Sunday, October 26, 2008

Flushing "Hanguk Kiwon" Go Club

Hanguk Kiwon Go Club
36-18 Union Street
Flushing Queens, New York

(Ratings out of 5 *'s)
Average Attendance: ****
Events *
Equipment ***
Beginner Friendly **
Player Strength ****
Store *
Refreshments ****
Study Recources **
Hours *****

Overall ***
Smoking: yes
Entrance Fee $10/day $5/students

This club seems rather intimidating to newcomers. There is no sign hinting at a Go club, at least not in English. It is located on the busy Union Street, amidst a stew of hair salons bakeries, and travel agents. However once you figure out where it is, and enter inside it still seems pretty un-inviting.

That is wrong however. Although there are no beginners in this club that I know of, the Manager will find you a game, or give you a lesson regardless of your ability. He speaks english well, so you should not worry about the language barrier. There are good opponents ranging from about 10kyu to about 6 or 7d

Although there is a teaching board in the club, I have never seen a formal lecture, I might be wrong, as I was only there 5 or 6 times. There are also a few Korean Language go magazines, but overall study materials are really few.

This club has an interesting feature of having free refreshments, including tea, coffee, juice, and even a little Asian* yogurt drink.

There is also a Mah-Jong room, but I was not allowed to take any pictures.

Just a warning there IS SMOKING in this club like most other Korean Go Clubs.

To sum it up This is a good club for playing, if you can tolerate smoke. The entrance fee is low, you will find an opponent, and they have a fair range of strengths. You won't find formal instruction, or books to study, but there are free beverages to keep your energy up while you play.


*This is not meant to be racist, this yogurt drink is sold in China, Japan, and Korea and I do not know where else. Also I am not sure where it is from.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My Students

In the past two weeks, I seem to have picked up 3 students.

One of them, MayhemFrank, I met on Godisscusions. Timothy president of Neon Sandwich, I met while walking in the park, and the Third, to whom I have so far only spoken to through e-mail, I do not know anything about.

My students all pay me, but in various ways. Mayhem teaches me secret strategies to a certain videogame, Timothy is supposed to read my future, and the third and I agreed to cash.

This brings me to my next point, is it wrong for me to take money for teaching? I feel a little guilty considering I am only 4 kyu right now, but I need money to eat while I am in Korea. My only income is about $100/weekly from the after school go program I run, and about 3 dollars a day I make from you guys clicking on the Ads on this page.

I enjoy teaching, but I need a hand, To the stronger readers of this Blog: any reccomended lesson plans?
So far lessons that I have set:

Two Eyes/why corners first
Various Escaping from situations problems
Keeping your stones connected/Your opponent disconnected.

Thats all for now, let me hear feedback, and if you want to support my Go studies refer to 4th paragraph.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Masters Open

At the New York Open, Dae Yol Kim 7d, Young Kwon 7d and I met to discuss how to attract the Korean Community to the AGA.

There were many things that we spoke about, but that will come in another post... maybe.

For now we are going to have the Masters Open.

1st prize: $800 or more

2nd prize: $400

3rd prize: $200

The entry fee for the Tournament is as follows

AGA members : $40
Non Members $50 (includes 1 year membership.)

All games will be even, and only the top three finishers will recieve prizes.

This is the first step of our plan to get the Korean players to Join the AGA.

There are so many korean players, and I honestly think that they might enjoy a little heterogenity as far as their pool of opponents goes.

More on this later....

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

New York Go Center: Reviewed

Hey guys since I have attended many Go clubs around, I decided that I will review them, maybe post a few pictures. Be sure to read the review and not just look at the star points

(Ratings out of 5 *'s)
Average Attendance: ***
Events *****
Equipment *****
Beginner Friendly *****
Player Strength ***
Store ****
Refreshments **
Study Recources *****
Hours ****

Overall ****
Entrance Fee $7/day $5/students

Although I am the Vice President of the New York Go Center I will try my best to be unbaised.

So lets start with the Bad. The attendance is low. The Heater makes a strange noise, that caused me to get rather sleepy all winter. The paint is chipped in a few places, and the club has been mis-managed for years. I would like to think that in the past year, my efforts have helped it along the way.

The good: Although there aren't that many players, there are always at least two just waiting to play with you and teach you. There is a resident instructor at all times, as well as the host. Our hosts range in strengths from 5k-3d.

