National Tournament

2017 Nationals

Birmingham, Alabama

We are excited to return to Birmingham June 18-23 for the 2017 National Speech & Debate Tournament! To make planning easier, we have provided essential venue, lodging, and transportation information below, as well as a daily schedule overview. Keep in mind that all details are tentative and subject to change. Times are shown in CT.
Week at a Glance
Join Us! June 18-23, 2017
Sunday • June 18 Registration; Expo; New Coach Reception; District Leadership Luncheon; Coach Clinics; World Schools Debate Training; and More!
Monday • June 19 High School Main Event Competition Begins
Tuesday • June 20 Supplemental Re-registration; Student Posting Party (Tuesday evening)
Wednesday • June 21 Middle School Competition Begins; Consolation Re-registration
Thursday • June 22 Finalists’ Sound and Light Check; World Schools Debate Finals; Interp Finals; Donus D. Roberts Diamond Assembly
Friday • June 23 Remaining Finals; National Awards Assembly

Note: All information is tentative and subject to change. Times are shown in CT.

Sunday Schedule Overview

Be sure to plan your travel arrangements so you can attend these events!

7:30 a.m. Early Registration for Tournament Officials
8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. National Tournament Expo
8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Shop the Speech & Debate Store
8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Tournament Registration for ALL Schools
9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. National Tournament Coach Clinics
9:00 a.m. Speech Tab Meeting
9:00 a.m. Debate Tab Meeting
9:00 a.m. Congress Tab Meeting
9:00 a.m. World Schools Debate Tab Meeting
9:00 a.m. Supplemental and Consolation Tab Meeting
9:00 a.m. Extemp Officials Meeting
10:00 a.m. New Coach Reception
11:00 a.m. Mandatory Parliamentarian Meeting
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. LD Wording Committee
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. PF Wording Committee
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. African American/Black Coaches’ Caucus
12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. District Leadership Luncheon and Awards Ceremony
1:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. National Student of the Year Finalists (invitation only)
2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. World Schools Debate Judge Training
2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. World Schools Debate Competitor Training
2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Hispanic/Latinx Coaches’ Caucus
3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. LGBT+ Coaches’ Caucus
3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. World Schools Debate Demo
4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Womxn and Gender Non-conforming Coaches’ Caucus
4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. Late Registration (NOT RECOMMENDED)

Note: All information is tentative and subject to change. Times are shown in CT.

High School Information

Tentative Overview of 2017 High School Tournament Logistics

Note: All information is tentative and subject to change. Times are shown in CT.

SUNDAY • JUNE 18 (Registration and Expo)
This year, tournament registration and the expo will take place Sunday, June 18, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Sheraton Birmingham in downtown Birmingham, AL. The Sheraton Birmingham is the host hotel for the tournament and is located near the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC), where the final rounds and awards assembly will be held. Schools staying in any of the recommended properties will find this extremely convenient.

MONDAY AND TUESDAY • JUNE 19-20 (Prelim Rounds/Early Elims/Student Posting Party)
Seven venues will be used for preliminary competition, June 19-20. 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 Sheraton Birmingham. The Sheraton Birmingham will also host preliminary rounds of Extemporaneous Speaking. Jackson-Olin HS will host preliminary rounds of Lincoln-Douglas Debate and the Big Questions Debates. Carver HS will host preliminary rounds of Public Forum Debate. Mountain Brook HS will host preliminary rounds of Policy Debate. Huffman HS will host preliminary rounds of Humorous, Dramatic, Duo, and Program Oral Interpretation. Woodlawn HS will host preliminary rounds of Original Oratory and Informative Speaking. A. H. Parker HS will host World Schools Debate competition.

The student posting party will take place at Uptown Birmingham, the premier entertainment district at the BJCC, adjacent to the Sheraton and Westin. Students eliminated from main event competition on Tuesday will re-register for Wednesday supplemental events at The Westin Birmingham during the student posting party.

WEDNESDAY • JUNE 21 (Elim Rounds/Supplemental Events)
Five venues will be used on 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) will compete at Carver HS. High school Congressional Debate semifinals will be held at the Sheraton Birmingham. Those students re-registered for supplemental speech events will compete at Jackson-Olin HS. Elimination rounds of Big Questions Debates will be held at Jackson-Olin HS. Those students re-registered in Extemporaneous Debate will compete at A. H. Parker HS. Note: Middle school competition begins Wednesday at Huffman HS.

