Skip to page body Home About Us What's New Departments & Services Residents Businesses Visitors How Do I…?
Learning Chess Techniques 
 Chess Concentration
 Friendly Competition
Sunrise: Proud Winner of the U.S. Chess Federation's "2015 Chess City of the Year" Award!

Chess in the educational environment has been a popular topic among researchers – many of whom report a strong correlation between learning to play chess and academic achievement. According to a landmark 2000 study published in the journal “Research in the Schools,” students who received chess instruction scored significantly higher on all measures of academic achievement, including math, spatial analysis, and non-verbal reasoning ability.

The City of Sunrise has collaborated with community partners to promote the scholastic benefits of chess by encouraging the development of after-school chess clubs in all schools; providing privately donated chess sets to each Sunrise public school; establishing an “adopt a chess club” program; and hosting family fun chess nights at local restaurants. In addition, the City facilitates the following chess initiatives:

Mayors' Chess Challenges
Mayors’ Chess Challenges are friendly competitions that bring together elected officials, community leaders, students, families and chess players of all ages and abilities to support and celebrate scholastic and community-based chess programs. The free events, spearheaded by Sunrise Mayor Michael J. Ryan in cooperation with Mayors from throughout Broward County, are designed to draw attention to the benefits of chess in both the academic environment and in our community. It’s also an opportunity for players of all ages, novices and experts alike, to join in the fun. Instructors are on hand to help those new to the game. 

A new series of Mayors' Chess Challenges has been announced for the 2017-2018 school year!

City of Fort Lauderdale: Saturday, September 16, at 10:00 a.m. (Cancelled due to Hurricane Irma)
Museum of Discovery and Science, 401 SW 2nd Street

Town of Davie: Saturday, October 7, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Pine Island Multipurpose Center, 3801 South Pine Island Drive

CITY OF SUNRISE: Saturday, October 14, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Sunrise Civic Center, 10610 West Oakland Park Boulevard

City of Tamarac: Saturday, November 4, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Tamarac Community Center, 8601 West Commercial Boulevard

City of Deerfield Beach: Saturday, November 18, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Hillsboro Technology Center, 50 Hillsboro Technology Drive

City of Lauderhill: Saturday, December 2, at 9:30 a.m.
Veterans Park, 7600 NW 50th Street

City of Weston: Saturday, December 9, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Weston Community Center, 20200 Saddle Club Road

City of Coconut Creek: Saturday, December 16, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Coconut Creek Community Center, 1100 Lyons Road

City of Dania Beach: Wednesday, December 20, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
CW Thomas Park, 100 NW 8th Avenue

City of Coral Springs: Saturday, January 13, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
Coral Glades High School, 2700 Sportsplex Drive

City of Parkland: Saturday, January 20, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Parkland Recreation and Enrichment Center, 10599 Trails End

City of Cooper City: Saturday,February 17, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
Pool & Tennis Center, 11600 Stonebridge Parkway

City of Hollywood: Saturday, March 10, from 9:00 a.m. to noon
Fred Littman Multipurpose Center, 2030 Polk Street

City of Oakland Park: Saturday, March 24, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Jaco Pastorius Park Community Center, 1098 NE 40th Court

City of Wilton Manors: Saturday, April 14, from 10:00 a.m. to noon
Hagen Park Community Center, 2020 Wilton Drive

City of Lauderdale Lakes: Thursday, April 26, from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Multipurpose Building, 4340 NW 36th Street

City of Miramar: Saturday, May 5, from 9:00 a.m. to noon
Sunset Lakes Community Center, 2801 SW 186th Avenue

City of Pembroke Pines: Saturday, May 19, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
Club 19 at Pembroke Lakes Golf & Racquet Club, 10500 Taft Street

Date and time for City of Hallandale Beach will be announced soon!

Open-Play Chess
The City of Sunrise hosts FREE open-play chess sessions each Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to noon in the lobby of the Sunrise Civic Center Theatre (10610 West Oakland Park Boulevard). People of all ages and skill levels, including those who have never played chess, are invited to participate in supervised open play. Thanks to the Sunrise Center for Excellence in Chess, free instruction is provided.

Open-play chess creates year-round opportunities for friendly competition and learning, and supplements the work of school-based groups in Sunrise. For more information, call (954) 746-3207.

The Sunrise Senior Center (10650 West Oakland Park Boulevard) hosts a chess club each Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. For details, please call (954) 746-3670.

Free “Champions of Chess” Student Tournaments
The City of Sunrise began hosting its annual Champions of Chess tournament in 2012. Students of all ages gather at the event for camaraderie - and bragging rights. The tournament begins with round-robin play followed by the winners’ single-elimination bracket. All participants receive a t-shirt, and tournament champs take home a prize. For more information call (954) 747-4600.

"First Move” from America's Foundation for Chess
During the 2013-2014 academic year - and for the first time in Broward County history - students in second and third grade received formal chess instruction as part of their school curriculum. This innovative pilot program involved 40 classrooms at Village Elementary, Banyan Elementary and Discovery Elementary - all in Sunrise - and was a collaboration of the School Board of Broward County, the America’s Foundation for Chess “First Move” program, and the City of Sunrise Police Department. The award-winning, standards-aligned "First Move" uses chess as a learning tool to enhance the core curriculum while improving students’ critical thinking and test taking skills. Through this program, students nationwide have demonstrated better understanding of math concepts at an earlier age and developed gains in reading and comprehension. 

Thanks to Mayor Ryan’s advocacy and the overwhelming support of administrators, faculty, parents and students, “First Move” has been adopted in all second and third grade classrooms in public schools countywide.

For more information about First Move, visit

National and Local Recognition
Sunrise's scholastic chess initiative has been recognized for excellence by prominent organizations.
  • Sunrise was named Chess City of the Year for 2015 by the United States Chess Federation (US Chess). The City was selected for this prestigious honor by the Executive Board of US Chess “in recognition of the positive impact [Sunrise] citizens have made on chess in America.” 
  • The U.S. Conference of Mayors named Sunrise one of “Most Livable” Cities in America for 2015 on the strength of its scholastic chess programs and Mayor Ryan's support of community-based chess.
  • The Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance - Broward County's leading economic development organization - presented Sunrise with its 2016 Education Partnership Award. The award recognized the role of chess as an economic development tool - developing the critical thinking skills the next generation needs in order to innovate and succeed in the workforce.
Last updated: 7/11/2018 6:18:15 AM