The Resident Instructor is someone chosen by the Nihon Ki-in, who loves go and stays in New York For three months just to teach. Our current Instructor, Hyodo Shunichi, is an AGA 7d. The Daily host has a lot of experience teaching, and is always available for a game. On Average about 5 people are present at the Go Center. More on weekends

There is an extensive library of go books in English, Korean and Japanese. They have antique and out of print books.

Just recently the New York Go Center started selling go equipment, they have a 1 3/4 inch board for just 30 dollars. Stones start at 15, and wooden bowls are 18. They also have a large selection of books at discounted prices for members.

Monthly tournaments are held at the Go Center, as well as "Special" tournaments. Lectures are held at center, although these are rather irregular. If there are any strong local players interested, please contact the NYGC at

Honestly the Go Center is a great club for players of all strengths and ages. You always have an opponent, great study material, and no cigarette smoke.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Hello, and Welcome

My name is Boris Bernadsky.

I am 19 years old,
and on December 9th I will fly away from New York to join the International Baduk Academy.

When people ask me what do I do I tell them I am a Go Player.

I began playing about 4 years ago at summer camp.

We did not have our own board so we made on out of clay (pieces) and a piece of linoleum (board)

I started a High School Go club that had about 20 regulars, somedays we had over 30 attendees.

After high school I kept playing, and Became involved with the New York Go Center. I started running tournaments, and doing small upgrades to the club.

We started selling equipment, books, and started a game analysis night. I organized for other clubs to come visit us. This September on my birthday I got promoted to Vice President of the Club.

Over the last summer I was incredibly lucky, as I convinced an after school/Summer camp program to let me teach Go instead of chess. So over the summer I had about 150 students that I taught to play the game.

I got lucky a second time because I was allowed to continue my program into the school year.

Currently I have about 20 students whom I see once a week (two classes)

Anyway....that's me. I Play Go, I teach Go, I promote Go.

(I also have a Girlfriend whom I absolutely love, and will marry one day who abhors the game.)

-Boris ~4k

Sunday, October 12, 2008

New York Open 2008

The New York Open is a Tournament I created.

I enlisted the help of Christopher Vu to be my Tournament Director.

While I was the tournament organizer.

The Idea of it was to have a annually or Semi-Annually occurring large tournament in NYC.

I advertised it to have a relatively large first place prize of $500.

It would take place over 2 days have 5 rounds.

All games would be even, and it would be broken up into separate divisions.

Here is the report...

October 10th-
The New York Go Open is the next day. The New York Go Center was a mess. Christopher Vu, the tournament director, and I, The organizer were at the go center until 12 am reorganizing, and decorating. Hiding holes in the wall, shooing away moths and setting up all the tables.

We finally got home and to bed around 2 am. Chris stayed on my couch so that he would not have to trek 1 hour in the middle of the night.

My main concern was that we would have enough seats to fit everyone in.

October 11th-

42 people showed up for the tournament. 48 had pre-registered, and a few people promised they would bring friends. Only 42 people actually made it. The main problem with this was providing the $500 top prize that I had promised. We made it by, if the Go Center was more strict with rent, I do not know what we would have done.

Anyway it was a lot more action the our club had seen in a long time so we were pretty happy regardless.

We set up a Go In Our Garden Review Area where many player were studying in between rounds.

A notable quote from Andy Liu "When you are 1d you should be able to remember your games. This is one of the big differences between a 1d and a 4kyu"

I did awful in my games today. Although I won the first one I played by 5.5, I lost the second two. The second game, I lost when my opponenet threatened to, either a. Cut two groups in half, or b. capture a stone. I chose the wrong one. We went back and counted what would happen if i chose b....I would have won by 12.

The third game I played I just played horrendously the whole time, I lost an even game to a supposed 13k. (I think he was sandbagging since he finished 2wins 3 losses in the 9k-1k division)
BTW he was the Tournament Organizer, and he entered this division so that we would have an even number of players.

There was one incident at the event. One of the 5d players lost on time. He made a huge fuss about it. His logic was since his clock did not warn him he was running out of time, it was somehow not fair. Keep in mind the time settings were 1h base and 5 of 30 byo-yomi.

He was yelling and making threats, so to calm him down I gave him an additional 30 sec period, that beeped every second.

He lost the game by a large margin to a 12 year old 5d, Andrew Huang.

I felt awful for the kid because his opponent was creating such a fuss. I am not sure what I would have done in the kids place.

Overall the first day was a success. One thing that I must mention is that all the food that you participants ate was donated by our Tournament Director Christopher Vu. Next time you see him make sure to thank him.

