National Tournament

2020 Nationals Overview

Albuquerque, New Mexico

The National Speech & Debate Tournament will be hosted in Albuquerque, New Mexico, June 14-19, 2020. The Middle School National Tournament will take place June 16-19, 2020. We look forward to hosting you during the largest academic competition in the world!

 
To attend, high school students must qualify at one of the Association’s 111 district tournaments or through one of our eight international qualifying programs. The student competitors represent the best and brightest young people across the United States and the globe.
At the middle school tournament, students have the chance to compete, build their skills, meet other students from across the country, and, as it overlaps with the high school tournament, students can learn from watching high school final rounds in person.
National Tournament registration for high school and middle school opens March 1, 2020. High school and middle school tournament paperwork and fees are due May 1.
Hotel and venue information will be available beginning in January. Accessibility information is available via this guide. Please contact us with any questions.

2020 Tournament Schedule

OVERVIEW OF MIDDLE SCHOOL TOURNAMENT LOGISTICS

Tentative Schedule

TUESDAY • JUNE 16

Middle school registration will be held from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Albuquerque Museum, located in Historic Old Town.

Wednesday • June 17

Middle school competition begins Wednesday at Albuquerque HS. Rounds begin at 8:00 a.m. and last until 7:00 p.m. Time has been built in for lunch.

Thursday • June 18

Middle school competition continues Thursday at Albuquerque HS. Rounds begin at 8:00 a.m. and last until 7:00 p.m. Time has been built in for lunch.

Friday • June 19

Beginning at 8:00 a.m., final rounds of Speech, Congress, and World Schools Debate, as well as semifinal and final rounds of Policy, Lincoln-Douglas, and Public Forum, will be held at the Albuquerque Convention Center. The middle school awards assembly will commence at 4:15 p.m. followed by the high school awards assembly at 6:30 p.m., where the middle school circle of champions will be recognized on the high school stage!

Important Middle School Dates

  • Coaches can register online at MSNats.tabroom.com beginning March 1.
  • Congressional Debate legislation is due April 24.
  • Entries, judges, forms, piece information, and payment are due on May 1. 
  • A late fee of $200 will be assessed for any materials or payment received after May 1. A school risks forfeiting participation if materials are not received by May 8.

Other Details

  • NEW IN 2020
    • Program Oral Interpretation and Informative Speaking will be main events. 
    • Due to a lack of interest, the Middle School National Tournament will not offer supplemental events.
    • Each school is permitted up to 6 entries in each event. There is no waitlist. Coaches will be notified if there is space for additional entries by June 1.
  • Coaches are asked to carefully review all information on the tournament website.
  • Middle schools are required to bring judges for each division in which they have students (Policy, LD, or PF, Speech, Congress, and World Schools) as a condition for registering.

Membership Notice

The Board of Directors affirms the creation, support, and development of speech and debate programs at the middle and secondary levels through accredited public and private schools. All members of the National Speech & Debate Association must be school-based. For any club or organization that does not currently have a school-based membership, the NSDA is eager to work with you to create school-based speech and debate teams. Students who are currently members through their area non-school-based clubs and organizations may request to have their memberships transferred to their accredited public and private schools. Homeschools and virtual schools that are recognized by the state in which those schools compete may join the National Speech & Debate Association.

OVERVIEW OF HIGH SCHOOL TOURNAMENT LOGISTICS

SUNDAY • JUNE 14 (Registration and Expo)

This year, tournament registration and the expo will take place Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Albuquerque Convention Center in downtown Albuquerque, New Mexico. A morning reception for new coaches, a luncheon for district leaders, and a mandatory training session for World Schools Debate judges will also take place on Sunday.

MONDAY AND TUESDAY • JUNE 15-16 (Prelim Rounds/Early Elims/NSDA Student Party)

Seven venues will be used for preliminary competition Monday and Tuesday. All main event preliminary and early elimination competition on Monday and Tuesday will occur between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. High school Congressional Debate will be hosted at the Downtown Hyatt Regency and Albuquerque Convention Center. Sandia HS and Comanche Elementary will host preliminary rounds of Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Public Forum Debate, and Big Questions Debate. Eldorado HS will host preliminary rounds of Policy Debate. Manzano HS will host World Schools Debate competition. Albuquerque HS will host preliminary rounds of Humorous Interp, Dramatic Interp, Duo Interp, and Program Oral Interp. Highland HS will host preliminary rounds of Extemporaneous Speaking, Original Oratory, and Informative Speaking.

The NSDA Student Party, hosted by ISD, will take place Tuesday evening at Historic Old Town from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Coaches of students eliminated from main event competition Tuesday will re-register for Wednesday supplemental events online via Tabroom.com. Provisions for completing supplemental re-registration online will also be made available at the NSDA Student Party.