THURSDAY • JUNE 22 (Elim Rounds/Supp-Cons Events/Interp Finals/Diamond Awards)
Thursday morning, debate elimination rounds will continue at Carver HS. High school Congressional Debate will hold its final round sessions at the Sheraton Birmingham. Extemporaneous Debate will compete at A. H. Parker HS. All supplemental speech and consolation events will occur at Jackson-Olin HS. Elimination rounds of Big Questions Debates will continue at Jackson-Olin HS (if needed). Note: Middle school competition continues at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday at Huffman HS.

On Thursday afternoon through the evening, attendees will enjoy the national final rounds of World Schools Debate, Program Oral Interpretation, Humorous, Dramatic, and Duo Interpretation, as well as the Donus D. Roberts Diamond Assembly, at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC).

FRIDAY • JUNE 23 (Supp-Cons/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 supplemental/consolation event and Big Questions Debates finals, will be held throughout the day on Friday at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC), culminating with the National Awards Assembly Friday evening.

 

High School Registration

Online registration is now open for those districts whose tournament series (debate, speech, and congress) is complete and results are audited by national office staff. Coaches will be notified via email when the registration website is open for their district.

High School Main Debate Schedule

Policy (CX) • Lincoln-Douglas (LD) • Public Forum (PF)

Note: All information is tentative and subject to change. Times are shown in CT.

MONDAY • JUNE 19

Venues: Mountain Brook HS (CX) | Jackson-Olin HS (LD) | Carver HS (PF)

Round 1 9:00 a.m.
Round 2 11:30 a.m.
Round 3 2:00 p.m.
Round 4 4:00 p.m.

TUESDAY • JUNE 20

Venues: Mountain Brook HS (CX) | Jackson-Olin HS (LD) | Carver HS (PF)

Round 5 8:00 a.m.
Round 6 10:00 a.m.
(Teams who win at least 8 prelim ballots will advance to Rounds 7 / 8)
Round 7 2:00 p.m.
Round 8 4:00 p.m.
6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Student Posting Party – Uptown District-Birmingham
6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Supplemental Re-registration – The Westin Birmingham Hotel

WEDNESDAY • JUNE 21

Venue: Carver HS

Round 9 8:00 a.m.
Round 10 11:00 a.m.
Round 11 2:00 p.m.
Round 12 5:00 p.m.
2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Consolation Re-registration – Carver HS Cafeteria
(All competitors eliminated on Wednesday are eligible if pre-registered)

THURSDAY • JUNE 22

Venue: Carver HS

Round 13 8:00 a.m. (CX / LD / PF)
Round 14 10:00 a.m. (LD / PF)
Round 14 11:00 a.m. (CX)
Round 15 12:00 p.m. (LD / PF)
Round 16 1:30 p.m. (LD / PF)
Round 15 2:00 p.m. (CX)
Round 16 5:00 p.m. (CX – if needed)

FRIDAY • JUNE 23

Venue: Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC) Concert Hall

12:30 p.m. CX Final Round
2:30 p.m. LD Final Round
3:30 p.m. PF Final Round
6:30 p.m. National Awards Assembly

High School Main Speech Schedule

USX • IX • OO • INF • HI • DI • DUO • POI

Note: All information is tentative and subject to change. Times are shown in CT.

MONDAY • JUNE 19

Venues: Sheraton/Westin Complex (USX, IX) | Huffman HS (POI, HI, DI, DUO) | Woodlawn HS (INF, OO)

Round 1 9:00 a.m. (Draw at 8:30 a.m.)
Round 2 11:30 a.m. (Draw at 11:00 a.m.)
Round 3 2:00 p.m. (Draw at 1:30 p.m.)
Round 4 4:00 p.m. (Draw at 3:30 p.m.)

