American Go E-Journal

Burning Board Go Festival blazes with passion for the game

Tuesday June 21, 2022

report by Bob Bacon*

The Burning Board Go Festival was held June 13-19 at Umstead State Park in Raleigh, North Carolina. The event featured a 6-round tournament from June 16-18, as well as numerous instructive workshops, simultaneous games and lectures by Ying Shen 2P and Yuan Zhou. The 50 attendees had the option to stay onsite in primitive cabins or commute, and about half braved the elements. While participants faced two days with unusually high temperatures for June, the sweltering heat was mitigated by the majestic canopy of sheltering trees and the cooling waters of an adjacent lake open for swimming. Attendees came not only from the surrounding cities but also from as far away as the Canary Islands, Texas, Michigan, Virginia, Massachusetts, New York and several from the Baduk House teaching residency program in Ohio. The festival finished with a splendid outdoor picnic and the burning of a ceremonial go board created for the occasion by Tom Bitonti. The Triangle Go Group hopes to make the festival an annual event.

The tournament was smoothly and professionally directed by Devin Fraze, and all rounds began very close to the designated times. We had 39 players, almost all of them playing all 6 rounds. The winner of the Open Section was Chen Yuan, who was on fire, winning all six of his games for the only perfect record of the tournament. Second place went to Derek Zhou, burning brightly as well. Third place in this highly competitive section was awarded to Micah Feldman.

Section A was captured by fiery Daniel Lambert, followed by Boris Bernadsky in second and Xiaoping Wu in third.

Section B witnessed another blazing performance by Javier Gonzalex winning 5 of his games and rising like smoke to the top of this pack. Peter Armenia secured second place, with Bart Jacob winning third.

Section C was somehow won by Bob Bacon although an investigation into this outcome will likely begin soon. Second place was seized by red-hot Ursa Woodring, and Matthew Gregoire battled his way to third.

Russell Herman’s games were smoking hot in Section D and he won first place, followed closely by smoldering Mei Cai in second and Paul Mendola in third.

We also recognized David Shao, the youngest player attending, with a trophy, as well as the participant winning the most self-paired rated games, Micah Feldman.

Lunch was provided by the hosts Triangle Go Group during the tournament, as well as trophies and $800 in prize money.

Thank you to all the wonderful enthusiastic go players and non-players who made this event a success! Photos will be published on the Triangle Go Club Facebook page and website in the near future.

*who is solely responsible for any flame-related puns contained herein, except for the headline, which was inspired by Bob’s heated prose.