Tusculum Gaming Festival on campus in September will provide tournaments and other activities for those who love to play

GREENEVILLE – Those who love gaming and esports will find abundant opportunities to play and have a great time at an upcoming event at Tusculum University.

This is the Tusculum Gaming Festival logo.

The university will host the Tusculum Gaming Festival Saturday, Sept. 16, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. in the classrooms on the lower level of the Thomas J. Garland Library. The chief features will be a 40k Combat Patrol tournament and a 3-on-3 Rocket League tournament, but the event will include other activities that will enable attendees to pursue their interests in gaming and esports.

“We’re excited to present this opportunity to the community and build on the tremendous interest in various types of video games,” said Dr. Nick Davidson, the festival’s co-leader and chair of Tusculum’s Sport Management Department. “Gaming and esports have grown considerably in East Tennessee, and we look forward to showcasing the talents of players. We have designed our event so players at all skill levels can have fun and become even better players with friendly competition.”

The two tournaments cost $10 each, with payment made upon arrival to campus. To register for the tournaments, please visit https://site.tusculum.edu/gaming-festival/.

In addition to playing in the tournaments, the admission fee entitles registrants to visit and play in Tusculum’s gaming and esports labs on the second floor of the Charles Oliver Gray North building on campus. Registrants will also have access to local esports and gaming vendors who will sell items at the festival.

Those who do not want to participate in the tournaments can pay $5 upon arrival and have access to the labs in COG North and the vendors. They are also welcome to watch the players in the tournaments.

In addition, snacks such as pizza and a variety of cakes and candy as well as soft drinks and water, will be available for sale at the library. No food or drinks are permitted in the computer areas.

Payment for entry fees, food and drinks is by cash only. The event is open to people of all ages.

Dr. Nick Davidson, left, and Dr. Harold Branstrator review Rocket League.

Dr. Harold Branstrator, left, and Dr. Nick Davidson stand in Tusculum University’s esports lab.

Tusculum has embraced gaming and esports with the establishment of the COG North labs in 2022. Use of those facilities and the number of players have steadily increased as students have discovered this additional outlet to spend time when they are not studying or in class. The two labs are close to each other, enabling students with a desire to participate in both to easily move from one to the other.

Students play Super Smash Brothers, Madden, FIFA and NBA 2K on consoles in the gaming lab. They primarily play League of Legends and Rocket League on computers in the e-sports lab.

The computers tor the esports lab came through MSI, a computer components company. The National Association of Collegiate Esports helped Tusculum develop the esports room and determine the equipment needed.

“We have enjoyed investing in gaming and esports because it has been so meaningful for our students,” said Dr. Harold Branstrator, the festival’s other co-leader and an associate professor of management at Tusculum. “Now, we are thrilled to share our connection to these forms of entertainment with the community and provide a magnificent day of game-playing. It is going to be tremendous fun, and I encourage people to register themselves and urge others to participate.”

Anyone with questions can email Dr. Davidson at ndavidson@tusculum.edu or Dr. Branstrator at hbranstrator@tusculum.edu. More information about the university is available at www.tusculum.edu.