TUESDAY • JUNE 20

Venues: Sheraton/Westin Complex (USX, IX) | Huffman HS (POI, HI, DI, DUO) | Woodlawn HS (INF, OO)

Round 5 8:30 a.m. (Draw at 8:00 a.m.)
Round 6 10:30 a.m. (Draw at 10:00 a.m.)
(The top 60 competitors in each event after prelims will advance to Rounds 7 / 8)
Round 7 2:00 p.m. (Draw at 1:30 p.m.)
Round 8 4:00 p.m. (Draw at 3:30 p.m.)
6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Student Posting Party – Uptown District-Birmingham
6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Supplemental Re-registration – The Westin Birmingham Hotel

WEDNESDAY • JUNE 21

Venue: Carver HS

Round 9 8:30 a.m. (Draw at 8:00 a.m.)
Round 10 10:30 a.m. (Draw at 10:00 a.m.)
Round 11 1:30 p.m. (Draw at 1:00 p.m.)
Round 12 4:00 p.m. (Draw at 3:30 p.m.)
2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Consolation Re-registration – Carver HS Cafeteria
(All competitors eliminated on Wednesday are eligible if pre-registered)

THURSDAY • JUNE 22

Venue: Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC) Concert Hall

10:00 a.m. Finalists’ Sound and Light Check (All Speech Events)
1:00 p.m. WSD Final Round
2:30 p.m. POI Final Round
4:00 p.m. HI Final Round
5:30 p.m. DI Final Round
7:00 p.m. Donus D. Roberts Diamond Assembly
8:30 p.m. DUO Final Round

Note: All speech finalists (USX, IX, OO, INF, HI, DI, DUO, POI) must attend the National Speech Finalists’ Sound and Light Check in the BJCC Concert Hall at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday. ALL STUDENTS MUST BE IN COMPETITION ATTIRE.

FRIDAY • JUNE 23

Venue: Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC) Concert Hall

8:00 a.m. INF Final Round
9:30 a.m. USX Final Round
11:00 a.m. IX Final Round
5:00 p.m. OO Final Round
6:30 p.m. National Awards Assembly

USA World Schools Debate Invitational - U.S. District Teams

Tentative Overview of 2017 USA World Schools Debate Invitational Logistics

Note: All information is tentative and subject to change. More details coming soon!

For additional information about debate rules, procedures, and protocols, download the USA World Schools Debate Invitational Manual.

Entries

  • World Schools teams are comprised of three to five students. The cost of entry is $50 per student.
  • Each NSDA district may enter up to two teams to the National Tournament, provided they offer a second judge to cover the commitment for the second team. Districts that do not provide a full-­time judge for each team will not be permitted to enter.
  • Students must attend an NSDA district qualifying event to be eligible for selection to their district’s team.
  • Students who attend the district tournament and qualify in a main event for the 2017 National Tournament may forgo their qualification and participate in World Schools Debate instead, if they are selected for the team by their district and have preferred it on the Single Entry Letter of Intent prior to the District Tournament Series. Refer to the Single Entry Letter of Intent regarding preferences in partnership events.
  • Guest nations may enter teams, as well. Visit our website for more details.

Judges

  • Each district must provide a full-­time judge for each team available for the entirety of the competition. The judge may not be entered into any other judging pool at the National Speech & Debate Tournament.
  • There are no hired judges available.
  • Judges must attend judge training on Sunday!

Motions

  • There will be a mix of prepared and impromptu motions for the competition.
  • Prepared motions will be announced by May 1, 2017.

Schedule Overview

  • Sunday – Judge and Competitor Training; Demo Debate (Sheraton/Westin Complex)
  • Monday – Preliminary Rounds (4) (Parker HS)
  • Tuesday – Preliminary Rounds (2) and Double-Octafinals (Parker HS)
  • Wednesday – Octafinals/Quarterfinals/Semifinals (Carver HS)
  • Thursday – Final Round (BJCC Concert Hall)

Supplemental and Consolation Events

  • Teams who are eliminated from competition on Tuesday are eligible to enter in supplemental events if pre-registered. Teams must re-register during the local host posting party Tuesday evening.
  • Teams who do not advance to Thursday’s rounds may enter in consolation events if pre-registered. Teams must re-register Wednesday evening.

USA World Schools Debate Invitational - International Teams

Application Instructions for International Teams

Teams from across the globe are invited to apply to compete at the USA World Schools Debate Invitational. There are a limited number of international team slots available, and preference will be given to teams recognized by the WSDC. (NOTE: U.S. teams may NOT apply for an international slot. See above for details on how to apply as a U.S. District Team.)

