Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Lubbock Shows Air Travelers its Knight Life

Lubbock Shows Air Travelers its Knight Life

Two new airport displays focus on the importance of chess in Lubbock.
Written by Cory Chandler

In the past year, Lubbock and Texas Tech University have embraced chess like no other community in the U.S.

The Texas Tech Susan Polgar Institute for Chess Excellence (SPICE), Visit Lubbock and the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting to introduce two new displays at the Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport, showing visitors why the Hub City has the best “Knight” life in Texas.

Two large-scale chess sets located on the east and west wings of the terminal, now provide entertainment for travelers while a plaque, posters and other information promote SPICE and chess activities in Lubbock.

Lubbock and Texas Tech were named co-city and co-university of the year, respectively, by the U.S. Chess Federation.

“Susan Polgar and the SPICE program have opened the door to a world that not only enhances the university’s profile, but has increased Lubbock’s exposure to international tourists,” said Marcy Jarrett, executive director of Visit Lubbock.

SPICE hosts a number of invitational and open tournaments throughout the year for everyone from enthusiasts to international champions.

The 2008 SPICE Cup (a FIDE category 15 event) was the highest rated tournament of its kind ever held on U.S. soil and featured players from countries including Iceland, India, Poland, Germany and Russia; the Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls brought female chess players from nearly every U.S. state to Lubbock for competition.

Source: TTU

SPICE stands for Susan Polgar Institute for Chess Excellence at Texas Tech University (

The Susan Polgar Institute for Chess Excellence (SPICE) is the model for the highest standard in chess education. Directed by Susan Polgar, the institute is poised to become the world’s premier center for chess research, education, development and outreach.

Through SPICE, Texas Tech has focused the resources of a major university and Big 12 Conference member on providing scholarships for players, conducting research into various aspects of the game, championing scholastic, college and women’s chess and housing an outreach program bringing chess to enthusiasts of all ages.

The SPICE Mission

· To promote chess as a vehicle for enriching education
· To support and promote competitive chess at college level
· To recruit outstanding undergraduate and graduate students
· To bring national and international recognition to TTU and TTUHSC
· To be the leader in promoting women's chess
· To serve as the global center for chess research, education and outreach
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