Are you looking to join a chess club in Canada? Clubs are excellent for meeting other competitive players or learning the ropes of playing chess. While finding the right club can be tricky when so many options exist, the chess clubs listed below are some of Canada’s finest. We’ve also included a few tips on choosing the right club, so let’s get started!
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The Best Chess Clubs in Canada
Canada might be known for ice hockey, but there’s a fair bit of love for chess, too. Its numerous chess clubs are a testament to that. In fact, the Chess Federation of Canada lists over 100 official clubs, and there are at least as many unofficial clubs nationwide. In other words, you can easily find a club whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro!
Which are the top clubs to consider joining?
1. Edmonton Chess Club (Edmonton, Alberta)
Edmonton’s official and only chess club started in 1908 and has plenty of history to share with its newest members. You can feel the passion for chess in this club. The community is active, welcoming players into chess nights four days a week. They also run official and unofficial tournaments that cater for both beginner and veteran players.
2. Langley Chess Club (Langley, BC)
If you’re searching for a more casual club, look no further than the Langley Chess Club. This friendly club meets every week for light-hearted games of chess. Anyone is free to join these casual meetings without becoming an official member, though membership will give you extra perks such as tournament discounts. It’s also a great way to support this long-running club.
3. Mississauga Chess Club (Mississauga, Ontario)
Mississauga Chess Club likes to boast it is Canada’s biggest chess club. This claim has merit, considering the club’s ranks have players of all age groups split into separate youth and adult clubs. As you can expect from such a big club, weekly and monthly events are on the roster, as are regular tournaments in all skill brackets. If you need coaching, the club offers lessons from its more experienced members.
4. The Hart House Chess Club (Toronto, Ontario)
The University of Toronto is home to a chess club that’s been going strong for nearly 130 years. Although the Hart House Chess Club is a university club, you don’t have to be a student to join. The doors are open to alums and community members alike. It’s an active club with weekly get-togethers and regular events, such as game nights. It also hosts lectures and chess exhibitions around the country.
5. Lakeshore Chess Club (Dorval, Montreal)
Montreal’s first chess club is still running in Dorval, where it has settled after moving around different locations in the West Island. Lakeshore Chess Club hosts seasonal tournaments, blitz tournaments and an annual championship. You can participate in several weekly events as a player or spectator. The club welcomes children and adults, with lessons available for those just starting. They also run a wonderful initiative that mixes and matches players from different socioeconomic backgrounds. The club offers excellent opportunities to meet new people over a shared love of chess.
Should You Join a Chess Club?
Yes! There are many benefits to joining a chess club. Clubs can help you:
These days, many clubs have a digital presence as well. Just as you can find many card-game sites with a variety of live tables, so can you play chess online! Digital clubs and communities exist whether you’re into poker, chess or baccarat. Many of the clubs mentioned above occasionally run online-only tournaments as well.
If you’re shy about joining a club, consider going online first. However, it’s a good idea to check out a club event in person, as doing so will help you determine if the club’s environment is right for you.
Choosing the Right Chess Club
Whatever your playing level, you’ll want a club that fits your needs. While the above clubs are among the best, they are not the only Canadian chess clubs. You can always check online for local clubs in your area or contact the Canadian Chess Federation.
When you’re choosing a club, these are some key things to keep in mind:
Your answers to the questions above should help you figure out what you want from a club and what it can offer you. And don’t hesitate to contact a club directly. Most will welcome you to come by and see what the club is like before you decide to join!
The Bottom Line
Chess clubs are a fantastic way to meet like-minded players. You can improve your skills and share your passion for this classic game. Canada has countless great clubs that offer something for everyone, so pick a club and start playing!