WEDNESDAY • JUNE 17 (Elim Rounds/Supplemental Events)

Six venues will be used Wednesday. All competition will occur between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Students who qualify for elimination round 9 of all main speech and debate events (including World Schools and Big Questions Debate) will compete at Manzano HS. International Supplemental Public Forum Debate also will occur at Manzano HS. High school Congressional Debate House quarterfinals and Senate semifinals will be held at the Albuquerque Convention Center. Those students re-registered in Extemporaneous Debate will compete at Sandia HS. Those students re-registered for supplemental speech events will compete at Highland HS. Note: Middle school competition begins Wednesday at Albuquerque HS.

THURSDAY • JUNE 18 (Elim Rounds/Supp Events/Interp Finals/Diamond Awards)

Thursday morning, high school main event debate elimination rounds, as well as, Big Questions Debate and International Supplemental Public Forum Debate, will continue at Manzano HS. High school Congressional Debate will hold its Senate final rounds and House semifinal rounds at the Albuquerque Convention Center. All supplemental speech events will occur at Highland HS.  Extemporaneous Debate will occur at Manzano HS. Note: Middle school competition continues at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday at Albuquerque HS.

Thursday afternoon and evening, attendees will enjoy the national final rounds of World Schools Debate, Program Oral Interp, Humorous Interp, Dramatic Interp, and Duo Interp, as well as the Donus D. Roberts Diamond Assembly, at the Albuquerque Convention Center.

FRIDAY • JUNE 19 (Supps/Main Event Finals and National Awards Assembly)

The remaining main event final rounds (Informative Speaking, United States Extemp, International Extemp, Policy Debate, Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Public Forum Debate, and Original Oratory), as well as the Big Questions Debate, supplemental events, and middle school finals, will be held throughout the day on Friday at the Albuquerque Convention Center, culminating with the National Awards Assembly Friday evening.

Hotel, Venue, Transportation Guide

The National Tournament hotel block opens January 15, 2020!

READ FIRST! Important Considerations When Selecting and Reserving Hotels

If your team stays within the National Tournament hotel block, you will receive a $25 discount off the current year’s main event entry fee per student. See our FAQ section below for more information.

Online Booking Site » All coaches must use the online booking site. Please do NOT call the hotels directly to book your hotel rooms. Larger teams requiring ten or more rooms, or those teams wishing to pay by check, should contact the Speech & Debate Housing Bureau (managed by Catch Des Moines). Details can be found on the online booking site. Every hotel requires a credit card on file for incidentals and cancellation fees even if you are paying by check. If you are paying by check, please select “Yes” in the field under “Additional Information” on the “Guest Details” page and someone from the Speech & Debate Housing Bureau will follow up with you. For more information, consult our FAQ section below.

Additional Block Hotels » Morning and afternoon traffic jams will make commuting from non-recommended properties a very difficult task and could result in major issues for your team. In addition, the NSDA only has contracts with those properties listed and will not be able to assist you with issues in hotels outside the block. PLEASE DO NOT STAY OUTSIDE THE NATIONAL TOURNAMENT HOTEL BLOCK.

Important Notes » Many room reservations within the National Tournament hotel block are subject to an automatic non-refundable two-night deposit per room that will be charged on April 22, 2020. The DoubleTree and Hyatt Place Albuquerque Uptown will charge the two-night deposit at the time of booking. This avoids double booking and allows all attendees equal opportunity to book in the best available properties. Check the online booking site for details.

Please note, there is a five night minimum stay at the Hyatt Regency, DoubleTree, Crowne Plaza, and Marriott Albuquerque.

FAQs about the National Tournament Hotel Block

Why should I stay within the National Tournament hotel block?
As the costs in hosting and executing the National Tournament continue to rise, it has become more and more important that all teams at Nationals stay within the established block of hotel rooms. When negotiating contracts to ensure the best possible rates and benefits to the organization and participants, certain guarantees and room pick up history must be provided to each contracting hotel. Staying in the National Tournament block assists in future rate negotiations and provides essential rebate revenue and complimentary room nights that prevent expenses from being passed off to the participating teams.

When does the hotel block open?
The National Tournament hotel block opened Wednesday, January 15, 2020, at 12:00 p.m. CT.

How do I book a room within the hotel block?
To secure the best hotel rates, all coaches must use the online booking system provided by the Speech & Debate House Bureau (managed by Catch Des Moines). The platform is similar to an Orbitz, Travelocity, or other online booking website, and contains all of the hotel properties negotiated by the NSDA. Enter your check in/check out dates, number of rooms, and number of guests to display a list or map view of available hotels matching your search parameters. You may also filter the results by name, price, or distance to find the best property that fits your team’s needs.

Will I save money by staying within the National Tournament hotel block?
Yes! If your team stays within the National Tournament hotel block, you will receive a $25 discount off the current year’s main event entry fee per student.

