Annex Chess Club

Latest News Posts

Special Events

Weekly Tournament
  • November 06, 2023 7:30 PM
    918 Bathurst Street, Toronto ON M5R 3G5

Follow Us

Log in


Chess For Everyone!

News (post)

<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   Next >  Last >> 
  • March 28, 2023 4:33 PM | George Supol

    IM Mark Plotkin starts his 8-week online "Positional Chess" course, tonight at 7:00 PM (Tuesday, March 28).

    Registration is now open and 20% discounts are available to all ACC members. Additional discounts are available to both ACC members and non-members if students purchase 4 or 8-week class bundles, instead of a single drop-in class.

    Classes are 1.5 hrs. in length.

    Here is a link to Mark's recent chess instruction video he did for Annex Chess Club. Viewing this video will show you just how good Mark is as a chess teacher.

    Be there tonight, or be the chessboard square!

  • March 19, 2023 2:29 PM | George Supol

    IM Mark Plotkin will be giving a free one-hour online class via Zoom to both intermediate and advanced students. The class will run from 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM. this Tuesday, March 21.

    In this class, Mark will introduce the concepts of calculation in chess and also candidates moves. He will also share his views on chess improvement drawing from his own experiences. This material is aimed at those players (adults and kids) who are already playing in rated tournaments but wish to improve their chess results.

    Don't miss this free demonstration class of Mark's knowledge and teaching skills, especially if you want to improve your knowledge about these two technical topics.

    IM Mark Plotkin

    You can register for free here, after which you will immediately receive the Zoom link via email.

  • March 15, 2023 2:35 AM | George Supol

    Annex Chess Club is pleased to launch its new website as of March 15, 2023.

    You'll notice a new refreshed logo, designed and gifted to ACC for its website go-live by Jeff Kumagai of Oddball Creative Services in BC. It's still to be approved by ACC's Board, so it could be tweaked or even replaced. Once again, the focus is on the Knight. It's such a unique and interesting piece in the game of chess. Our motto is still Chess for Everyone! and it's part of our logo and branding. We've kept our old logo in some of our webpage footers, as a reminder of the Club's origins in 2010.  The original ACC logo was designed by the talented cartographer/graphic designer, Bettina Kuypers (dec.).

    Our new website is designed to have the look and feel of a newspaper. Visitors to the site can skim the material presented, learn a lot about the Club very quickly, and over time visit on those sections that appeal most to them. Our old website was focused on what's new at the Club, but now we've decided to display more useful and interesting content to those people who are either coming back to chess after a long absence, or are completely new to the game. It's also important to know what's not new at the Club. Depending on where people are in their chess journey, their interests may be weighted differently—a relative mix of classes (learning), low-stress chess (casual play) and competitive chess (tournament play and special events). So we are now presenting a balanced perspective for all types of players.

    Besides the new website, we've also added new integrated, online registration systems for memberships (JOIN US), weekly tournaments, classes and special events. We hope these serve our members and other customers well.  We think it's pretty cool that our new website and systems were essentially completed within a span of less than three months! We've also added an Online Store which we hope to develop more over time. We're sorry to see our old Wordpress site go—it served us well for a long time. But ACC continues to evolve and as they say, "the only thing that's constant is change itself." 

    At Annex Chess Club, a non-profit organization, we're really proud of our People and Governance and that means everyone involved in helping move the Club forward to the next level, in its ongoing story. We have a wise and experienced Board (all chess players who come and play most weeks), talented and passionate instructors, and some exciting player-members that hang out at our 918 Bathurst Centre home every Monday evening. There's also a regular group of ACC players who go out for a frosty beverage at a local pub (El FurnitureInsomnia or Paupers) after we tear down the Club each Monday, around midnight.

    We're proud of our legacy especially Ted Winick, our founder, who used to personally greet Club members and parents as they came through the doors most Monday nights. Ted really embodied the Club's spirit and promoted a sense of belonging to "the ACC community." More than anything, 918 Bathurst is meant to be an emotionally safe space where everyone is treated with proper respect and can enjoy playing and learning more about chess. Our primary goal is that our Members and visitors to the Club have a joyful chess experience every Monday night.

  • March 10, 2023 12:10 AM | George Supol

    The Toronto Closed Chess Championship starts on Monday, April 17, 2023 and runs for 10 Monday evenings at Annex Chess Club. This is a 9-round, Round Robin tournament with a 90 minute + 30 second increment time control for each game. One extra night (the ninth) is used for a makeup game.

    Last year (2022), there were 4 sections of 10 players each. They were as follows—Championship (#1-10), Reserve (#11-20), Development (#21-30) and Annex (#31-40). This year, the number of sections in use, will depend on how many players sign up. Spots are assigned to players in their relative order of CFC regular rating.

    The tournament has a storied past as many of the GTA's top players have competed in this championship. Below is a pic from the 1967 Toronto Championship, a precursor event.

    Winners of the Toronto Closed, Championship Section, since 2000 are listed below. Asterisks indicate those events that were held at ACC.

