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The NCFL Grand National Tournament

Tournament announcements will be posted here. Please check the tabs on the right for additional information.

  • *** IMPORTANT: Wristbands *** Wristbands are required for access to the convention center. These will be made available to your Diocesan Director on Friday afternoon. You MUST make arrangements to pick these up from your director. Otherwise your students will not be able to enter the convention center on Saturday. This is not a minor bookkeeping issue.
  • Power Outlets for Debate: We are pleased to announce that all the cubicles on the Convention Center Exhibit Hall Floor for Policy, Public Forum, and Lincoln-Douglas Debate will have power available in them. Each cubicle will have 2 standard power plugs.
    To accommodate all debaters and judges in each cubicle,
    • Each Policy & PF debate team should bring a power strip with at least 5 sockets on it, and each LD Debater should bring a power strip with at least 4 sockets on it. If a team does not bring a power strip, then they are not allowed to plug in at all.
    • Debaters and judges who expect to plug into the power strips should bring their own adapters and extension cords. Please bring extension cords because we cannot rearrange the furniture in the cubicles. Due to the power restrictions we are not allowed to plug in more than 7 laptops in any cubicle at any one time.
    • The tournament will not supply power strips or extension cords. Bring your own!
    Thank you to the donors who have made contributions to help make this possible.
  • Tentative Schedule Posted: For scheduling and planning purposes the Tournament Schedule has been posted Here.
  • 2018 Service Project: The NCFL is proud to partner with Martha's Table. For over 37 years, Martha’s Table has worked to support stronger children, stronger families, and stronger communities by increasing access to quality education programs, healthy food, and family supports. For more information about this amazing opportunity Click Here.
  • Congress Legislation: Congress Legislation for Prelims, Semifinals, and Final Rounds has been posted Here.
  • Lunch Orders: Saturday boxed lunches are now available for students and judges. Please click the link for ordering information. Order Here. Please order by May 15.
  • PF Resolution: Resolved: Resolved: Municipalities in the United States ought to be able to declare themselves “sanctuary cities”.
  • LD Resolution: Resolved: Bystanders have a moral obligation to act in the face of injustice.
  • Event Locations: Preliminary locations for Friday, Saturday have been posted under General Info Tab (in this section)
  • Parking: Parking in D.C. can be a challenge. We have provided a PDF document to help you navigate through the process. It is posted in the PDF Section of this website.
  • United Airlines Discount: The NCFL has negotiated with United Airlines for a discount for those flying to D.C. for nationals. Information and discount code is located in the PDF Section of this website.
  • Judging: Quality judging is crucial to any tournament. Links for individuals looking to be hired as a judge at the National Tournament and for coaches looking to hire judges at the National Tournament have been posted under General Info Tab (in this section) . Please fill out the appropriate form.
  • Extemp Topic areas: Posted under Topics Tab (in this section) . The window is open for submitting Extemp Questions.
  • Hotel Blocks: Now open. See the links below. Please book through the Conference Direct Links.

Copy of 2017 NCFL Fall Meeting Power Point for DC Nationals.

Extemp Questions can be submitted between February 5 and April 15.
Submission information will be posted as it becomes available.

NCFL Tournament
Detailed league and tournament information can be found at NCFL.org.

The NCFL sponsors the annual Grand National Tournament on Memorial Day weekend, offering six forensics events and four debate events.

The National Association of Secondary School Principals has placed this program on the NASSP National Advisory List of Student Contests and Activities for 2018.

What are the deadlines?
Schools joining through a Local Diocesan League, must submit their Membership Forms and Dues to their Local League according to their Local Diocesan League deadlines. Local Diocesan Leagues must submit all membership forms and dues ($50 per school) by December 10. New and Existing Local Diocesan Leagues may submit late membership forms and dues ($55 per school) by January 10. New Leagues must submit membership information not later than January 10. Schools requesting Individual Membership must apply not later than January 10. Tournament Registration must be completed, and fees paid, by April 15

What is the tournament format?
Registration by league directors is on Friday afternoon. Directors arrange to distribute registration materials to coaches and judges from their local leagues on Friday night. Preliminary rounds are held on Saturday. Elimination round participants are announced on Saturday evening after Mass. Elimination rounds are held on Sunday and are followed by an awards ceremony, which will recognize the top contestants in each event. School and League awards are also distributed at the awards ceremony.

How can a student qualify to compete?
The student’s school must be a member of an NCFL Local League. These leagues are geographically distributed across the United States. Each league develops its own qualification system for the national tournament. Some leagues use a point system while others hold a qualifying tournament. League quotas represent the maximum number of entries in each category that can advance to the Grand National Tournament from each local league.

NOTE: A school that is not a member of an NCFL league may enter as an independent school for one year only. As such, that school could send one entry to the Grand National Tournament. After that, the school would have to join an NCFL league in order to continue participating. Only schools that are not geographically near an existing local league can apply for individual membership. Application for this membership should be made to the President via email, not later than December 10 each year.

