I've just got back from the ACT Junior Chess League Primary Allegro Tournament. This tournament was open to all kids in Grades K-6 in the ACT and surrounding regions. This has always been a popular tournament in the ACT Junior Chess calendar but this years event set a new record with over 130 players. Such was the crowd they had to divide it into 2 sections, with a K-3 tournament, and a 4-6 tournament.
The other interesting thing about this event is the prize structure. Instead of trophies/medals for 1st, 2nd, 3rd etc there is a prize for best Grade 6 Boy, Grade 6 Girl, Grade 5 Boy etc So even if you have the best score but are only in Grade 5, you would win the Grade 5 medal, rather than the Grade 6 one.
My duties mainly involved answering the "Is this checkmate?" questions that are usual at all junior events, and explaining the meaning of "Stalemate" to some bewildered children. Between this event and a couple of ACT Schools events in the last couple of weeks I've probably added another 50 or so stalemate positions to my already large collection.
One non-stalemate game that did interest me occurred in the first round of the K-3 tournament. Both sides played pretty sensible chess until White popped a queen, and Black was just clearly winning. Having wandered off to deal with some other games I looked back to see the players shaking hands. I assumed that White had resigned (in itself unusual at a primary school tournament), and was astonished to see the following (as far I as could remember) position on the board!