    • 2022 Roman Gavrilin *
    • 2019 David Cummings
    • 2018 Michael Barron *
    • 2017 Mike Ivanov *
    • 2016 Mike Ivanov *
    • 2015 Geordie Derraugh *
    • 2014 Victor Plotkin *
    • 2013 Michael Song *
    • 2012 Michael Kleinman, Victor Plotkin *
    • 2011 Victor Plotkin
    • 2010 Victor Plotkin
    • 2009 Michael Barron
    • 2008 Nikolay Noritsyn
    • 2007 Michael Barron
    • 2006 Leonid Gerzhoy
    • 2005 Sami Ademi
    • 2004 Tomas Krnan, Yaaqov Vaingorten
    • 2003 Goran Prpic
    • 2002 Isai Berengolts
    • 2001 Brett Campbell
    • 2000 Eduardo Teodoro IV

    Before Annex, GTCL President Michael Barron organized the closed at the Willowdale Chess Club. In the current era, the two most regular players, Victor Plotkin has won four and Michael Barron has won three. Plotkin won strong tournaments with average ratings of 2316, 2318 and 2329 (in 2014). Mike Ivanov has also won twice.

    Additional details about prior years’ Toronto Closed events, both Championship and Reserve Sections, may be found on the CFC website here.

    Pre-registration for the 2023 Toronto Closed starts on Thursday, March 16 and ends on Friday, April 7 at 6:00 PM. Players who have secured a spot through pre-registration will then have until Wednesday, April 13 at 6:00 PM to  complete their final registrations and pay their fees to ACC. Players will be able to follow pre-registrations and final registrations here.

  • March 03, 2023 8:28 AM | George Supol


    IM Mark Plotkin

    Annex Chess Club is pleased to announce that Mark Plotkin, International Master (IM), has officially joined ACC's chess instructor team.

    This is an exciting development for ACC, as Mark has developed a comprehensive online chess curriculum aimed at those students who are currently playing in rated tournaments and have a CFC ELO of approximately 1000 and higher. Mark's specialty is in working closely with junior players who are looking for rapid ratings growth, and are able to handle advanced chess topics such as positional chess, maneuvering chess, strategy and tactics, attacking and defending, and endgames.  

    When asked about this new development, ACC Board Member Michael Sutton, said:

    "We're really honoured to have IM Mark Plotkin join our teaching program at ACC. His commitment to work with younger players is exciting, and fits our mission. We expect many new masters in the future. Great for our Club, great for Canada!"

    Mark's first online offering for ACC will be "Positional Chess – Challenges and Rewards." This 8-week course will run on Tuesday evenings from 7:00 to 8:30 PM beginning on March 28, 2023.

    Mark writes the following about the topic of his first ACC class:

    "Positional chess refers to a style of chess where a player focuses on creating the best possible position for themselves rather than going for an attack, or winning through a tactic. Such examples will be to have control over key squares, establishing space, dominating your opponent’s pieces, and improving your own pieces. A player that plays through a 'positional' style will rely on plans that unfold in a few moves rather than searching for the quick kill shot that ends the game, and you will see incremental progress. Thus, an important idea that is taught is to be patient, gradually improve your position and don’t look for flashy moves.

    Positional chess is often associated with players who have a deep understanding of the game and can see several moves ahead. It requires a good knowledge of chess strategy, including an understanding of pawn structure, piece placement, and the strengths and weaknesses of different types of positions. While it can be less exciting to watch than tactical chess, it can be just as challenging and rewarding, and many of the greatest chess players in history, such as Anatoly Karpov and José Raúl Capablanca, are recognized today for their strong positional play."

    We are pleased that Mark will be providing online classes Tuesday evenings, while FM Michael Humphreys will continue providing his online classes Thursday evenings. Together, these two great instructors allow us to expand our coverage of advanced chess topics. An additional discount will be provided to those students who want to take both online classes simultaneously.

    Plans for the rollout of Mark's online classes for Tuesday evenings include a complimentary Introduction to Positional Chess class on Tuesday, March 21, 2023. This will be for advanced chess players of all ages who are seeking to improve the quality of their play and improve their ratings.

    Mark continues to be an active tournament player and in 2022, he played in the following ACC events:

    • Ontario Open (tied for 2nd with 4.5/6 pts)
    • Toronto Blitz (tied 4th with 11/14 pts)
    • Halloween Rapid (1st with 4.5/5 pts)
    • GTCL Cup (team and individual 1st)

    He also actively participated in ACC’s 2022 Hikaru Nakamura Blitz Event on October 16, 2022 by playing blitz games with Club members and other visitors.

    Welcome aboard Mark!

  • February 09, 2023 3:06 AM | George Supol

    Last night, Joey Votto came to the Club to see us on his way down to the Raptors game. Michael Sutton, fellow ACC Board member, and I presented Joey, a registered ACC member, with a couple of our red hats as a gift from the Club. Outside of our Board members, ACC red hats have, until now, only been given to chess Grandmasters who visit the Club.

    One of the two hats Joey received has ACC’s normal motto (“Chess for Everyone!“) engraved on the back of it. The other hat’s custom engraving says “Chess for Joey Votto!

    We also gave Joey a chess book from our library, “100 Chess Master Trade Secrets,” written by GM Andrew Soltis, and published by Batsford Books in 2013. This book will no doubt help Joey further develop his chess technique, so watch out fellow chess players—Joey’s got focus!

    Joey leaves us for a while as he begins his journey back to active Major League Baseball, starting with spring training. We wish you continued great success Joey, and we thank you for recently shining your light on Annex Chess Club.

    Joey and George

    Joey Votto and George Supol

<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   Next >  Last >> 


Privacy Policy

Site Map

Call or Email Us

918 Bathurst Street
Toronto, ON M5R 3G5