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Archive for Friday, January 13, 2006

Lindsborg chess school building put on market

January 13, 2006

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— The building housing a chess school that brought Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev to town in October is up for sale, and the director of the school is moving to Chicago.

But officials with the Karpov International School of Chess say the work of the school, which has brought international attention to Lindsborg, will continue.

The building housing the school has been for sale since Christmas, said Wes Fisk, publicist for the Chess for Peace program. The two-story building was listed at $110,000.

Gorbachev, former president of the Soviet Union, visited Lindsborg and watched the "Class of the Titans" match between seven-time world chess champion Anatoly Karpov and four-time women's world champion Susan Polgar. Gorbachev was there to help Karpov promote his Chess for Peace program, an international initiative to use the game to unite people of different cultures.

But an $18,000 donation from Lindsborg, $15,000 from the state, private contributions and money from ticket and merchandise sales did not pay the $150,000 bill for Gorbachev's visit.

Mikhail Korenman, director of the school, said he and his assistant hadn't been paid in two months. Korenman used his Russian connections to bring chess grandmasters to Lindsborg beginning in 2001, making this small central Kansas town something of an international chess mecca.

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