American Go E-Journal

Nihon Kiin Urged Not to Sell Seattle Go Center

Sunday March 4, 2012

Calling it “active and successful,” and “a gateway to/from Asia,”  top leadership of the American Go Association on Feb. 27 urged the Nihon Kiin not to sell the Seattle Go Center (SGC), after rumors to that effect began to circulate. “The Center regularly hosts many tournaments, and provides playing space, teaching games, and lessons for both beginners and advanced players,” wrote Allan Abramson, AGA President, Andrew Okun, AGA Board Chairman and Thomas Hsiang, AGA International Vice President in a letter to Otake Hideo, Chairman of the Board of Directors at the Nihon Kiin. “In addition, the Center regularly conducts public outreach at festivals and other events, provides teachers for school go clubs, runs special tournaments for young players, and sponsors workshops by visiting professionals.”  The SGC had just celebrated its 16th anniversary last September, and the Jin Chen Memorial Tournament on Jan. 8  attracted 42 players, the largest AGA-rated event at the Seattle Go Center in several years. In the AGA’s letter to the Nihon Kiin, Abramson wrote that he remembered “the first time I walked through the door into the Center. Within five minutes, I felt the energy and spirit of the people working there. Most important, I felt the warmth and spirit of Iwamoto-Sensei, and his desire to promote Go around the world, in one great community.” Adding that “We would consider the loss of the Seattle Go Center to be a major blow to Go in the US, and hurtful to the many volunteers who have worked so hard and so long to make it a success,” Abramson, Okun and Hsiang urged that “In the spirit of Iwamoto-Sensei, we suggest that it would be best to continue to enjoy the success of the Seattle Go Center, rather than sell it.” The Nihon Kiin has not thus far responded to either the 2/27 letter, a subsequent email on Mar. 2 from Abramson, or the E-Journal’s request for comment. photo: at the September 18 Tacoma (WA) Go Club’s annual Back-To-School Tournament at the Seattle Go Center

Categories: U.S./North America