How To Find Chessmates And Chess Clubs

Chess is a game that bridges gaps, sparks conversations, and fosters a sense of community among its players. Whether you’re a beginner seeking a fun learning environment or a seasoned player aiming to improve your skills, joining a chess club can be a game-changing decision. This guide will help you navigate your search for chess clubs and communities.

The Importance of Chess Clubs

A chess club brings together chess enthusiasts in a collaborative environment, offering opportunities to play, learn, and socialize. Clubs can provide resources like coaching, tournaments, and peer games, making them an excellent place to enhance your chess skills.

Local Chess Clubs:

The first step to finding a chess club is to check your local community. Many cities and towns have chess clubs that meet regularly.

Libraries and Schools: These often host chess clubs or can provide information about local chess communities.
Local tournaments: Attending local chess tournaments is a great way to connect with other chess players and get information about clubs.
Recreation centers: Many community centers offer chess clubs or game nights.
For example, the Seattle Chess Club, the Marshall Chess Club in New York City, or the Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club in San Francisco are examples of local clubs with robust chess communities.

Online Chess Clubs:

If there are no local chess clubs in your area, or if you prefer a more flexible schedule, online chess clubs can be an excellent alternative.

Online Chess Websites: Websites like,, and the Internet Chess Club have virtual clubs where players can engage in games, tournaments, and forums.
Social Media: Platforms like Facebook and Reddit have chess groups where members share strategies, discuss games, and organize online matches.
Chess Clubs at Schools and Universities:

Many educational institutions have chess clubs, offering students the chance to play and learn chess. Schools like the University of Texas at Dallas and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County even offer chess scholarships.

National and Regional Chess Federations:

Most countries have a national chess federation, like the United States Chess Federation (USCF) or the English Chess Federation (ECF), which provide resources to help players find chess clubs.

Chess Cafes and Public Spaces:

Some cities have chess cafes or parks known for their chess culture. For instance, the Chess Forum in New York City or the famous tables at Washington Square Park are popular places for chess enthusiasts to play and connect.