Awesome Games Done Quick Leaves Florida Over Covid, LGBTQ+ Laws


Florida Governor Ron DeSantis

Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis
Photo: SOPA Images (Getty Images)

The next major Games Done Quick event, January’s Awesome Games Done Quick, will be an online-only event after the show’s organisers released a statement saying “we do not believe [Florida] is a safe place for our community” in light of the state’s putrid policies towards Covid and marginalised individuals.

While the Summer Games Done Quick event made a triumphant return to a live event with crowds in July, AGDQ—whose last live edition was in 2019 at the DoubleTree Hilton in Orlando—had for 2023 “secured a contract with a venue in Florida”, an agreement that has now been ditched in light of the organiser’s decision.

Here’s their statement in full (emphasis mine):

AGDQ2023 returns live, online from January 8th to the 15th, 2023, benefiting the Prevent Cancer Foundation!

While we would love to return in-person, we’ve determined that to provide a safe and welcoming event to all it was best that we move away from our originally planned location in Florida.

Given the state’s continued disregard for COVID-19’s dangers (including anti-mandate vaccination policies) and an increased aggression towards LGBTQ+ individuals, including the law colloquially known as “Don’t Say Gay,” we do not believe it is a safe place for our community at this time.

Immediately after the success of AGDQ 2020, we secured a contract with a venue in Florida to return in 2021. Since the global pandemic was declared, we postponed in-person events until it was safe to return.

We’ve explored multiple options which would allow us to remain in-person by relocating to a safer location. Unfortunately, the cost required to cancel our contract is too great to justify relocating AGDQ while paying the cancellation fee, and we are no longer able to delay our contract. This ultimately led us to move AGDQ 2023 online.

While the move to online will allow us to save some on expenses, we still have considerable costs to recover. We are looking to recover that money where possible, including with community support via Twitch subs. We thank the community for their support!

It’s a shame the move has cost them, but hopefully the 2024 event can find somewhere the team are more comfortable calling home. Note this doesn’t affect Summer Games Done Quick, which since 2018 has been held at the DoubleTree Hilton in Bloomington, Minnesota.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

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