Melvin Patrick plays a game of chess with a child at the club.
And one of them commented that he had `died and gone to chess heaven.' And that's exactly what we are going for," said Melvin Patrick, club director.
We'd go anywhere," Patrick
Anywhere also included the community room at the Norwalk Police Department
, Barnes & Noble
"Now we have the club on West Avenue, and it's custom designed for chess and for chess players of all ages, for the study of chess, for instruction, casual play and tournament play ... So often at scholastic events, parents find themselves sitting in cold hallways while their children play.
We offer comfortable lounges, a library with classic and modern chess texts and a break room," Patrick
, a Norwalk resident, has been bringing chess to the local community for years.
He founded Fairfield County Chess, the United States Chess Federation's Connecticut affiliate and has 16 years of scholastic chess under his belt.
He's developed chess curriculum for the Norwalk Housing Authority, the George Washington Carver Center, and is a chess instructor for the Norwalk Library.
Age is not the driver in what determines how strong of a chess player you are," Patrick
Like Lowinger, Patrick
can't remember a time when he
wasn't passionate about chess and he
wanted to share that passion with kids who went to the Carver Center
and who lived in housing operated by the NHA.
"I have always found it to be enjoyable, accessible and productive for children to learn....What got me involved in tournaments was I began working with the Norwalk Library
some four or five years ago and met Cliff Potts and the late Robert Musicant, who started chess at the library. (The library has since named the chess room at the library after Musicant.) Prior to meeting those to gentleman I had a full life and many interests, and then it was pretty much all chess, all the time," Patrick
said with a laugh.