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2013 Canadian National SCRABBLE Championship

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CNSC 2011 logo
Defending Champion Joel Wapnick

The 2013 Canadian National SCRABBLE Championship (CNSC), the eighth such event since its inception in 1996, will take place on June 21–24 at the Bond Place Hotel, 65 Dundas Street East, Toronto (map). Hasbro Canada is once again generously underwriting a $12,150 prize fund; this year for the first time, $2,000 of that fund will be awarded to a Canadian children’s charity.


Congratulations to Adam Logan, who becomes the first person ever to win the title four times, defeating Ross Brown in three straight games.
Congratulations to finalists Adam Logan and Ross Brown, who compete tomorrow in a best-of-five finals. See our event website for details.
Deen Hergott has had to withdraw from the CNSC. Lilla Sinanan, the top alternate, replaces Deen. Trevor Sealy now becomes the top alternate.
Wesley Yocom has had to withdraw from the CNSC. Priya Fernando, the top alternate, replaces Wesley. Lilla Sinanan is now the new top alternate.
Anita Rackham, who was elevated to the top position among the alternates, has informed John Chew that she cannot participate in the CNSC if another withdrawal occurs. Thus she has been removed from the list of alternates. Priya Fernando is now atop the alternates' list.
Vera Bigall has withdrawn from the CNSC. Joshua Castellano, who was atop the list of alternates, takes Vera's place. All remaining alternates move up a notch on the list. Anita Rackham is now the top alternate.
The format for the finals has been posted on this Wikipage. Please note that the CC has clarified what would happen in the event of tie games in the finals.
Vince Castellano has withdrawn; his son Joshua is now the first alternate. All other alternates have accordingly moved up one spot as well.
The registration deadline is now closed; congratulations to all those who have qualified. Players may withdraw from the event without penalty until May 10; after that date, barring successful appeal based on a non-preexisting condition, players who choose not to play in the event will forfeit their entry fees. We apologize for the necessity for this strict penalty; it is necessary in order to prepare customized materials for players, and to avoid unfairly favouring local players who do not need to make nonrefundable travel arrangements.
Today is the deadline to submit one's entry fee to John Chew to be put on the list of entrants or alternates for the 2013 CNSC. Payment must be received by the deadline of 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time. The list of 48 qualifiers by peak rating and a supplementary list of alternates will be created sometime on Sunday. - John Robertson, CC Chairman
Based on a discussion John Chew had with Shauna Petrie, the CC agreed that the results of her upcoming Bermuda Cruise tourney (which begins before the CNSC deadline but ends well after it) will not count toward the entrants' peak-rating qualification for the CNSC. - John Robertson, CC Chairman
Congratulations to Andy Saunders, Barbara Bultz, and Sary Karanofsky who finished in the top three spots at the CNSC qualifying tournament on April 27! All three have earned CNSC berths along with defending champion Joel Wapnick. The final 48 berths will be determined by players' peak ratings based on those who have officially registered by the May 4 deadline. - John Robertson, CC Chairman
While sourcing goodies for the event, I realize that there may not be a budget this year for event T-shirts. I've polled a few players, and it looks like there may be enough interest for a small print run of the event logo on a white T-shirt, at a price of $12/shirt. It might be a little less if the print run is larger than I expect. Barring unexpected funding, I'll be asking every player at the end of the QP if they want to pay for an event T-shirt, payment on delivery at the tournament.
As things stand, Shauna Petrie's Bermuda Cruise will substantially delay the finalization of the player roster, as it runs May 2–11, spanning the May 4 end of the qualification period. I have proposed a qualification system rule change to the Canadian Committee and await their feedback.
Looking for a more interactive place to talk about the event? Take a look at our Facebook event page.
In keeping with Hasbro’s tradition of supporting children through philanthropic programs, starting this year $2,000 of the prize fund will be donated in the champion’s name to the Canadian children’s charity of his/her choice. Please be sure to send us your choice of charity as per registration instructions below.
Please note that players should bring their own game boards this year, and will not be required to play on deluxe boards as in past years.
The event is a go, registration is now open, and qualification period dates and deadlines have been adjusted accordingly in the qualification system.

For older items, see 2013 Canadian National SCRABBLE Championship News Archive.

Player Roster

You can follow the registration and qualification process in the qualification standings chart. Players marked with a ‘y’ are paid registrants; those with a dollar sign have informed us that their payment is en route, but will not be considered registered until payment is received and cleared.


Here is an overview of what happens when. Please also see the more detailed full schedule.