What are a participating coach's responsibilities?
The coach must become familiar with all rules and procedures of the NCFL. Certain categories may be unique to the NCFL, or be slightly different from those of one’s state or region. NCFL coaches must also arrange to pay all fees and provide all required judges. A significant fine will be assessed to any school who fails to provide a judge after registering for the tournament.

Tournament information will be updated here as it becomes available.

  • Tentative Tournament Schedule Posted (5/11)
  • Martha's Table 2018 NCFL Service Project (5/4)
  • Congress Legislation Posted (4/25).
  • Saturday Lunch Orders are closed.
  • 2018 Grand National Tournament PF Resolution (4/16)
  • 2018 Grand National Tournament LD Resolution (4/1)
  • Getting Around / Thing To Do / Places to Eat(3/17).
  • Event Locations (3/3).
  • Parking Information (2/22).
  • Extemp Topic Areas Posted (2/2).
  • Hotel Blocks are open (1/16).

    Please remember debate rounds will be held on the floor of the convention center. Outlets will not be available on the convention floor in the cubicles. We are working on access to charging stations in the hallways and lobby areas. Please ensure any devices can get you through the rounds as charging access will be limited.

    Twitter Feed

    Last Eight Posts
    (See TWITTER for all Updates)
  • Hired Judges
      Hired Judging is Closed.
    Preliminary Site Information
      This is a breakdown of where the various events and rounds will be held during the course of the weekend. This information is available below in the Sites section. It is also available as a PDF in the Info section.
      • Diocesan League Directors Registration, Work Room, and Meeting: Friday at Marquis.
      • Policy Debate: Saturday at Convention Center, Sunday at Marquis
      • LD Debate: Saturday at Convention Center, Sunday at Renaissance
      • PF Debate: Saturday at Convention Center, Sunday at Renaissance;
      • OO, DEC, EXT: Saturday at Convention Center, Sunday at Marquis
      • DP, DUO: Saturday at Marquis, Sunday at Marquuis
      • OI: Saturday at Convention Center & Renaissance, Sunday at Marquis
      • Congress: Saturday at Grand Hyatt & Renaissance, Sunday at Grand Hyatt
      • Mass: Saturday at Church of the Immaculate Conception.
      • Postings Party: Saturday at Marquis.
      • Awards: Sunday at Marquis.

    Policy, PF, and LD debate judges should be linked in Tabroom.com so that they can participate in OnLine Balloting. More information will follow.

    Please review all of the NCFL ByLaws and Rules. Event descriptions and ballots can be found at http://ncfl.org/competition-events Be sure all coaches of speech students have their original sources in case of a protest.
    The following will be posted here as soon as they become available:

  • Congress Legislation
  • Debate Topic Areas
      LD Topic - Resolved: Bystanders have a moral obligation to act in the face of injustice
      PF Topic - Resolved: Municipalities in the United States ought to be able to declare themselves “sanctuary cities”
      Policy Topic: Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase its funding and/or regulation of elementary and/or secondary education in the United States.
  • Extemp Topic Areas (in no particular order)
    • US Legal & Constitutional Issues
    • US Foreign Policy
    • US Economic Policy
    • Journalistic Integrity & Social Media
    • Medicine, Science, & Technology
    • Societal Values & Ethical Issues
    • International Conflict & Civil Unrest
    • Foreign Economics
    • Leaders of Developing Countries

    • Thank you to everyone who sent in topic area suggestions.

      All students and coaches are invited to send in Extemp Questions that we can use at NCFL 2018. All questions should be submitted to Extemp@ncfl.org between now and April 20. You can submit just one, or you can submit as many as you’d like for any or all of the topics. Take the opportunity to WRITE YOUR OWN Question - you may have the opportunity to choose to speak on the question that you wrote.
  • NCFL 2018 Service Project


    The NCFL is committed to serving the greater community.

    Martha's Table

    This year, our hosts in the Washington/Arlington Diocese have selected Martha’s Table to be the beneficiary of the NCFL’s annual service project. For over 37 years, Martha’s Table has worked to support stronger children, stronger families, and stronger communities by increasing access to quality education programs, healthy food, and family supports. They believe that every child deserves the opportunity for their brightest future and a deeply engaged family and community committed to their success, and we would like to help them accomplish that goal!

    How You Can Help!

    There are numerous ways that you, your team, and your diocese can help support Martha’s Table.
    • Donate Food. Trail mix, sandwiches, canned goods, and fresh produce are always in demand. Check out the attached flyers for details.
    • Donate Toiletries & Supplies for Babies. Toiletries for children and adults are always in demand. Buying a new toothbrush for the trip? Buy an extra and donate it! Packing toothpaste? Bring an extra tube to donate! Don’t need the toiletries the hotel gives you? Donate them! Martha’s Table is also always in need of diapers, baby wipes, and bottles.
    • Donate Gently Used Business Attire. Martha’s Table works with people to help them find jobs, so gently used business attire is something they are always looking for. Have a suit in your closet that you are never going to wear again? Pop it in your suitcase and pass it along to someone who needs it!
    • Donate Money. This is the easiest to pack and bring with you to DC! A single meal costs approximately $.50 for Martha’s Table to provide. One night of feeding the homeless via their “McKenna's Wagon” costs about $500. We have 4,500 friends coming to Washington DC for NCFL 2018. Think about how many people we can help feed if each of us pitched in just a few dollars! Together, we can make a big difference! We’ll be collecting money at various places throughout the tournament, please give what you can.
    Spread the Word!

