Over 1,500 libraries are participating in the American Library Association’s (ALA) third annual National Gaming Day, which takes place on November 13.
The organization is billing the event as “the largest simultaneous national video game tournament ever held,” as it will allow participants to play against competitors in other libraries around North America. This year's tournament games are Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Rock Band.
During last year’s event, over 31,000 people played games at over 600 libraries in the U.S. and Canada.
Librarians, it was stated, follow the ESRB rating system and also do “extensive research” into games before allowing kids to play them. Featuring new media, like games, allows libraries to expand their reach, while meeting community expectations.
A map of participating locations can be viewed here. A map of participating locations can be viewed here. One lucky library will also win a $5,000 gaming gear shopping spree from library supplier Demco.
When asked why kids should play games at the library the ALA responded:
Lots of kids play video games at home – alone, with siblings, or with friends. The library is a safe and non-commercialized space. At the library, kids socialize with their friends and play video games while surrounded by books, librarians, and knowledge. Video gaming at the library encourages young patrons to interact with diverse peers, share their expertise with others (including adults), and develop new strategies for gaming and learning.
Thanks The Escapist!