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FILE - In this July 28, 2018 file photo, Philadelphia Fusion fans react as the London Spitfire takes the lead during the Overwatch League Grand Finals competition at Barclays Center in the Brooklyn borough of New York. Most professional esports are devoid of female players at their highest levels, even though 45 percent of U.S. gamers are women or girls. Executives for titles like League of Legends and Overwatch say they are eager to add women to pro rosters, but many female gamers say they’re discouraged from chasing such careers by toxic behavior and other barriers. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)
FILE - In this July 28, 2018 file photo, Philadelphia Fusion fans react as the London Spitfire takes the lead during the Overwatch League Grand Finals competition at Barclays Center in the Brooklyn borough of New York. Most professional esports are devoid of female players at their highest levels, even though 45 percent of U.S. gamers are women or girls. Executives for titles like League of Legends and Overwatch say they are eager to add women to pro rosters, but many female gamers say they’re discouraged from chasing such careers by toxic behavior and other barriers. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)|Associated Press
Esports

A.C. CRDA invests $700K in eSports, Ocean builds The Den and more

eSports Travel Summit also set for A.C. in June

Robert Mims

Robert Mims

The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority or CRDA is investing money in eSports events in Atlantic City. They have $700,000 to sponsor tournaments to spur tourism and visitation. "This may be the future of spectator sports,” said CRDA Director Matthew Doherty. The events will be held at the Atlantic City Convention Center and Boardwalk Hall. The period the events will cover is the next 18 months.

Ocean Resort Hotel Casino is looking to capture the attention of millennials with the opening of the Den, an area dedicated to eSports that is located on the hotel's mezzanine level next to Ovation Hall. The Den measures 5,600 square feet and features PCs, arcades games and billiards. Ocean wants to market itself as the premiere casino destination for eSports on the east coast. This strategy will make Ocean appealing to the 21 to 35-year-old demographic.

The eSports Travel Summit announced that a two-day event will take place in June. It will be hosted by Meet AC and the Atlantic City Sports Commission. This event will also have the support of INGAME and the CRDA. This summit will facilitate collaborations between eSports organizations as well as the tourism and hospitality industry. Any operator who wants to understand eSports and build a relationship in AC should contemplate attending.