To apply, you must request an invitation by April 28, 2017. To request an invitation, please email director@speechanddebate.org with your country name and the email contact information of your team manager.

Big Questions Capstone Event Logistics

Tentative Overview of 2017 Big Questions Capstone Event Logistics

For additional information about debate rules and access to resources and judge training, visit the Big Questions website.

Students

  • Students will debate the 2016-2017 topic, Resolved: Science leaves no room for free will.
  • Only entries composed of individual debaters may compete at Nationals. The cost of entry is $50 per student.
  • Students must attend the topic discussion on Monday at 9:00 a.m. at Jackson-Olin High School.
  • Students can access topic resources on the Resources page.

Judges

  • Each district must provide a full-­time judge for each entry available for the entirety of the competition. Aside from supplemental and consolation events, the judge may not be entered into any other judging pool at the National Speech & Debate Tournament.
  • There are no hired judges available.
  • Judges must attend judge training on Monday at 9:00 a.m. at Jackson-Olin High School.

Schedule

Preliminary and rounds will be held at Jackson-Olin High School. Elimination rounds will be held at Carver High School. The final round will be held in the BJCC Theatre.

Monday (Jackson-Olin High School)

  • 9:00 a.m. Judge training for all Big Questions judges
  • 9:00 a.m. Student topic discussion for all Big Questions students
  • 11:30 a.m. Round 1
  • 2:00 p.m. Round 2
  • 4:00 p.m. Round 3

Tuesday (Jackson-Olin High School)

  • 8:00 a.m. Round 4
  • 10:00 a.m. Round 5
  • 2:00 p.m. Round 6
  • Postings will be released at the student party at 6:00 p.m. in the Uptown District

Wednesday (double elimination at Carver High School)

  • 10:30 a.m. Round 7
  • 1:00 p.m. Round 8
  • 4:00 p.m. Round 9

Thursday (double elimination at Carver High School)

  • 9:00 a.m. Round 10
  • 11:30 a.m. Round 11
  • 2:30 p.m. Round 12
  • 4:30 p.m. Round 13 (if needed)

Friday

  • 2:30 p.m. Final Round (BJCC Theatre)

Supplemental and Consolation Events

  • Students who are eliminated from competition on Tuesday are eligible to enter in supplemental events if pre-registered. Students must re-register during the student posting party Tuesday evening.
  • Teams who do not advance to Thursday’s rounds may enter in consolation events if pre-registered. Teams must re-register Wednesday evening.

Middle School Information

Tentative Overview of 2017 Middle School Tournament Logistics

Note: All information is tentative and subject to change. Times are shown in CT.

 

Schedule Overview

TUESDAY • JUNE 20
Registration will be held from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Sheraton Birmingham.

WEDNESDAY • JUNE 21
Middle school competition begins Wednesday at Huffman HS. Rounds begin at 8:00 a.m. and last until 6:00 p.m. Time has been built in for lunch.

THURSDAY • JUNE 22
Middle school competition continues Thursday at Huffman HS. Rounds begin at 8:00 a.m. and last until 7:00 p.m. Time has been built in for lunch.

FRIDAY • JUNE 23
Starting at 8:00 a.m., final rounds of Speech, Policy, and Congress, as well as semifinal and final rounds of Lincoln-Douglas and Public Forum, will be held at the Sheraton Birmingham and Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC). The middle school awards assembly will commence at 4:00 p.m. in the BJCC Theatre, followed by the high school awards assembly at 6:30 p.m., where middle school champions will be recognized on stage in the BJCC Concert Hall.

Important Middle School Dates

  • Coaches can register online starting February 15.
  • Entries are due April 24. All entries will be placed on a waitlist. Entries will be taken off the waitlist once payment has been received (space permitted, up to five). Additional entries will remain on the waitlist until the payment deadline of May 12. Entries will be taken off the waitlist based upon the payment date and not the registration date.
  • Congressional Debate legislation is due April 24.
  • Title, author, and ISBN information for Interpretation events must be posted on the registration website by May 1.
  • Media release forms, signed by each student’s parent/guardian, must be submitted by May 12.
  • All fees, including judge bond, must be received in the national office by May 12.
  • A late fee of $200 will be assessed for fees and forms received after May 12. A school risks forfeiting participation if fees and media release forms are not received by May 19.

