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Old March 13th 05, 01:31 AM
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Old March 13th 05, 12:35 PM
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News from THE WALLACE GROUP
P.O. Box 21303, Eagan, MN 55121
3750 Pilot Knob Road, Eagan, MN 55122
(651) 452-9800 (651) 452-3504 fax
For further information, contact:
Roy Wallace, The Wallace Group, 651-452-9800
Brian Molohon, HB Foundation, 651-209-3067 HB Global Chess Challenge
Hold for release 9/17, 3:30 p.m.

WORLD'S LARGEST OPEN CHESS TOURNAMENT EVER PLANNED FOR MINNEAPOLIS IN
MAY 2005; WITH TOP PLAYERS PARTICIPATING

More than 4,000 players from around the world expected to participate
in the
HB Global Chess Challenge, with its $500,000 prize fund


A new international chess tournament has been announced for May 2005 in
Minneapolis that will attract more players and have larger cash prizes
than any open chess competition ever held. Called the HB Global Chess
Challenge, the event is expected to set new standards for the world of
chess in player satisfaction and being "fan friendly," while the
winners will receive cash prizes that more than double any previously
awarded in open competitions.

Endorsed by the U.S. Chess Federation and the Association of Chess
Professionals, the HB Global Chess Challenge is sponsored by the
nonprofit HB Foundation, which focuses on bringing the benefits of
chess to children in the schools and through community programs.
Organizing the major event is Maurice Ashley, the first and only
African American Grandmaster and the head of Generation Chess.

"An event like the HB Global Chess Challenge has been the dream of
players for years, a tournament that will offer very substantial cash
prizes and be 'fan friendly' for both the professional and amateur,"
said Ashley.

The executive director of the Minnesota-based HB Foundation, Brian
Molohon, said the $500,000 prize fund for the tournament has already
been guaranteed and is not dependent on revenues from registrations.

"We are proud to be making chess history and most pleased that we will
be helping to build awareness of how children benefit from chess," said
Molohon, as plans were disclosed in a news conference at the Mall of
America. "We believe our role in staging this historic event will help
provide a platform for promoting the cognitive and academic benefits
that children and youth gain from learning and playing chess."

Joining in the announcement was Randy Bauer, a member of the U.S. Chess
Federation (USCF) executive board and budget director for the State of
Iowa. "The federation is really excited about this event. It certainly
will attract new interest in the game," he said. Welcoming the
foundation's interest in carrying the message to youth, Bauer said he
"certainly can attest to how these opportunities are helpful to kids in
school and something they can be involved in all their lives."

Beatriz Marinello, president of the USCF, has said, "This tournament is
a fantastic idea. This is a very, very positive and encouraging
initiative that could do a lot for chess in the U.S."

The tournament, to be held at the Minneapolis Convention Center, is
expected to draw thousands of competitors from around the world,
shattering all previous records for participation in a chess
tournament. Grandmaster Ashley calls the HB tourney "a massive step
forward for chess," explaining that more than 300 players will receive
cash prizes for their winning performances.

The HB Global Chess Challenge will have multiple side events, including
a children's chess competition on the Saturday of tournament week. In
addition, this historic chess event will include lectures, simultaneous
exhibitions, autograph signings by leading grandmasters, live game
analysis of the top boards, musical entertainment, silent and live
auctions, drawings, and gift memberships in the U.S. Chess Federation.
In addition, there will be a chess competition for children on the
Saturday of tournament week.

"The whole world of chess needs to get behind this effort," says
Ashley, who will be providing some ESPN-style commentary at the event.
"The HB tournament gives us all a chance to come together and play the
game we love in a way that respects all chess players, and it will help
kids. How can you beat that?"

The entire Twin Cities area is prepared to welcome the visiting chess
competitors, and the array of restaurants, sporting events, theaters,
music venues and shops are sure to please, said Molohon, adding that
visits to the Mall of America, the nation's largest shopping center,
are also planned.

"The entire area will be ready to welcome our visiting chess players,
throwing the doors wide open to welcome the participants and their
families." said Molohon.

In urging wide participation in the HB Global Chess Challenge, Ashley
says "there will never again be another first. This is the tournament
that you will be telling your grandkids about."
# # #


For more information, visit www.hbfoundation.org
www.generationchess.com

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