Numerous research studies indicate that chess can help children develop problem solving and decision making skills essential for excelling in mathematics, science, reading and other logic based learning. Some states — New Jersey for instance — consider it so important that it has been written into school curriculum.

For the children who play chess, it’s really just a game. Fun, challenging, creative: but still a game, not much different from tennis, cricket, football or golf. The games will begin in Conway on March 15. St. Joseph Catholic School Chess Club will host the Seventh Annual Bob Nabholz Memorial Southern Scholastic Open Chess Tournament.

Registration is currently underway for the tournament, which will begin in the St. Joseph Parish Hall at 10 a.m., with registration at 9:00 a.m. Any child in grades kindergarten through 12th can participate. Both United States Chess Federation Rated and Non-Rated Sections are available for individual players. Teams must play in a USCF-Rated Section. This is a non-elimination tournament with each child playing at least five games.

A trophy or medal and a chess prize will be awarded to each player. Early registration is $20 per player and $25 after March 12 with a reduced rate of $10 for children participating in their school’s free lunch programs. Participants should bring boards, sets & clocks, if possible. Sets will be available for purchase on site from Cajun Chess. To register online or for more information, visit or call 501-327-1204.