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May 30, 2020 - Brandon Marx

Reno Beer Pong Blowout 2020 | COVID-19 Update

Due to ongoing uncertainty in the State of Nevada where the Reno Beer Pong Blowout 2020 is scheduled to take place in late July 2020, as well as travel restrictions and uncertainty worldwide, we have made the difficult decision to cancel this event. As recently as this week, we were still preparing for the event to occur and for it to be a smashing success and wonderful time for all. However, a few things outside of our control have changed this week, which has led to our decision.

CalNeva has been excellent throughout this process in keeping us informed despite the difficulty they have been going through during their prolonged closure. The Gaming Control Board had mentioned that casinos would be cleared to open on May 22nd, at which time CalNeva would follow up with us within the week as to how their soft open would affect our event. Unfortunately for us, that date was push back by the legislature of the State of Nevada to June 4th.

We had anticipated giving you, our customers and friends, a full steam ahead green light this week for the event to go forward, thereby allowing players to continue to take advantage of our early bird special, as many of you have already done. Pushing back the casino opening also pushed back the date of us getting information from CalNeva, and would thereby have pushed back the time we could tell you all to confidently by tickets, and also pushed back when you would have bought airfare. In essence, delaying everything another two weeks caused a huge cramp of the schedule.

That said, we still would have been confident going forward with the event had we been assured that we would be cleared to go forward with a normal event. Prior press releases by the governor’s office stated that casinos would be able to allow conferences of fewer than 250 people, for which our event would likely qualify. However, in an effort to keep everyone safe from a potential second wave of COVID-19, we would have to perform various safety measures, which are simply incompatible with a large scale beer pong tournament.

For example, if the event were to go forward, players would likely only be admitted to the ballroom while their actual games were being played. Playing surfaces would need to be sanitized between all games. Players may have been required to use their own balls rather than sharing. Facemasks, gloves, etc. were also discussed possibilities. Obviously all of these measures would be for your own safety, but they would drastically cut down on the fun and efficiency of the event.

Finally, of course, the safety of our players is paramount. Many players who had intended to compete in this event are from states with significant numbers of COVID-19 deaths and infections, including New York, New Jersey, and California. We certainly do not want to be responsible for a second spike in a pandemic, especially given how many beer pong players tend to go home sick with “pong flu” when it is not the midst of a pandemic. We sympathize with those who have been safely socially distancing and we do not wish to put all that to waste.

Therefore, based on the totality of the circumstances we are simply not holding the event. At of the time of this posting we have already began processing REFUNDS FOR ALL REGISTRATIONS that we’ve received over the last few months!

Additionally, we are working on restructuring the event to continue to hold it digitally in some fashion. With the great success that we have had with Zoom events thus far, as well as the expanded expected scope of the upcoming Kings of the Cups, we believe the demand is there to hold this event virtually if the players want it.  Whether it would be held the same weekend or sometime in August/September has yes to be decided.

In sum, we are very disappointed to cancel an event that we had been greatly looking forward to for months. We hunger for a time when this community can unite for the type of party we anticipated having in July in Reno. We will continue to do what we can to provide an escape during this difficult time in whatever way we can, and we will begin plans for future in-person events.  Eventually a return to normalcy will coincide with tournaments held to the level of excellence our customers expect of Pongstars Events.

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