Where Chess Is King On Tuesday Nights – Stone County Leader

Chess Study

The boards are set. Pieces in place. Chairs set face-to-face. There wont be a lot of popcorn or soda, just studious expressions and hesitant hands that reach for one piece, then draw back, moving with more confidence. The possibilities are endless.Its Tuesday. Straight up and down 6 p.m.

That means its Chess Night at the Stone County Community Center on the courtsquare in downtown Mountain View. Pass through here and you may find a future space shuttle commander or cabinet member or maybe just some people having fun.

Its a hangout for local chess celebrities including two members of Mountain View High Schools state championship team. Nate Franks and Will Fowlkes have felt the pressure that goes with competing against some of the best players in the state.

I started in the ninth grade and was just curious about the game, Franks said. Its good mental exercise. You look at what you can do and what your opponent can do for each move. Chess is a game where one wrong move can destroy everything.

Franks, a senior in the next school year, considers himself a decent player who can compete with just about anyone else his age. Its unique, he said. Chess makes you think in multiple directions and at multiple levels. There are few other things in life that make you think that way.

Will Fowlkes is an academic standout with several Quiz Bowl championships to his credit. He learned about the games movements around age 8 and became a more serious player at 12.

An incoming freshman at Vanderbilt who will study economics, physics and math, Fowlkes most appreciates the independent nature of the game.

Its deterministic. There is no luck involved. No cards to deal, no dice to roll. Any win is all you, and any loss is all you. No one else gets the credit or the blame, Fowlkes said.

See the full story in the July 7, 2021, issue.

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Where Chess Is King On Tuesday Nights - Stone County Leader

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