Greater Peoria Chess Foundation

The Greater Peoria Chess Foundation is a 501(c)3 non profit organization dedicated to encouraging chess in our community and school systems. Chess helps students to develop many life skills that will help them as they navigate with challenges that lay ahead.


The St Mary's January 19th tournament
has been canceled due to weather.

Leali wins the 2018 Peoria Championship Finals 2-1 !!

Qualifiers - Standings - Games

Mike Leali wins the 2018 Peoria Championship after Alex Beecher missed a cunning trap in the third game of the match. After the first two games of the match, the score was tied at 1-1, with both Mike Leali & Alex Beecher winning with Black. Mike broke the Black curse by scoring the first playoff White win is several years. For Mike this was his 8th Peoria Championship win, more than any other player since it's revival in 1997.

After the two 6-man round robin semi-finals, NM Pete Karagianis & Alex Beecher, winner of the Bradley Summer Open, had qualified to meet in the final match to determine this year's champion. Pete was unable to play the final match and so Mike Leali, second place behind Karagianis in section A, took his place for the finals match.

The Monday night adult chess club now meets at the Life Together Center (formerly the Great Central Insurance Bldg) at Sheridan & War Memorial 7 to 11pm. (Click here to see the location on a map.)

Major Changes in IHSA Chess Rules

Major changes are underway for the 2019 IHSA State Championships to be held at the Peoria Civic Center, February 8-9, 2019. The IHSA Rules committee has voted to eliminate individual board medals and require schools to play their boards in the pre-tournament order by playing strength.

It allows teams to substitute players much more easily from round to round. In the previous system in effect last year, a player can play on only one board. If a substitute appeared on Board 8, he or she cannot subsequently be subbed in on Board 7 if needed.

In the new system, affective this year, players would always play in order of strength, but not necessarily on the same board. The change allows better flexibility for the teams but it does eliminate the individual awards.

In lieu of individual awards, the Committee recommended that, if individual awards are eliminated, the names of players and coaches of all teams finished with six points be announced during the awards ceremony. Our question is that if we can recognize the high achievers by calling out their names, why can't we also provide an appropriate medal as a permanent memento?

The rule changes would also affect the schools at the Peoria CICLW sectional.

GPCF Receives PPS Community Contribution Award
PPS Community Contribution Crystal Award

Peoria Public Schools awarded the 2017-18 Community Contribution Award to the Greater Peoria Chess Foundation at their June 11, 2018 Board meeting. GPCF provided chess sets and training software to PPS schools and supported a chess tournament at Von Steuben Middle School in 2017. Planned for 2018-19 are more tournaments and a program to provide low cost US Chess memberships to students.

Pete Karagianis Named US Chess Assistant Director of Events

Peoria's own Pete Karagianis has been named US Chess Assistant Director of Events.

"Pete’s calm demeanor, high energy and capable articulation will be valuable assets. He looks forward to sharing his vision of a quality event – a vision born from both his passion for the game and his wealth of experience within US Chess. We are happy to have him as part of our team." - US Chess.

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