Zompetti, Joseph Perry jpzompe
Fri Sep 7 15:34:57 CDT 2007

Just a quick thought....if Northwestern would like to move to a warmer weekend, then perhaps a Georgia State/Northwestern swap would make the most sense.  Both are national tournaments - yet it makes more sense to go to Atlanta in February than in September, and vice versa for Evanston.
I'll leave it to Duck and Bellon to discuss the possibility....


From: edebate-bounces at www.ndtceda.com on behalf of Scott Deatherage
Sent: Fri 9/7/2007 9:10 AM
To: edebate at ndtceda.com

Greetings from Austin and Evanston.  Joel and the Duck here writing in joint communique.  We hope this note finds you well and that your start of the year preparations are proceeding with appropriate speed and intellectual reward.  

We are writing jointly to lay out our joint plans for hosting college tournaments this February and beyond.  While not all is set in stone, we have discussed in some detail a plan that we hope will carry our hosting plans through the 2009 calender year, perhaps beyond.  In short, both the University of Texas and Northwestern University are committed to providing high quality tournament competition to the college community.  We very much hope that the schedule we have worked out is attractive to your school's travel schedule, and that you will join us in Austin and Evanston in the near future and beyond.  Specifically:

Joel and his staff and students plan to host a major event in Austin in February of 2008, on or about the dates that Northwestern has occupied for many years.  Details will follow soon, but Joel's goal, with Duck's blessing, is to host a high quality event in shortly in advance of the 2008 deadline for First Round At-Large applications for the NDT.  As the Texas crew demonstrated in 2006 when they "covered" for Northwestern prior to the Evanston NDT, the Longhorns are well equipped to host a top-notch event in a (hopefully) warm and inviting setting.  

In 2009, the February event will return to Evanston.  The event will mark the 50th Anniversary of the Owen L. Coon tournament, and will celebrate the Grand Re-Opening and Re-Dedication of the to be remodeled Hardy House.  The old House is due for a much needed gut rehab, and we look forward to inviting you to our new digs.  Of the February '08 and February '09 calenders, Joel and Duck are in agreement.  Should you wish to join us in Austin and Evanston (and we hope you do), feel free to plan accordingly.

This schedule contemplates two longer term objectives.  For starters, Joel is considering a bid to host the 2009 National Debate Tournament.  Hosting the 2008 February tournament would help facilitate that goal both by giving Texas and the college debate community a test drive with a potential hotel, and by giving Joel and his team another practice run at hosting a tournament of that magnitude.  As they clearly demonstrated in 2006, the Longhorns are both eager and well suited to hosting a major event.  But Joel is wanting of a second trial before taking on the NDT.

TO BE CLEAR:  Texas is CONSIDERING a bid to host the NDT.  They have neither submitted such a proposal, nor are all the parts presently in place to guarantee that such a bid is forthcoming.  And, of course, the attractiveness of such a proposal is ultimately the purview of the NDT Board of Trustees and NDT Committee.  That said, most people consider Austin to be a beautiful city with inviting restaurant and entertainment options, and the UT campus has proven itself to be accessible and well suited for a college tournament.  Various logistics need to be worked out before Texas can bid on the tournament, but Joel is willing and actively investigating the possibility.  Hence the rational for the 2008 switch with Northwestern.

In 2009, should in fact the NDT land in Austin, the, albeit cold, the February tournament makes sense in Evanston.  Northwestern enjoys hosting, is committed to continuing a major event, and is well suited to "cover" in advance of a potential Austin NDT.  For planning purposes, the Duck will set into motion the steps required for a February '09 tournament, status of a potential UT NDT notwithstanding.

And what after February (and, knock on wood, hopefully March) of '09???  

Many of you have, as part of a broader movement to make the tournament calender a little more quality of life friendly, pressed Northwestern to find a warm weather weekend on which to host a major event.  As a concept, this is a notion the Duck and the Northwestern debate family fully endorses.  Like many things, the devil remains in the details.  A couple of factors complicate such a move.  For starters, warm weather dates in Chicago/Evanston really run from about April 1 to October 31, roughly speaking.  So in debate calender terms, the options are limited, and many of the warm weather weekends are presently occupied on the tournament calender.  Second, affordable hotel rates in September and October are difficult to find.  That's not a deal killer:  Duck has done some investigation, and there are options, they are simply fewer in number than is the case in February.  

So what happens beyond February/March of '09 depends on the aforementioned factors.  Were an attractive fall date to open up, and appropriate hotel rates to be available, Northwestern would seriously consider moving to such a date.  If not, Northwestern would return to its historical February weekend come 2010, a stipulation Joel offered in the present discussions.  That said, Duck is very seriously committed to join the "quality of life friendly" movement and working to make alternative weekends work.  

So it will be a year or so before we can say exactly what our plans will be in the 2009-10 academic year.  But for now: 

*	We hope you will join the Longhorns in Austin in February of 2008 
*	Ditto, please join the Wildcats of Northwestern in Evanston, February of 2009 
*	And (this one comes from the Duck), all of you will encourage Joel to offer a bid to host the '09 NDT and lobby the NDT Board and NDT Committee to endorse such a bid!!! 
*	Beyond that, any suggestions you have for the Duck for warm weather dates are welcome!!! 

Best, all.  Joel and Duck. 

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