Two more signed up for the Simon Williams Chess Festival this August, a Father and Son. Making it 33 right now. August 18-20. Pay for all 3 days (includes Friday evening, Saturday lectures, and the Sunday Simul…the Sunday evening Q&A with Simon is an additional $25).

We’ve been told we have room for 65 at the Ramada Inn in Bettendorf, Iowa. So we are more than halfway there.

As a marketer I have a slight tendency to worry but it’s not what you think kind of worrying. What I am trying to accomplish with this event is to show people, maybe even you, that chess can be fun and it isn’t necessary to kill yourself. And it can be fun for cheap. $170 for the event and Simul against the WILDMAN Simon Williams. A couple hundred more to stay at the Ramada, $100 or more for some food and upwards of several hundred dollars for transportation depending where you live and how you want to get here.

More info? Ask me at

Of course the locals in the Quad Cities area have it made but do they take advantage of it? NOPE. What’s new? They live here. Registration and the Simul is their only expense. Most of you guys/gals will fly into Moline International Airport but these guys will only live a few miles away!

It’s not just cheapness, it’s also cluelessness. Even though I have been to one of their chess clubs and handed out information I haven’t heard from them.

I hear from whiners about how it is the same weekend as the Iowa Open. And that is somehow MY fault. If I had my event 2 weeks earlier or 2 weeks later I would hear, “They are too close together!” If you look at the Tournament Life section in Chess Life you will see so many tournaments it would make your head spin. While I do believe in personal responsibility I don’t believe in being responsible for others’ fun!

I have customers who know me personally who I have not heard from. For whatever reason they ignore my contacting them to come. They won’t offer a reason. I can’t speculate in print, I might be wrong. But their unwillingness to register or even contact me says volumes about themselves.

But it’s not too late to register, meet the famous and fabulous Grandmaster Simon, just write to:

Do you remember the King who was having a wedding feast for his son in Matthew (the Bible)?

“But when the king came in to look over the dinner guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed in wedding clothes, and he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without wedding clothes?’ And the man was speechless. “Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ “For many are called, but few are chosen.”

Notice the part where it says “Speechless?”

While at the beginning of my little marketing epistle I said “no worrying,” what I am also trying to avoid is the last minute excuses or those who want in at the last minute because the Quad-Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau has been sending out on my behalf information to show those in the surrounding areas how to have a really good time without having to dip into drinking and carousing. So far we are not hearing from the Silent Minority. The ones who often like to go to cheap concerts in the park and we have them here, they are Blues Bands. Now don’t get on my ass about dissing Blues Bands. My sister Jeanne sang in one.

Several years ago when Borders Books was in business I knew the Manager at the Davenport location. He told me the Davenport Borders was one of the top stores (I think he said Top 10) in the nation in sales! I was somewhat surprised because I thought many in the QC area were really cheap when it came to spending money. He said, “Well, they are, but when we have special promotions on excess merchandise from other Borders stores, we sell a LOT of stuff!” Our store was a hub for bargains, closeouts, and to be frank, a lot of crap but they kept the store neat and clean. I suspect that many were buying gifts (not books) and stuff like that for Christmas and holidays. Then, finally, that store went under. Blame it on the MBAs.

For all the news commentary (our worst enemy!) about the decline in books and printing, chess books are coming out faster than ever before! (I am not kidding) But you know what? Relatively speaking, chess books are a bargain. One doesn’t have to buy every one that comes out, and some chess books can be read (amazing). People boast to me about their trips to Italy, Hawaii, and elsewhere but a trip down the street is too much! (As my grandson would say, “Grandpa you crack me up!”)

I forget the company who used to boast LIVE A LITTLE but it’s a truism. I am the one who sits at the computer telling you to LIVE A LITTLE when I should be doing that myself. I am on Social Security, and depend on it, are you? I hope not.

Come to the Summer Funfest. Read past BlogPosts for more information or drop me a line for details at PayPal, Visa, MC, Discover, and your check, all accepted.


Sign up and get a $20 gift certificate to spend at the event. Also, when you sign up you get a FREE book of Simon’s games called THE GRANDMASTER OF SHOCK & AWE, a $39.95 ($40) value! And, 20% OFF all books and sets for sale at the event. And right now, if you contact me ( ) you get a FREE subscription to the Chess Gazette up to the time of the event. We just need your name and email address.

Here’s the LAST (but not least thing), Simon is very funny. If you have a funny bone you will like his presentation (5-6 of them on Saturday alone). With over 15,000 chess fans watching his YouTube channel you will see why.

I am pretty sure there will be those who want to enter at the last minute, but once we are full, we are full, end of story. In the meantime, while time IS running short, call Jerry, Leigh, or Maria at the Ramada Inn (563) 355-7575 and also get Reward Points for the future. Summer is busy around the Quad-Cities, get your spot now. Tell them you want the Chess Festival rates.


(563-271-6657) or


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