Learn how the Allen Event Center shattered records when it hosted a recent event for a professional esports league.
There are certain stats any event planner can appreciate, whether you’re an esports enthusiast or have never heard of competitive video gaming. When the Allen Event Center hosted the inaugural Bud Light Homestand Weekend earlier this year, the sold-out event became the largest spectator crowd to ever watch a live regular season Overwatch League competition, with more than 9,000 fans in attendance over two days.
The best part? The technology, network and support staff that made this high-energy, record-breaking tech event possible are available to quarterback your next meeting or event.
Major Connectivity for a Major Event
The Homestand Weekend featured 100 of the world’s best esports players from eight international teams, including the Dallas Fuel. With teams traveling to Allen from across the globe—including London, Paris and Seoul—Bill Herman, general manager of the Allen Event Center, knew his facility would be in the spotlight. “Our staff began focusing on this event as soon as it was announced in December and put in countless hours to meet and exceed the high expectations of the league and the team.” To accommodate the event’s streaming needs, as well as its tech-savvy and mobile-driven fan base, the Center upgraded its networking systems and provided 10 times its usual Internet capacity (10 gigabits with a redundancy of three gigabits).
Sponsorships and Activations
Due to the rising popularity of esports, the event drew major sponsorships (think Bud Light, T-Mobile and Topgolf) and activations (spectators had a chance to take a photo with the Bud Knight). For Allen Event Center, this meant a full-court press to support these high-profile sponsors, with extra staff ready to handle the rush of attendees and any logistical needs that arose.
The Homestand Weekend was broadcast on ESPN2, raising the expectations (and the production needs) for the event. With a priority on communication and coordination, the Allen Event Center staff worked directly with several production companies, labor providers, television broadcast teams, game server crews and networking crews—even a pyrotechnics team—for a dynamic production that both wowed fans and impressed the team leadership. “This was an incredible weekend on a number of levels,” said Geoff Moore, president of the Dallas Fuel.