Friday, June 21 09:15–18:30 Warmup 2013 Canadian National SCRABBLE Championship Early Bird (optional)
19:00–19:30 Registration
19:30–22:45 Rounds 1–3
Saturday, June 22 09:00–18:45 Rounds 4–11
Sunday, June 23 09:00–17:35 Rounds 12–18
Monday, June 24 09:00–15:00 Finals (best-of-five between top two finalists)
15:30–16:30 Publicity event (to be confirmed, times subject to change)

Please note that everyone is welcome to attend the regular weekly meeting of the Mississauga SCRABBLE® Club on the evening of Thursday, June 20th.

How to Compete

The CNSC is an invitational event for the top 52 players who qualify according to a qualification system (QS) maintained by the NASPA Canadian Committee. As described in the QS, competitors must play a minimum number of games during a qualification period (QP), be Canadian citizens or permanent residents and be members in good standing of NASPA. One place goes to defending champion Joel Wapnick, the next 48 places are awarded based on peak ratings, and three places will be available in a qualifying tournament to be held in Montreal on April 27.

Regardless of how you wish to qualify, you must register by making sure that John Chew receives your $75 entry fee together with your T-shirt size no later than May 4th. You may pay by cash, cheque or INTERAC e-Transfer, but not PayPal or credit card. Cash and cheque payments may be made by mail (9 Fulton Avenue, Toronto ON M4K 1X6) or in person at the Toronto SCRABBLE Club on April 24 or May 1. If you are not sure whether or not you will qualify, please pay by cheque, so that your cheque can be destroyed or returned if you do not qualify.

New this year, because of the donation to the children’s charity, we are asking all contestants to let us know which registered Canadian children's charity you would like Hasbro Canada to donate $2,000 to if you win the championship. If you choose one that someone else has already chosen, we may ask you to choose a backup charity, in case two people with the same favourite charity end up in the finals. (And yes, in accordance with SCRABBLE tradition, the player who went second in the first game would get their first choice of charity.) If you’re not sure what charity you would like to support, Charity Intelligence is a great source of unbiased information. Hasbro Canada is also a regular supporter of the SickKids Foundation and Breakfast Clubs of Canada.

As usual, to participate in the CNSC, you must comply with the CNSC rules, which set out in legal terms the agreement that you are entering into as a participant in the event.

Format of 2013 CNSC Finals

The top two finishers in the preliminary round will earn berths in the best-of-five CNSC finals which will be held on Monday, June 24. The first player to win three games will be declared the CNSC champion for 2013.

The player who finishes first in the preliminary round will go first in games 1, 3, and 5 of the finals. The player who finishes second in the preliminary round will go first in games 2 and 4.

Any tie games will be considered, as is usual tournament competition, a half game won and a half game lost for both players. If each player has 2.5 wins after five games, the player who has the superior point spread in the finals will be declared the winner. If both players have identical points spreads, a sixth game will be played with the player who went first in games 2 and 4 also going first in game 6.

A scheduled lunch break will take place after the third game.

Web Coverage

The championship will receive major event web coverage typical of recent national and international championships, including photography and commentary and live annotated games from Board 1.

When the event begins, please take a look at the live webcast site.


Spectators are invited to attend the finals on Monday, June 24th, where the best-of-five match will be relayed play by play onto a projection screen. Admission is free.

Spectators are also welcome to take a look at the preliminary rounds on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, but space is extremely limited. They should introduce themselves to tournament officials on arrival, and take care not to disturb games in progress.


The $12,150 prize pool donated by Hasbro Canada will be awarded according to the same distribution as at the 2008 CNSC.

1st Place $5,000
Possession of the trophy
$2,000 donation in the winner’s name to the Canadian children’s charity of his/her choice.
2nd Place $2,500
3rd Place $1,000
4th Place $500
5th Place $350
6th Place $250
7th Place $100
8th Place $100
9th Place $100
10th Place $100
High Play $25 (daily)
Best Daily Record $25 (daily)
Michael Wise
Sportsmanship Award


Exterior photo showing Bond Place Hotel at left, east end of Yonge-Dundas Square at right

The Bond Place Hotel is located in downtown Toronto, one block east of Yonge-Dundas Square, the “Heart of the City”, in a popular neighbourhood known for shopping, dining and entertainment. Within a 200-metre radius are such other Toronto landmarks as the Eaton Centre (the largest mall in the region), Massey Hall (a century-old performing arts theatre), the (self-proclaimed) World’s Biggest Bookstore, St. Michael’s Hospital and Ryerson University.

A limited number of rooms are available at $119, per room per night, based on single or double occupancy, not including 13% HST. This rate is available until May 21, 2013 by calling the hotel at 1-800-268-9390 and giving the group name Canadian National SCRABBLE Championship.