Other Details

  • Coaches are asked to carefully review all information on the tournament website.
  • Please note that each school is limited to five entries per event. A team may place an additional three entries in the system to try and secure additional spots. The first five slots are first come, first served, based upon the date that payment is received. Any slots beyond the five will not be available until after the payment deadline of May 12.
  • We will continue to rigorously train high school student judges. Middle schools are required to bring judges for each division in which they have students (Policy, LD, or PF, Speech, and Congress) as a condition for registering.

Patterns for Speech Events

Pattern A: Duo Interpretation, Humorous Interpretation, Impromptu Speaking, Original Oratory, and Prose
Pattern B: Declamation, Dramatic Interpretation, Extemporaneous Speaking, Poetry, and Storytelling

Note: Debate entries (LD, PF, Policy, Congress) may not enter in speech. In speech events (except Extemp), students can enter two events per pattern (A or B).

Policy Debate Case Limits

The 2017 Middle School National Speech & Debate Tournament will institute case limits for Policy Debate. All teams participating must adhere to these limits to avoid forfeiture:

  • Space Cooperation
  • Bilateral Investment Treaty
  • Taiwan Grand Bargain
  • Climate
  • AIIB (Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank)

Entry Fees

  • Each debate event is $25 per student. (A partner event would equal $50.)
  • For each speech event a student enters, the fee is $20 per event. (e.g., If entered in four events, it would be $80 total for the student).

Judging Requirements By Event Group

Note: Schools that do not provide these judges may not be allowed to have contestants in those divisions. At a minimum, they will forfeit their judge bond ($200), in addition to the judging fees that would apply. Schools must pay a $160 fee for each uncovered judge as per requirements below.

  • Policy Debate: For every 2 teams or fraction thereof – at least one judge must be provided by the school
  • Lincoln-Douglas Debate: For every 3 entries or fraction thereof – at least one judge must be provided by the school
  • Public Forum Debate: For every 3 teams or fraction thereof – at least one judge must be provided by the school
  • Speech: For every 5 entries or fraction thereof – at least one judge must be provided by the school
  • Congress: 1 per school – at least one judge must be provided by the school, who may also serve as a Policy, PF, or LD judge

In addition:

  • You may not register high school students who are entered in the High School National Tournament to judge.
  • If a school brings high school students to judge, they must have been juniors or seniors with at least 250 Honor Society points in the last academic year. No underclassmen or upperclassmen without 250 Honor Society points will be permitted to judge. A rising junior does not meet this criteria.

For more information, please consult the Middle School Unified Manual (updated April 18, 2017).

Please Read Before Selecting Lodging!

  • Middle school coaches should review all information relative to lodging in the Hotel Guide. Be sure to mention the “National Speech & Debate Association and/or National Forensic League block” when booking rooms, and only book with recommended hotels for the reasons listed.
  • The host hotel, Sheraton Birmingham, requires a minimum five-night stay. Middle school programs needing reservations of less than five days must book at properties other than the Sheraton. Middle school teams are encouraged to stay in airport hotel properties as they are closest to Huffman HS.
  • All room reservations within the block are subject to an automatic non-refundable two-night deposit per room at the time of booking or upon cancellation, depending on the property. This avoids double booking and allows all attendees equal opportunity to book in the best available properties.

Important Notice

The 2016 Salt Lake City Nationals was the last time a club or non-school member could enter the Middle School National Tournament. 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. Beginning with the 2016-2017 school year, all members of the Association must be school-based. For any club or organization that does not currently have a school-based membership, the Association is eager to work with you to create school based speech and debate teams. Students who are currently Association 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.

Middle School Registration

Countdown to #Nats17!

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Hotel, Venue, Transportation Guide

We look forward to welcoming you to Birmingham in June!

Hotel Guide

Important Considerations When Selecting and Reserving Hotels

Please read before selecting lodging!

