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[Seattle Go Center] Go Center closed tomorrow (and for a few weeks, with a few exceptions)

Hello fellow Go enthusiasts and families,

The Go Center is suspending most routine operations effective immediately, due to concern for everyone's health and safety while the COVID-19 novel coronavirus emergency plays out.  We're sorry for the short notice if you were planning to attend Saturday.  We encourage everyone to keep playing Go at home, and to return to the Go Center when we reopen.  And we will be exploring online options for the Seattle area Go community (separate email forthcoming).

We will be closed (with exceptions noted below) at least through March 29.  We will reassess then about whether to open on March 30 or March 31.

The Saturday "Programming Computer Go AI" meetup is suspended as far as face-to-face meetups go, but it is available through the Slack channel, and a dedicated Google Groups email list (ask Drew lutrasis@gmail.com to add you if you're not already on it).  Drew will be reaching out through Meetup.com, Slack, and the AI email list to keep the momentum going.

The twice-monthly Shogi meetups will be online during this emergency, at 81Dojo.  Up-to-date event details can be found on the Seattle Shogi Meetup page:  https://www.meetup.com/Seattle-Shogi-Meetup  (no meetup.com account needed to see the info) and Brandon reports that "Last week's event was the first ever live-streamed on Twitch. Attendance was actually higher than a typical in-person even and we even got some strong players from outside Washington to participate! This success in spite of COVID-19 is encouraging so far."

As of now, the Monday "Double Digit Kyu" class still will run this Monday, March 16 at 6:30pm.  Dr. Nick will make further announcements about the DDK lectures.

Paid Private Instruction (which usually happens when the Go Center is closed) can continue, as long as teacher and student agree to observe certain precautions.  Contact programs@SeattleGo.org for details.

The annual Go Center membership meeting, where Directors are elected, is postponed until (probably) mid-April.  Please stay tuned for further announcements.

The Board of Directors meeting scheduled for March 22 will happen as scheduled, with additional precautions about interpersonal distance and cleaning.  And, probably half the attendees will attend by teleconference technology.  (These meetings are open to observation, but honestly, most Go players would rather play Go than observe the Directors discussing finances and long-term planning.  That's why we're so grateful to the Directors -- they take care of the boring stuff, so the rest of us can focus on on our Go.  If you want to attend, contact programs@SeattleGo.org to make arrangements.)

The monthly AGA ratings tournament scheduled for April 5 is uncertain.  We will reassess on March 29 whether to hold it as scheduled, postpone it, or cancel until May.

The April outreach events -- Sakura-Con, Cherry Blossom Festival (at Seattle Center) -- seem to be planning to run as scheduled, so if things have settled down by then, the Go Center may be participating.

This was a difficult decision to reach, because we believe in the importance of face-to-face community games.  But safety must come first.  Several of our community are at elevated risk for severe illness, or live with / take care of people at elevated risk.  Helping to slow the spread of COVID-19 is the right thing to do.

See you (later) at the Go Center,

--   Mike Malveaux  Seattle Go Center Programs Manager    email: programs@SeattleGo.org  web: www.SeattleGo.org  Go Center phone: 206-545-1424

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