Chess in Iowa

Welcome Players, Families, and the Chess  Community

Chess in Iowa is a non-profit organization with a mission to promote the advancement of chess and chess players in our community.  Through a staff of volunteers in the chess community, Chess in Iowa develops and promotes chess in our community.


MARCH 1-3, 2024


Both Open & Reserve (U1600) Sections

$2,000 in Cash Prizes

Saturday Night Blitz

USCF Rated; FIDE Rated in Open & Blitz

Register online at under Chess in Iowa

Click here for more information

2024 Prairie Chess Camp

July 20-21,2024 (10:00 am - 4:00 pm each day)

A weekend experience for scholastic chess players in grades 3-12. Instruction will be provided by titled players, including International Master Erik Santarius and National Master Alex Betaneli. 

We will have masterclasses and interactive discussions of strategy and tactics, supplemented by thematic tournaments and puzzle solving workshops. Plenty of time is set aside for outdoors. Arrival/drop-off is between 9:30am and 9:45am, pick-up is between 3:30pm and 4:00pm. Lunch and snacks are provided. The cost is $250. Chess in Iowa offers financial support to those families who cannot otherwise attend the camp. The camp is limited to 30 participants.

As past Chess in Iowa president and Prairie Chess Camp organizer, Jim Hodina has retired to the Carolinas and the 2024 Prairie Chess Camp will be organized by 15-year Prairie Chess Camp instructor, FM Alex Betaneli.   For additional information on the camp, please contact Alex at

An All-Ages chess club, we meet every Wednesday Night at the Cedar Rapids Downtown Public Library.  The meeting starts at 5:30 pm and continues until the library closes at 8 pm.  We enjoy casual play, entertain guest lecturers, and  host fun tournaments for everyone to compete.

Scholastic Chess Clubs for the Prairie School as the College Community School District.  Students in Grades 3-12 meet after school weekly when they receive instruction and time for playing chess against other students.  Additional opportunities to represent Prairie in scholastic tournaments is also available. 

A travelling chess team, the Iowa Pawn Stormers is a program that develops our top young chess talent in the area.  Students receive 26 weeks of advanced instruction and travel to major tournaments in the Midwest with their coaches.

Scholastic Chess Clubs

 Chess in Iowa supports a variety of scholastic chess clubs in the Cedar Rapids - Iowa City Corridor.  We make group purchases at discounted prices for such items as online chess accounts, chess equipment, and US Chess memberships. 

Scholastic & All-Ages Tournaments

Chess in Iowa sponsors many chess tournaments throughout the year.  Scholastic tournaments include a Midwest regional event, Ice Harbor Scholastic Open, and local events such as the Prairie Fall and Winter Classics.  All-ages events hosted by Chess in Iowa include the Cedar Rapids Open and Cedar Rapids Leather Jackets.

Chess in Iowa Board of Directors

Shawn Kmetz

 Dr. Robert Keating

Jim White

Eric Vigil

Peer Saleem

James Hodina


Ming Lodh

Romy Lodh


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Make a charitable donation to Chess in Iowa, a 501(c)3 charitable organization