1. All schools should stay at one of the Association recommended hotels in downtown Birmingham or the surrounding areas. The lowest rates have been negotiated for our members. Please do not stay outside the block. The large volume of room sales within the block allows the Association to continue to negotiate the most affordable rate list. Properties that do not appear on this list are likely inconvenient for participation in the tournament, including lack of safety, amenities, and proximity to restaurants and are providing no benefit to the overall cost of the tournament. Morning and afternoon traffic could add substantial time to your commute if you are located outside the block. In addition, hotels not on the list have no contractual obligation to the Association, and therefore, we cannot provide any level of reservation protection at these properties. Middle school teams are encouraged to stay in airport hotel properties as they are closest to Huffman HS.

2. When calling hotels, all coaches must mention the “National Speech & Debate Association and/or National Forensic League block” to receive the posted rate. All room reservations within the block are subject to an automatic two-night, non-refundable deposit per room at the time of booking. This avoids double booking and allows all attendees equal opportunity to book in the best available properties.

3. All hotel properties on the Association’s list are easily accessible and are within 15-20 minutes by interstate or surface streets of competition venues. The tournament website will have a link to an interactive Google map of every hotel including the Sheraton Birmingham, the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC), Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport, and all competition sites. You can print all needed maps before ever leaving home.

4. The high school Congressional Debate headquarters is the Sheraton Birmingham located in downtown Birmingham. All Congressional Debate rounds and the PRELIMS of Extemporaneous Speaking will occur at the Sheraton complex. It is recommended that high school teams with Congressional debaters and/or extempers stay at the Sheraton Birmingham or at one of the downtown properties to avoid substantial rush hour traffic issues. These hotels are an excellent choice in both price and feature.

5. It is recommended that all coaches visit the individual websites of the hotels to determine which property fits the needs of their program. All hotels on the list are conveniently located to various aspects of the tournament. The Sheraton Birmingham and The Westin Birmingham are the most conveniently located hotels for access to the high school Congressional Debate competition, registration, final rounds, and the National Awards Assembly. Schools are encouraged to book early as hotel blocks will fill up quickly.

6. Key Travel Times to Note:
a. Sheraton and other downtown hotels to Schools (less than 20-minute drive)
b. Sheraton and other downtown hotels to Congressional Debate and Finals (less than five-minute walk)
c. All other Hotels to Schools (less than 20-minute drive)
d. All other Hotels to Congressional Debate and Finals (less than 20-minute drive)

7. PLEASE LOOK AT A MAP! Before reserving rooms, all coaches should consult a map of the Birmingham area to get a better perspective on travel logistics. The key to a less stressful week is to consider following the above lodging suggestions provided by the national office.

View Hotels

Venue Guide and Map

Check out our interactive Google map for an overview of the 2017 Birmingham Nationals site plan! You can view hotel and venue addresses or find out which events will be held in each building by clicking on each icon. (Note: All information is tentative and subject to change.)

Note: For those teams competing in World Schools Debate or Extemporaneous Debate, when using GPS, please search for “A. H. Parker HS” to ensure proper directions. The correct address is 400 Reverend Abraham Woods Jr Blvd, Birmingham, AL, 35204.

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 CV022Q8414 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: CV022Q8414

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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: NMPVR

Visit United United Offer Code: ZY6D 622499

UNITED: U.S. 50 States and Canada Customers: call your professional travel agency, book online via www.united.com, or call United Reservations Meetings Desk at (800) 426-1122 and provide the Z Code ZY6D and Agreement Code 622499. For all tickets issued through United Meetings Reservations Desk, there will be a booking service fee per ticket collected. This fee is subject to change without notice. Such service fee is nonrefundable and applies to all itineraries, one-way or round-trip.

Accessibility Guide

Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about accessibility at the National Tournament.

Q | Where can I rent handicap accessible vans for my team?
A  | MobilityWorks of Birmingham has handicap accessible vans for rent. Van rentals start at $129 per day with limited delivery options for an additional fee. | Phone: (205) 426-8261 | Website: www.mobilityworks.com/mobilityworks-locations/birmingham-al.php

Q | Where can I rent a wheelchair or scooter for myself or a student for the week?
A  | Elrod Mobility services the greater Birmingham area. Wheelchair rentals start at $60 per week. Scooter rentals start at $200 per week. Both require a minimum 30-day advance notice. Delivery is possible for a $25 fee, although please be sure to alert your hotel about the delivery ahead of time. | Phone: (205) 823-8181 | Website: http://myelrodmobility.com

Q | What are the best options for public transportation with a wheelchair?

