Waterville Chess Club

Waterville, Maine

A REM Community Initiative


Next scheduled online meeting: to be announced (we typically use the Camden Chess Club community team at lichess.org); Online meetings available by request only. Get in touch if you want to schedule an online game!

Next scheduled in-person meetings: - Last Minute Change of Venue for Tuesday the 26th!

  • Monday October 25th, 2021. We will be meeting on Monday afternoon at the Dunkin' in Oakland [848 Kennedy Memorial Drive, Oakland, Maine] at 1 pm;
  • Tuesday October 26th, 2021. We will be meeting on Tuesday night at Five Guys in Waterville [373 Main St., Waterville, Maine] at 5:00 pm;
  • (details are in the weekly email). Give me a call or send me an email to confirm if you can.
Note: I send an email to our regular mailing list shortly before the day of the meetings with information about where and how we will meet. Governor Mills ended the State of Civil Emergency on June 30th; accordingly, we began to play in person again (cautiously and with masks in the presence of unvaccinated players and younger players). For now we are limiting the length of the meetings to just under 3 hours. We are keeping an eye on the latest news about the Delta variant and 'breakthrough' cases in Maine. Let us know about your comfort level to help us decide what is best for the club.

We had been meeting every Monday night (since November 11th, 2019) at 31 Temple Street, Waterville (the REM Center, across the street from the Lebanese Cuisine restaurant) from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Until the COVID-19 crisis. Be advised that the club is still officially hunkering down. We had been playing online from 6 pm to 8 pm (with an optional Zoom session to facilitate communication among the players). Conditions improved significantly at the beginning of summer (partly due to the good vaccination rate in Maine). As a result, we started meeting in person again in Pittsfield or Oakland or Waterville (but when and where to hold the meetings varies from week to week, so be sure to consult the latest email for specifics); we have no plans to start meeting again at the Waterville REM space at this time.

Black to Move Chess Diagram
In a recent Queen's Pawn Opening Accelerated London System game played online, Travis played Black against Don. White really messed up in this position! When will I ever learn not to throw away my Queen? Full game on the Featured page.

EXTRA! A St. Louis Chess Club video by NM Jim McLaughlin, more videos by NM Nelson Lopez [Chess Vibes] and a few newcomers on the Info tab. If you are looking for advice on the basics, want to improve your game, or just want to enjoy watching some exciting and instructive chess games, take a look. Each presenter has a unique style; find the one you like best. I particularly enjoy the videos with advice about blundering less! Warning: it takes a while (and lots of practice) before the advice works. If you have a favorite video personality, let us know.

Reminder! Included here under the "Featured", "Recent", and "Archive", tabs are just a few of our own games from the club; more to come in the future (games with Anna, Arnold, Glenn, Isaac, Kevin, Ray, Ben, Steve, Evan, John, Johnny and John 2, Mark, Bob and Pete - victories and losses). Eventually I hope to index the games by Chess Opening and by Opponent [which will make it easier to find what we are looking for when we want to research past games].

Online Chess

We have been meeting online since March 30th of 2020. Evan Annis (Camden Chess Club) has set up his club online at lichess.org; I set up a team on chess.com for those who cannot play on Lichess. For the time being, we encourage you to join either the Camden Online Chess Club [if you are more comfortable with the lichess.org user interface] or the Waterville Online Chess Club [if you are more comfortable with the chess.com user interface] (or both). Feel free to join us on lichess.org at the "Camden Chess Club" Community Chess Team [Evan has graciously invited us to share his online space]. We send out an email invitation to meet online (optionally using Zoom, which allows us to talk to each other while we play). If you are on our mailing list, a link to join the online club meetings will be sent in the club email. Note: We plan to continue sending out a weekly email announcing our plans to play either online or in person, depending on availability of a location to play in person. If you need help joining either online club (or if you have questions about our plans), just drop us an email. We are actively exploring the possibility of having a tournament with the Camden Chess Club on lichess.org at some point; for now, just contact Evan to join our Friday Rapid Arena mini non-rated tournaments.

Camden Chess Club Online Waterville Chess Club Online

In Person Chess

Several members of the Waterville Chess Club expressed a desire to get back to playing over the board in-person chess games. New reported cases of COVID-19 had diminished recently to the point that we felt it was safe to play in person in small groups (and especially if you are vaccinated). We will try to have weekly club meetings in person in the greater Waterville area, but schedule online meetings whenever in-person meetings are not possible. Click on the map below for a Bangor Daily News article updated daily with the latest statistics. The trend is not good, so I might have to return to online meetings at some point. Each one of us will need to decide whether they are comfortable playing in person. If you wish to return to playing online games, speak up.
COVID-19 Cases in Maine per 10K Residents

We also occasionally play informally at these locations by appointment during the day or in the early evening (check websites for details): MOST ARE NOW OPEN (SOME WITH RESTRICTIONS: FACE MASKS, SOCIAL DISTANCING)

Chess and Coffee at the Warehouse

I have a list of club members who wish to arrange to play in-person games outside of our regular meetings. If you want to be on that list, provide me with your phone number and optionally, a list of days you are available to play; I will provide your contact information to those who wish to play live games. Reminder: Our rule at the club is to keep email addresses and phone numbers confidential unless you give me permission to share that with other members.

Once you are added to the list, I will send the updated list to all participants. It will then be up to you to make arrangements with the other players directly. You are welcome to do any combination of the options suggested above (or you can suggest new opportunities for us to consider).

We don't record all our games, but we encourage recording games and playing with a chess clock [which is not required for casual games]. We welcome players of all strengths. Currently we have several chessboards, but feel free to bring your own chessboard, pieces and chess clock if you have them [we are very short on chess clocks at the moment].

Where to find resources about chess?

Maybe a better question would be "Is there any place that I cannot find resources about chess?" The short answer is: Google is your friend. Our site has links to various chess sites: (if you want to play chess on the internet, click on the Chess Sites menu above), the Maine Chess Association (MECA), the U.S. Chess Federation (USCF), and International Chess Federation (FIDE), all accessible from the menus at the top of this web site.

More recently, many people are taking advantage of YouTube for videos about famous games, and tutorials about various aspects of the game. The Info tab on this web site has a selection of links to various informational videos and tutorials about chess. Finally, we have our own library of books donated by members (some of which are even for sale) on the Library tab.

If you are looking for a good reason to play more chess, check out what Ben Franklin had to say about chess!

Becoming a Waterville Chess Club member is easy: just ask! Contact: Don Smallidge.