GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (ABC 4)- Rosa Parks Circle in downtown Grand Rapids is the place to be this Friday through Sunday! Not only is ArtPrize underway, but “Confluence Festival,” a free and open event “connecting the worlds of art, music, science and tech through shared experiences,” is back! 

This year, guests can enjoy open-air jams, vendors, live music, food and drinks, a Maker Expo, a robotics parade, a STEAM Expo, art and more. And, for all the video game lovers, don’t miss the Innovation Showcase from 10 to 6 p.m. on Saturday! Maranda stopped by Rosa Parks Circle to learn more about this exciting facet of the “Confluence Festival.” 

What is the Innovation Showcase?

According to Confluence, the Innovation Showcase spotlights gaming and the organizations driving it forward. Each year, the top collegiate and high school teams are invited to compete in esports tournaments. Winners of each division receive prizes, medals, and a custom trophy designed by Kendall College of Art and Design.

This year, collegiate students from Ferris State, Grand Valley, Michigan State, Univ. of Michigan, Central Univ., Lawrence Tech, St. Xavier/Chicago and Oakland University, and highschoolers from West Catholic, Kentwood, Rockford and Mona Shores will compete in a Super Smash Bros. tournament, and they are beaming with excitement! 

“Esports is something I’ve been interested in since I was younger,” one Ferris University Student said. “The tournaments are larger, with larger prizes and more participants in general. It’s just been amazing. Being a part of that industry as it grows exponentially each year is just a dream come true.”

To learn more about the esports tournament and Innovation Summit, click here. View the 2023 “Confluence Festival” schedule of events here.

Sponsored by Ferris State University