A  | According to the Birmingham Jefferson County Transit Authority website, “All BJCTA buses meet the American with DIsabilities Act (ADA) requirements, offering wheelchair lifts and other features to accommodate riders with disabilities.” For more information, visit
www.bjcta.org/riding-on-max/accessibility-info.

Q | Are all venues handicap accessible?
A  | Yes, all competition sites are handicap accessible, and tournament officials will have access to elevator keys. Also, some of the schools will only have one floor of competition rooms.

Q | Does the Sheraton Birmingham have valet parking?
A  | Yes, valet parking is available for $22. The cost for self-parking is $12.

Q | Which hotels have disabled access rooms available?
A  | If you or one of your students/judges need disabled access rooms, all of the hotels should have them available, but you must proactively reserve those rooms early on. For your students or judges, it also may be important to discuss in advance their needs and specify if you need a tub or a roll-in shower room.

Q | Where can I find information on accessible tourist venues and answers to other specific questions?

A  | The Birmingham Independent Living Center has a robust set of resources available on their website and may be a useful tool. Visit http://drradvocates.org to learn more.

Compiled by Jan Friedman-Pizzo, Butte Falls Charter School, Oregon

Fundraising

Did you 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 hello.ed.co/NSDA or email hello@ed.co for more information.

Coach Clinics

Attend our FREE education sessions at Nationals to learn more about starting a program, adding speech and debate to your curriculum, competitive coaching strategies, and more! Coaches can attend clinics between their judging obligations. However, all judging obligations MUST be met. Attending clinics will not excuse judging obligations.

More details coming soon!

Tournament Sponsors

Our generous sponsors make the National Speech & Debate Tournament possible! Thank you for showing your commitment to fostering excellence in young people through speech and debate activities.

JAMES M. COPELAND

TOM ROLLINS

A. C. ELEY FUND

CARMENDALE FERNANDES FUND

MIKE & GILLIAN GOODRICH FOUNDATION

THE JEPS FOUNDATION

HAROLD C. KELLER FUND

HARLAND B. MITCHELL FUND

LANNY D. AND B. J. NAEGELIN FUND

DONUS AND LOVILA ROBERTS

SANDRA SILVERS FUND

RICHARD B. SODIKOW FUND

BOB AND SALLI STOCKTON

WILLIAM WOODS TATE, JR., FUND

JOE AND PAM WYCOFF

Nationals History

The National Debate & Speech Tournament has been held across the country since 1931, and today is the largest academic competition in the world. Each year, more than 3,500 high school students compete in a week-long competition to determine the most prestigious title in high school academics: national champion.

Advertising

Every year, more than 7,000 students, coaches, teachers, parents, and supporters from across the country attend the National Tournament. The student competitors represent the best and brightest young people across the United States and the globe. You don’t want to miss this unique educational event to reach an outstanding group of young people and their supporters.

Please contact Emily Kriegel at emily.kriegel@speechanddebate.org or (920) 748-6206 with any specific questions you may have.

National Tournament Expo

The National Tournament Expo provides a safe and organized environment in which exhibitors and supporters may connect with coaches, parents, and students. Be sure to reserve your spot by May 31, 2017!

Package Discounts

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À La Carte Pricing

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Expo Guidelines
Reservations

Exhibitors may request any available table range by marking their request on the Expo Registration Form. While the National Speech & Debate Association will attempt to accommodate requests, final placement will be at the discretion of national office staff.

The Sunday Expo will be held concurrent with high school registration. Set-up will begin at 7:15 a.m. on Sunday. Exhibitors who have not arrived by 8:30 a.m. may forfeit their table. Refunds will not be given for failure to attend. Exhibitors must remain open until 3:00 p.m. on Sunday to be invited back to the Expo the following year. Exhibitors may choose to reserve additional tables at the Sunday Expo, or during the competition week. Venues are tentative and subject to change.

A reservation is considered complete once an Expo Registration Form has been submitted to the national office and payment has been received by or before May 31, 2017. All payments are non-refundable.

