quick Chess tournament on the first Thursday of each month. Four rounds at G/20; d5. Round 1 begins at 7:00 pm. $20 entry fee. See the Cincinnati Chess Club website for complete information.

The Cincinnati Tornado Returns

The Cincinnati Chess Club has brought back the popular Cincinnati Tornado tournament. This is a one-day, four-round tournament with a time control of G/60;d5 in two sections: Open and U1600. The first two tournaments in this revived series were played on Saturday, March 23 and Saturday, May 18. The organizers intend to have a Tornado approximately every two months. We will post updated information here as we receive it.

Clermont County Chess Club (rated play, all ages)

The Clermont County Chess Club meets regularly on Tuesday nights in Withamsville beginning at 6:00. Players of all ages and skill levels are welcome. See the Clermont County Chess Club website for complete information.

Dayton Chess Club (rated play, all ages)

The Dayton Chess Club (18 West 5th Street, Dayton) hosts play on most Thursday and Friday nights (whenever it isn’t preempted by a major tournament) and typically offers a Pawn Storm tournament on one Saturday each month when there isn’t any other tournament scheduled at the club for that month. See the Dayton Chess Club website for complete information.

Chess Activity in Other Places

Our site is not an official clearinghouse of chess-related information; we provide information only about events that come to our attention. Listed to the left are a number of links to other websites that might be of interest. By exploring these you might find other opportunities to play or study chess, in the Cincinnati area or elsewhere in and around Ohio.

Looking for lessons?

As a service to the community chess players of all ages, Cincinnati Scholastic Chess seeks to connect players at all levels who are seeking individual instruction with suitable teachers/coaches by listing on this page contact information for those chess teachers and coaches who have elected to make their information available through this medium. The presence of a teacher or coach on this page does not indicate an endorsement or recommendation of that teacher or coach by Cincinnati Scholastic Chess.

Jon Applebee, veteran teacher and coach of numerous school chess programs and summer camps, open to teaching individuals as well as small groups. $40/hour for individual lessons; rate negotiable for small groups.

Blake Baumgartner, USCF Expert, 2013 Ohio High School Champion, peak rating: 2196 USCF. 6+ years’ experience coaching children and adults, ranging from complete beginners to 1800 USCF. An experienced chess player and chess coach, I always aims to assess my students’ strengths and weaknesses and guide them along on their path to improvement to maximize their chess potential. $35/hour for in-person private lesson at my house or for Internet lessons; $35/hour + added travel fee for private lessons at your house (depends on distance).

Carl Boor, National Master/FIDE Master. I am a full-time chess coach who works to serve my students in the most flexible and efficient manner possible.  Please visit:

Noah Keating-Adams, USCF National Master, can coach anyone from beginner to 1800. Resides in West Chester/Liberty Twp. area, but is willing to drive a reasonable distance. $35 per one-hour lesson.