Southeast Missouri and West Kentucky Level Up with Contender Esports


The year Brett Payne, founder of Contender Esports,1 had his “ah ha” moment about the worldwide impact of esports. Just a few years later, esports is now a reality.

“Skills are skills. Gamers have them just like the golfers, baseball players and boxers. We celebrate them.”
- Brett Payne

Payne joined the Cape Girardeau community Thursday, January 27th for Codefi’s Fireside Chat. We learned how Brett, alongside his team, started and franchised over 20 Contender Esports Local Area Network (LAN) Centers across the globe from Canada to Saudi Arabia to the United States - and they’re still leveling up.

Two new Contender Esports Centers are set to come to the midwest by the end of this year: one facility in Cape Girardeau and one across the Mississippi in Paducah.

The Relentless Contenders, LLC investors group will bring people together through these centers for enjoyment, fellowship, tournaments, skills development, in-person interaction and competition, aiming to enhance the excitement of the ever-evolving esports phenomenon, facilitate a fun environment in which to play video games with friends, promote meaningful relationships, and help expose esports and video gaming enthusiasts to career opportunities that can connect passion with purpose.

“Education and recreation organizations will soon need the same infrastructure for esports that are in place for traditional youth and adult competitive sports. The esports centers we are opening will provide access to a world-class facility and programs to immediately help meet these demands.”
- James Stapleton

Esports are big with kids, because of course they love dedicated time, space, and people to game with. Many of the skills gained in esports – confidence building, problem-solving, and teamwork – have a big overlap with the skills coders are gaining in the Youth Coding League2 (YCL). Coding, esports, robotics—all make up a broad spectrum of tech opportunities for kids. The more interest levels that are appealed to, the more kids will gain critical tech skills, and that's only a good thing.

“We’ve seen the passion young people have for gaming and esports through our Youth Coding League, which has provided coding education to over 2,000 5th - 8th graders in seven states the last few years. For those who may not have the skills or opportunities to become a professional esports player, we think there is a natural progression to apply these skills in software development and other related digital occupations.”
- Chris Carnell

About Contender Esports

Contender Esports LAN centers are growing across the globe. The noobs are wondering: What is a LAN center? (It’s cool, we have some noobs too). Picture you and your friends bringing your favorite gaming systems over to your house, hooking them up with questionable loads on the circuit, and playing together; now, picture having that same experience without having to unhook and haul your gaming gear with you in a super slick, state-of-the art gaming facility ready and waiting for you to get some one hit knockouts. Not only can you game at Contender Esports with your friends, but you get a way more hyped experience you can’t replicate at home.

Think you can’t be beat? Contender Esports hosts tournaments at least twice a month to find out who’s on top in your city. Whether you’re team Sony or Microsoft, or maybe PC rules the World, we’ve got something for you.

Keep up, if you can!

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