2017 Prairie Chess Camp

Welcome to the 2017 Prairie Chess Camp Website

The 2017 Prairie Chess Camp dates are July 17-21.

View Current Registrations

Camp hours are 8 am to 4:30 pm with 30 minute early drop off and late pickup.

Transportation to/from Iowa City West High School available.

Registration is limited to 64 students currently in 1st through 11th grades.

We do sell out and so early registration is encouraged.

Feel free to contact james.hodina@chessiniowa.org with any questions.


The Prairie Chess Camp will be held again at the Prairie Point Middle School (next door to The Kirkwood Hotel). Instruction is provide by FIDE Master's Alex Betaneli and Erik Santarius of the Wisconsin Chess Academy and Iowa's own USCF Master Dan Brashaw.


The registration fee is $275, which includes lunch and a morning and afternoon snack. If you chose to pay using PayPal (credit card), a PayPal service fee will be applied ($6.34 for the camp). Enrollment is limited, so payment is due with your registration. The refund policy for cancelling is 100% by June 17, 75% by June 24, 50% by June 30, 25% by July 7, & 10% by July 14.


Transportation to/from Iowa City West High School is also being made available. A College Community School District (a.k.a. Prairie) school bus will pick up at Iowa City West High School at 7:30 am, arriving at Prairie Point at 8:00 am. The bus will leave Prairie Point at 4:30 pm and drop off back Iowa City West at 5:00 pm. This service is available for a 5-day price of $45 per person. You may register for this transportation services with your camp registration for a total of $320. If you chose to pay using PayPal (credit card), a PayPal service fee will be applied ($1.28 for the bus).

Senior Master

Alex Betaneli

Senior Master

Erik Santarius

Wisconsin State Champion in 2000, 2001, 2005, and 2012. He frequently writes for the most widely read American chess magazine Chess Life. Alex’s students consistently win titles at both state and national levels.

National Master

Dan Brashaw

Wisconsin State Champion in 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2013. He has four International Master norms and will be awarded the title once his international rating reaches 2400. Erik’s students consistently win awards in individual and team competitions.

National Master

James Neal

Dan is a USCF Master the current Iowa State Chess Champion, three years running. Dan returns following his third year at the Prairie Chess Camp. Dan is the former Iowa High School state champion and representative to the National Denker Tournament of High School Champions.

James Neal, USCF Master, is our newest addition to the Prairie Chess Camp. A familiar face in the Iowa Closed Championships, James has already won the Okoboji Open and Ames Open in 2017. James a popular chess instructor with many students the Iowa City Area.