HIGH SCHOOL ENTRY FEES
(For middle school entry fees, visit MSNats.tabroom.com).

High School Speech, Lincoln-Douglas, or Congress Entry

  • $100 per entry for teams staying OUTSIDE the National Tournament hotel block
  • $75 per entry for teams staying WITHIN the hotel block (save $25 per entry)

High School Policy, Public Forum, or Duo Entry

  • $200 per entry for teams staying OUTSIDE the National Tournament hotel block
  • $150 per entry for teams staying WITHIN the hotel block (save $50 per entry)

High School Big Questions Entry

  • $75 per student for teams staying OUTSIDE the National Tournament hotel block
  • $50 per student for teams staying WITHIN the hotel block (save $25 per student)

High School World Schools Entry

  • $75 per student for teams staying OUTSIDE the National Tournament hotel block
  • $50 per student for teams staying WITHIN the hotel block (save $25 per student)

How do I know what competition venues will be used throughout the week?
See above for a tentative overview of the 2020 Albuquerque Nationals site plan. You can also check out an interactive Google map and other local attractions so you can plan your week’s stay in Albuquerque accordingly! (As a reminder, please do not call the hotels directly. Use the online booking site linked below instead.)

Can I cancel or update my room reservation?
Yes! Using the online booking system, coaches may cancel or update their team’s room reservations without penalty until April 22, 2020. Therefore, you are encouraged to book your rooms as early as possible! This should provide ample time and an even playing field for all teams planning to attend the tournament. (Please note that on April 22, 2020, any room reservations within the block that are subject to an automatic two-night, non-refundable deposit per room will be charged. The DoubleTree and Hyatt Place Albuquerque Uptown will charge the two-night deposit at the time of booking.)

Can I still earn hotel points through the online booking system?
Yes, you will have the option to add your membership number to the online reservation or present it at check-in.

Can I pay my hotel reservation by check?
Those teams wishing to pay by check should contact the Speech & Debate Housing Bureau (managed by Catch Des Moines). Additional information is available via the online booking site.

I need to book ten or more rooms. What should I do?
Larger teams or districts requiring a block of ten or more rooms should contact the Speech & Debate Housing Bureau (managed by Catch Des Moines). Additional information is available via the online booking site.

Reminders

  • Please do NOT call the hotels directly.
  • Guarantee the best hotel rates and keep your tournament entry fees low by visiting the online booking system.

We look forward to hosting you and your team in Albuquerque in June! If you have any questions not answered here, please don’t hesitate to contact the national office at info@speechanddebate.org or (920) 748-6206.

Save money by staying within the National Tournament hotel block! As a reminder, please do NOT call the hotels directly. Guarantee the best hotel rates and keep your tournament entry fees low by visiting the online booking site below.
With thanks to the Speech & Debate Housing Bureau (managed by Catch Des Moines)
Transportation Guide

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Hertz Discount

Hertz is the Association’s official rental car company!
Visit www.hertz.com or call (800) 654-2240. To reserve special meeting rates, please include CV053L0003 when making reservations. At the time of reservation, meeting rates will be automatically compared to other Hertz rates and the best rate will apply. For complete information, download the Hertz flyer.

Visit Hertz Hertz Convention Number: CV053L0003

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Flight Discounts

Receive discounts off your flight when you book online with recommended carriers. Some restrictions may apply.

Visit Delta Delta Meeting Event Code: NMU7R

Visit Southwest Southwest Company ID: 99696096  * Code is effective beginning February 15, 2020.

Visit United United Z Code and Agreement Code: ZJCZ 205557

DELTA: Delta Air Lines is pleased to offer special discounts for the National Speech & Debate Association. Please click here to book your flights! You may also call Delta Meeting Network® at (800) 328-1111* Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. CT and refer to Meeting Event Code NMU7R. *Please note there is not a service fee for reservations booked and ticketed via our reservation 800 number.

UNITED: Visit www.united.com/meetingtravel and enter ZJCZ205557 in the Offer Code box to receive your discount.

SOUTHWEST: Visit www.swabiz.com. Company ID: 99696096.  * Code is effective beginning February 15, 2020.

Fundraising

Is your team hoping to qualify for the National Tournament this year? With Edco, our fundraising partner, you can easily set up an online fundraising page for your team and receive support in the fundraising process. Edco empowers students and teachers to raise money from family, friends, and other members of their community. Be sure to visit Edco’s website or email hello@ed.co for more information.

Future Host Sites

Join Us!

2020 | Albuquerque, New Mexico – June 14-19
2021 | Des Moines, Iowa – June 13-18
2022 | Louisville, Kentucky – June 12-17
2023 | Phoenix, Arizona – June 11-16

The National Association of Secondary School Principals has placed this program on the 2019-2020 NASSP List of Approved Contests, Programs, and Activities for Students.
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