EL PASO, Texas – The Sun Bowl Association announced on Friday, Sept. 22, 2023, that it has partnered with Gold Star Gamers and UKnightedXP to host an E-Sports Tournament on Thursday, Dec. 28, 2023, at Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas.
The Gold Star Gamers host competitions to help kids who have suffered the loss of a military parent find hope and healing through competitive gaming. This event will feature teams competing against each other in the game ROCKET LEAGUE, a game that combines soccer and race cars.
“We, at the Sun Bowl Association, really enjoy getting involved with children and military veterans,” said Executive Director Bernie Olivas. “This event features both so what better way to get involved!”
According to the Gold Star Gamer website, when a child loses a parent, their whole world changes. They experience a huge drop in self-esteem, are at-risk for PTSD and suicidal thoughts. The kids tend to worry about their surviving parent and experience separation anxiety. School grades go down, friends are lost, and the future becomes unknown. Through Gold Star Gamers programs, Gold Star kids can access fun tool to process their grief with Gold Star Gaming programs that reach out on their level.
“The Sun Bowl Association’s gracious decision to partner with Gold Star Gamers E-sport event, is a great example of how people of El Paso and the State of Texas value our Veterans and their Families,” said Jerry Jacobitz, Veteran Program Coordinator, Veteran and Military Affairs. “Gaming is one way that servicemembers connect with their children while deployed. By supporting this competition we are honoring the children of the ones who paid the ultimate sacrifice.”
The participants will not only have the opportunity to compete in this event and will also get to attend the 90th Annual Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl game as VIPs. The participants and one chaperone will have loge box seating and will receive a t-shirt, hat and other game-related concessions.
This event is the first of its kind, where a bowl game teams up with an E-Sports event/organization.
The Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl is set for a 12 p.m. (MT) kick-off on Friday, Dec. 29, 2023, with teams from the ACC and Pac-12 facing off. The game will be televised on CBS for the 55th consecutive year.
Gold Star Gamers mission is to help kids that have suffered the loss of a military parent find hope and healing through competitive gaming. When a child loses a parent, their whole world changes. They experience a huge drop in self-esteem, are at-risk for PTSD and suicidal thoughts. The kids tend to worry about their surviving parent and experience separation anxiety. School grades go down, friends are lost, and the future becomes unknown. Through Gold Star Gamers programs, we reach these kids on their level and their terms. Gaming is a culture that is not only important to the young, but also to the military community. Often during deployments or times of separation service members will game with their kids back home. The programs are aimed at helping these kids find joy again, connect with other kids in similar situations, rebuild natural self-esteem, know that the military community has not forgotten about them, and finally to let them live out their dream of playing in a pro tournament.
Gold Star Gamer kids have two things in common. One, they all suffered the loss of a military parent. Two, gaming is their primary tool for dealing with their grief. Gold Star Gamers has three different programs designed to meet the needs of our gamers ages 7-18: Mentorship, Training Camps, Tournaments & Events.
The Sun Bowl Association is a volunteer based nonprofit 501©(3) organization. The Sun Bowl Association, with the help of over 700 volunteers, promotes and serves the El Paso community and features a year-round schedule of events, culminating with the Annual Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl football game.
The Sun Bowl Association was founded in 1934 with a threefold purpose:
1) to create a quality event for the Borderland ,
2) to create and provide positive-National recognition for El Paso,
3) to have a positive economic impact for the City of El Paso through tourism.
On Oct. 18, 1934, at a meeting of the El Paso Kiwanis Club, Dr. Brice Schuller suggested that the club sponsor a football game on New Year’s Day, matching an El Paso High School All-Star Team against a worthy opponent. The motion was passed unanimously. It was decided to ask for public suggestions as to the name of this annual game, and the name “Sun Bowl” was submitted by Dr. C.M. Hendricks, who became the first president of the Sun Bowl Association.
Sun Bowl Association
4150 Pinnacle Street
El Paso, Texas 79902