Pictures from day 1.

1. Me (blue shirt) V. Chris Vu

2.Anthony Fiengold 3k John Mangual 5k
Matthew Palumbo 2k Robin Xu 4k (back to front right to left)

3. Howard Wong 5k

4. S-division (6d+)

1. Four 6d battling.
2. John David 5d vs. Andrew Huang 5d
3. Andy Liu 9d vs Jie Liang 8d
4. Dae Yol Kim 7d, and Xiliang Liu 7d in thought
5. Hyodo Shunichi 7d (second from the front)

1. Post game review
Haskel Small, Alfred Teng Michael Fodera (all 3d)
2. Kyu section
October 12th-

Chris and I made it over to the Center at 9:15 am, the tournament would be starting at 10, and we had a little work to do.

About 15 people dropped out of the second day, and 2 more joined in. The games went smoothly and people seemed pretty happy Overall.

The prizes were as Follows:

S Division
1st Place $400.00 (Andy Liu 9d)
2nd Place $100.00 (Xiliang Liu 7d)

A Division

1st Place $100.00 (Ke Lu 5d)
2nd Place $60.00 (June Joung Kim 2d)

B Division

1st Place $90.00 (Afa Zhou 1k)
2nd Place Book or Go Equipment of choice (Robin Xu 4k)

C Division
1st Place Book or Go Equipment of choice (Jesy Felicia 14k)
2nd (tie) Book or Go Equipment of choice (Betsey small 13k, and Fredrick Smadja 12k)

Winners Pictures

1. All together
2. C Division
3. A Division
4. S division

Anyway I hope everyone had a great time.

Next year I will try my best to make the tournament bigger and better, and more organized as far as starting times go.

Final standings whole tournament


  1. Andy Liu (9893) (5-0)
  2. Xiliang Liu (14179) (4-1)
  3. Young Kwon (433) (3-2)
  4. Oh Tae Hwan (4350) (3-2)
  5. Liang Jie (11018) (2-3)
  6. Zhong, Yu (8975) (2-3)
  7. Kim, Dae-Yol (3039) (2-1)
  8. Zhou, Xun (7316) (2-1)
  9. Hyodo, Shunichi (6157) (1-4)
  10. Chen, Yong (5018) (1-3)
  11. Verkhovsky, Simon (6769) (1-2)
  12. Liu, Yong-xin (3700) (0-3)


1. Ke Lu (11746) (5-0)

2. Kim, Joung June (99999) (4-1)

  1. Teng, Yu Jen (14233) (4-1)
  2. Andrew Huang (13637) (4-1)
  3. Chen, Walter (11796) (3-2)
  4. Paul Anderson (1448) (2-3)
  5. Marc Palmer (4291) (2-3)
  6. Fodera, Michael (16547) (2-3)
  7. Haskell Small (1062) (2-3)
  8. Saul Lapidus (10587) (2-3)
  9. Matthew Bengtson (19) (2-1)
  10. Yu, Stephen (4002) (0-5)
  11. John David (99998) (0-3)
  12. Justin Johnson (14909) (0-3)

Division B – Final Standings

  1. Afa Zhou (10817) [4.5-0.5]
  2. Robin Xu (16845) [4.0-1.0]
  3. Howard Wong (14893) [3.0-2.0]
  4. John Mangual (11454) [3.0-2.0]
  5. Anthony Feingold (14448) [3.0-1.0]
  6. Carrie Lapidus (10828) [2.0-3.0]
  7. Christopher Vu (11614) [2.0-3.0]
  8. Leonaurd Baum (9420) [1.0-4.0]
  9. Boris Bernandsky (13734) [1.0-4.0]
  10. Avi Mowshovitz (14885) [1.0-1.0]
  11. Joshua Gang (14514) [1.0-0.0]
  12. Matthew Palumbo (14643) [0.0-3.0]

Division C – Final Standings

  1. Jesy Feliccia (14592) [5.0-0.0]
  2. Frederic Smadja (16887) [3.0-2.0]
  1. Elizabeth Small (2098) [3.0-2.0]
  2. Barbara Huang (14149) [2.0-3.0]
  3. Diana Huang (14150) [2.0-3.0]
  4. Daren Huang (14165) [2.0-3.0]
  5. Joanne Huang (14145) [1.0-4.0]
  6. Janis Rancourt (16005) [0.0-3.0]

-Boris Bernadsky about 4k.