Discounts

National Tournament Expo vendors who also exhibit at the Conference Expo (August 24-27, 2017) can receive Early Bird Pricing (a $50 savings) to attend NSDA National Conference sessions and receive 20% off their Conference Expo purchase. Please contact Emily Kriegel for details!

Equipment

Reserved exhibition space includes one six-foot or eight-foot table, depending on the location and availability of tables. Additional tables may be reserved for an additional fee. More elaborate set-ups may require an additional charge. Please bring power strips if needed to be sure you are able to access electricity. Electrical access is an additional $100 fee and includes one outlet Sunday, Tuesday evening, Thursday, and/or Friday. Access to electricity is not guaranteed at the school sites Monday through Wednesday. The Association will not provide power strips, power cords, or any other electronic equipment. Internet access is free with limited bandwidth, but you are able to purchase it through the location. The Association cannot store any items for vendors prior to, during, or after the Expo.

Expectations

These guidelines will govern all vending at the 2017 National Speech & Debate Tournament. They replace all guidelines from previous National Tournaments. The Association retains the right to amend its guidelines as needed.

The only exhibitors allowed to vend at National Tournament sites will be those who have reserved exhibition space through the Association. Non-approved exhibitors will be removed from tournament premises. Please note that while exhibitors are usually allowed to vend at the tournament venue, local rules may prohibit vending in certain areas.

All fees must be paid prior to the start of the Expo. Exhibitors with unpaid fees will not be permitted to attend.

Noise/visual elements from booths must not affect the presentation of other exhibitors.

Exhibitors must not impede the operation of the National Tournament or exhibit where local rules do not permit selling of products.

Only the Association or its local hosts may sell t-shirts. No other vendor may sell t-shirts of any kind. Sale of other products sold by the local host committee is also prohibited, including lanyards, nylon drawstring bags, magnets, plastic drinking cups, buttons, and pens.

Exhibitors must remain open until 3:00 p.m. local time on Sunday to be invited back to the Expo the following year. The National Tournament Expo officially closes at 4:00 p.m. local time.

Exhibitors must take all materials, including trash, with them at the conclusion of their vending period. A maintenance fee may be assessed if an exhibitor’s area is left disorderly or damaged.

Vendors are expected to remain within the vending area and not disrupt any competitor or coach in the course of their preparation for or during the actual competitions.

The Association reserves the right to refuse reservations to any exhibitor.

NOTE: Submitting an Expo Registration Form indicates your knowledge, understanding, and acceptance of the National Tournament Expo Guidelines. If you do not agree to the guidelines, do not submit an Expo Registration Form.

Tournament Book

Our National Tournament Program Book is a great way to connect with all student competitors, coaches, teachers, parents, and chaperones at the tournament.

Everyone attending the National Tournament receives a free copy of the Tournament Book, and it is also published online. The Tournament Book is the go-to guide throughout the week. It includes schedules, event information, announcements, annual award listings, and more. You can be a part of the Tournament Book for a low price! The ad deadline is May 1, 2017.

Tournament Book Pricing and Dimensions
Tournament Book Guidelines
Payment

You can pay by credit card using our online form, or we will invoice advertisers as reservations are received. Ad payments must be made by the deadline specified on the invoice.

Deadline

All ads must be submitted by May 1, 2017. (If you need help designing your ad, we can do it for you! Just make sure to provide instructions in the advertising form by or before May 1 to give us plenty of lead time.)

Format

All ad files must be in high-resolution PDF format.

Proofread

Don’t forget to double-check your ad before submitting! Remember, “Lincoln-Douglas” should be hyphenated, but “LD” should not. “Student Congress” is now called “Congressional Debate.”

 

Note: If you’re a vendor and plan to reserve a table at the National Tournament Expo, you may purchase your Tournament Book ads using our Expo Registration Form. No need to fill out a separate form!

Future Host Sites

Join Us!

2017 | Birmingham, Alabama – June 18-23
2018 | Fort Lauderdale, Florida – June 17-22
2019 | Dallas, Texas – June 16-21
2020 | Albuquerque, New Mexico – June 14-19

The National Association of Secondary School Principals has placed this program on the 2016-17 NASSP List of Approved Contests, Programs, and Activities for Students.

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