We recently covered Harrisburg University's esports program announcement, which also mentioned some critical sponsorships on the horizon. At a press conference earlier today, the university doubled down on collegiate esports by forging a partnership with the Whitaker Center to create a true spectator experience for fans to experience in person.
The presentation, hosted by Kevin Knocke of ReKTGlobal and attended by many of the power players in this new initiative, ushered in a new era for Harrisburg University and the city of Harrisburg at large. Not only will the partnership create practice spaces and locker rooms for the esports teams at HU, it will allow them to play on large theater screens for attendees to watch live at the Whitaker Center.
“We’ve seen the enormous growth and impact eSports has had in the recent years, and with Harrisburg University’s recent announcement to start its own varsity team, we saw the opportunity to bring that growth to Harrisburg and offer a fully-immersive experience for eSports fans,” said Ted Black, Whitaker Center CEO & President. “The facilities at the Whitaker Center are a game-changer for what traditional eSports spectatorship has looked like to date.”
The Whitaker Center has years of experience bringing high-grade digital media entertainment as well as stage performances to the Harrisburg area. Their expertise will no doubt bring an air of professionalism not yet seen in collegiate esports, especially at the campus level.
“It was a perfect fit for HU to partner with Whitaker Center. Our students deserve to play in a facility that is commensurate to their level of talent,” said Eric Darr, President of Harrisburg University. “As this program grows, we know Whitaker Center will grow with us. It’s a game changer.”
Harrisburg University is located one block away from the Whitaker Center, making it a logical partnership that let the downtown Harrisburg area offer esports experiences not offered anywhere else in the state. Will other esports programs follow suit? Only time will tell.