    Last year at NCFL 2017 we raised over $4,000 and donated several boxes of toiletries and goods to Safe Place, Louisville, and that was just while we were AT the tournament. Help us spread the word in advance, and let’s see if we can DOUBLE what we were able to do last year! Here are ways you can help us spread the word and make this our most successful service project yet!
    • Share your pledges on social media and ask your friends to consider contributing to our efforts! Don’t forget to tag #NCFL2018!
      • "Buffalo pledges $350 towards a meal and 100 toothbrushes for the #NCFL2018 service project!"
      • "Mount Mercy Academy is providing $350 towards one meal at #NCFL2018 for Martha's Table. Can you do the same?"
    • Send friendly challenges your team, your diocese, other teams, and/or other diocese!
    • Get your community involved! Collect money or donations at home and bring them with you to DC!
    The following pdf's contain additional information and some fun recipies.

    Some additional information about Martha's Table
    (and sandwich making kit)


    Try these seasonal Trail Mix Recipies

    Thank you for your efforts! See you at NCFL 2018!

    2018 NCFL Nationals Tournament Hotels

    Hotel blocks for 2018 NCFL Nationals are now open.

    Please book all hotels through Conference Direct.
    To make a reservation at our hotels,
    please use Conference Direct Housing.

    Click the BOOK NOW link if you are only reserving a few rooms.

    If you need to reserve 6 or more rooms please set up a sub-block by clicking the BOOK GROUP link.

    Book Now (LIVE) Book Group (LIVE)

    The hotel websites are linked as a courtesy.
    *** Please, do not book rooms for the NCFL Tournament through the hotel websites. ***

    Click on the address for a map.

    Custom Tournament Booklet

    The following documents can be viewed separately or combined into a single PDF.

    To view a single PDF, click on the NAME of the document. To create a custom PDF, select the files you want and then hit the CREATE CUSTOM PDF button below. Alternatively, you can print all of the PDFs, by selecting PRINT ALL.

    Total PDFs Selected:

    The documents will be merged in the following order:

    CREATE CUSTOM PDF Print ALL

    Event schedule

    Welcome to the 2018 Grand National Tournament.

    This is the tentative tournament schedule.

    Schedule at a Glance?

    Where Do I Go Saturday?

    Where Do I Go Sunday?

    Tentative Printable Schedule

    Convention Center - 153
    Grand Hyatt - Washington Boardroom
    Convention Center - 146-ABC
    Convention Center - 146-ABC
    Marriott Marquis - Salon 12-13
    Marriott Marquis - Salon 5-6
    Convention Center - 151 AB, 145 AB, 147 AB
    Grand Hyatt - Independence Salon FGHI
    Convention Center - 146-ABC
    Convention Center - 150-AB
    Convention Center, Marquis, Renaissance -
    Marriott Marquis - Ballroom Foyer
    Renaissance Center - Registration Tables
    Convention Center - 146-ABC @ Convention Center
    Convention Center, Marquis, Renaissance - Pre-Paid Boxed Lunch pickup at the patio at 1050 K Street
    Convention Center, Marquis, Renaissance -
    Convention Center - Pre-Paid Boxed Lunch pickup at the patio at 1050 K Street
    Convention Center - Pre-Paid Boxed Lunch pickup at the patio at 1050 K Street
    Convention Center - Pre-Paid Boxed Lunch pickup at the patio at 1050 K Street
    Grand Hyatt - Pre-Paid Boxed Lunch pickup at the patio at 1050 K Street
    Convention Center, Marquis, Renaissance - Pre-Paid Boxed Lunch pickup at the patio at 1050 K Street
    Convention Center, Marquis, Renaissance -
    Convention Center, Marquis, Renaissance -
    Convention Center, Marquis, Renaissance -
    Marriott Marquis - Marquis Ballroom
    Marriott Renaissance - Lafayette
    Marriott Marquis - Capitol Hill
    Marriott Renaissance - Carnegie
    Marriott Marquis - Georgetown U
    Marriott Marquis - Salon 12-13
    Grand Hyatt - Bulfinch & Renwick & Latrobe
    Marriott Marquis - Independence Salon ABCDE
    Marriott Marquis - Liberty Salon UK-L
    Marriott Marquis - Georgetown U
    Grand Hyatt - Bulfinch & Renwick & Latrobe
    Marriott Marquis - Liberty Salon UK
    Marriott Marquis - Georgetown U
    Marriott Marquis - Georgetown U

    2018 NCFL Nationals Tournament Sites and Locations

    Things to Do and Places to Go

    Getting Around Washington D.C.

    Things to do in Washington D.C.

    Restaurants and Eateries - Web Page

    Smithsonian Alternatives - Article