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Drury hosts Stoa national homeschool debate tournament May 22-28

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 20, 2016 — Drury University will welcome thousands of young debaters and their families to Springfield next week, as it hosts the 2016 Stoa National Invitational Tournament of Champions.

Stoa is a speech and debate organization for Christian homeschooling families. The national event is expected to bring about 3,000 high school and junior high students, parents, coaches and spectators to Springfield beginning today through May 28. The tournament’s biggest days will be Monday and Tuesday, when nearly every building and room on the Drury campus will be in use by Stoa. Central High School, located on Benton Avenue just west of Drury, will also host portions of the event.

The Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau expects the city to be bustling with families staying at hotels, shopping, dining and visiting attractions when they’re not busy at the tournament. The CVB estimates spending of about $125 per person per day, which means a potential economic impact of several million dollars.

And a generous scholarship offer from Drury will make a potential impact on these students’ college education. The University is offering over $4 million dollars in potential scholarship money to participants who choose to attend Drury in the future. All participants will receive a $1,000 scholarship. Those who advance to subsequent rounds will receive $2,500 and $5,000 scholarships, and overall winners will receive a $10,000 scholarship to Drury.

“Drury is extremely pleased to host this event,” said Rob Fridge, Drury’s chief financial officer. “We’re excited to help bring this group of high-achieving students and their families to town. We can’t wait to show them what Drury and Springfield have to offer.”

An opening ceremony will be held at 5 p.m., Sunday, May 22 at the O’Reilly Family Event Center on the Drury campus. Competitions begin at 8 a.m. Monday through Saturday and continue into the early evening hours each day. NITOC features four speech categories (Interpretive, Limited Preparation, Platform and Wild Card) and three debate categories (Lincoln-Douglas, Team Policy and Parliamentary).

For more information on the tournament, visit http://www.stoausa.org/nitoc-2016.

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Media Contacts: Mike Brothers, Drury Director of Media Relations – (417) 873-7390 or mbrothers@drury.edu; and Rob Fridge, Drury Chief Financial Officers and event co-organizer – (417) 873-7527 or rfrdige@drury.edu.

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