The hotel’s guest parking is located catercorner to the hotel on the northeast corner of Bond and Dundas (enter off Bond). Hotel guests are entitled to 24-hour rates with in/out privileges.

In general, parking rates in the area vary according to the day of the week, and whether or not there is a special event (such as a theatre production, or public event at Yonge-Dundas Square) nearby. Most lots have separate maximum rates for day and night parking, but they differ as to when the night rates begin. Some lots are cash only; most accept Visa and Mastercard.

The hotel's parking garage charges: weekdays $13 until 6:00 P.M. and $5 after (best deal if staying day and evening, or just evening), weekends $5 until 5:30 P.M, $3 for 5:30-6:00 P.M. and $5 after.

There is a parking lot on the southeast corner of Bond and Dundas which may be convenient to players who are running late on arrival. Its rates are a little higher than the hotel garage, with weekdays $15 until 6:00, and evening and weekend rates according to market demand.

There is a lot on the west side of Church St. (one block east of Bond), a few buildings north of Dundas, which as of early June had the following rates: weekdays $13 until 4:00 P.M. and $7 after, and weekends $5 until 6:00 P.M. and $5 after (best deal Saturday).

The Ryerson parking garage on the west side of Victoria (one block west of Bond), north of Dundas, has the following rates as of early June: weekdays $15 until 6:00 P.M., $6 from 5:00 P.M. (best Friday evening deal), Saturdays $8 until 6:00 P.M. and $8 after, Sundays $8 all day (best deal Sunday).

If you want to look further afield, don’t go north into Ryerson University, south toward St. Michael’s Hospital or west toward the congestion of Yonge Street; that leaves east into a mostly residential and light commercial area. If you park on street, make sure you pay careful attention to the signage, and are aware of a remote possibility of being ticketed under an unposted time limit of three hours’ parking on city streets unless otherwise signed.

If you’re driving in from the suburbs, please carefully consider the possibility of parking at a suburban subway station and taking the so-called Better Way to Dundas subway station. Don’t do this on Sunday though, when the subway doesn’t start early enough in the morning; that’s when parking rates are cheapest anyway.


Dining area outside the playing room, lower level, Bond Place Hotel

During the main event, breakfast and lunch will be provided to contestants and staff in the lounge. For both the early bird and main event, coffee and tea breaks will be served in the morning and afternoon.

The nearest food courts are in the malls on the other three (NE, NW and SW) corners of Yonge and Dundas. A list of additional restaurant suggestions will be posted here as the event draws nearer.


Hasbro Canada
Sandy Sinclair (Senior VP Marketing),
Marisa Pedatella, Greg Ferguson
Tournament Director
& Web Designer
John Chew
Assistant Director Mad Palazzo
Internet Reporter Sherrie Saint John
Graphic Design
& Event Planning
John Chew
Event Logistics Kristen Chew, Lisa Kessler
Data Entry Gary Sagara
Game Recorder Coordinator Lisa Kessler (tentative assignment)
Game Recorders Alice Ching Chew, Lisa Kessler, Risa Horowitz, Lynda Wise (Saturday), Shelley Ubeika (Saturday), Jim Wallenberg (Saturday, 1:15-5:45), Mad Palazzo (Monday)
Finals Host TBA
As yet unassigned staff Vince Castellano (tentative)


Players should take careful note of what equipment they will be provided, and what equipment they should bring.

Players must bring their own boards, but may if travelling from outside of the greater Toronto area arrange to borrow a local player’s board. If neither player in a scheduled game has a board, both may forfeit their game.
Racks will be provided at this event; players may choose to use their own racks instead.
All players will be given a set of 2013 CNSC Protiles at registration. This year’s Protiles are white, with red print, and are square for international compatibility. Please check their distribution carefully before playing your first game; as per NASPA rules, no changes may be made once a game has begun. Games must be played using CNSC Protiles, but players may bring and play with Protiles from past CNSC events if they wish.
Tile Bags
Sam Kantimathi has kindly donated enough tile bags for each board, with the bags going at the end of the event to the winner of the last game. If you need to transfer tiles between bags, please count the tiles out of the bag onto the board before re-bagging them.
Players are requested to bring their own digital game timers. A limited number of timers will be available on a first-come basis; if neither player in a game can find a clock, both may forfeit the game.
A limited number of standard NASPA scoresheets will be available for player use, as well as plentiful supplies of blank paper.
A limited number of writing implements will be available for player use, but we strongly recommend that players bring their own.

Further Information

If you have questions about the 2013 CNSC that are not answered on this website, please contact CNSC Director John Chew.