There’s another reason to get out of the house (safely) and socialize.
Playa Vs. Playa celebrated it grand opening of the Detroit-based gaming lounge on Tuesday with Deputy Mayor Conrad Mallett and Kevin Johnson, DEGC President and CEO, who joined Lance McGhee, owner of Playa Vs. Playa on the bright spring day.
Located at 15850 Wyoming Ave., Playa Vs. Playa is a Motor City Match Round 15 cash awardee of $60,000, according to a press release. McGhee used the funding to renovate the hip-hop and comic-themed gaming lounge – the first of its kind in Detroit. This unique facility provides cross-generational, inclusive and safe entertainment through e-sports, as well as a diverse array of contemporary and retro video and board games.
“As we revitalize our neighborhood commercial corridors across our city, entrepreneurs like Lance McGhee are taking the lead with the help of the Motor City Match program,” said Mayor Mike Duggan in the press release. “Playa Vs. Playa will be a great addition to the offerings on Wyoming Avenue, providing a safe, fun destination for families and a catalyst to attract more investment to this neighborhood.”
The idea of Playa Vs. Playa was born out of a desire to bring innovative and creative activities for Detroit’s residents. The club hosts tournaments for serious competitive gamers and is forming leagues for e-sports gamers to compete on a national level. Tournaments will offer prizes and be live-streamed.
McGhee says when gaming is promoted as an inclusive activity for all children, the result is improved academics and student engagement.
“Playa vs. Playa is the only facility to offer face-to-face e-sports style gaming, board games and traditional stand-up games all under one roof in the City of Detroit,” said McGhee. “It’s important to offer a safe space for gaming to all Detroiters, but especially kids. With the help of Motor City Match, I’m proud to be able to fill this gap for Detroit’s inner-city neighborhoods.”
While Playa Vs. Playa officially opened its doors in early 2020, its grand opening celebration was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The lounge offers more than 10 different console systems from Atari to virtual reality, all of which can be played on a variety of monitors. Gamers also have the option to bring in their own consoles and peripherals using the lounge’s one-gigabit internet connection.
Playa Vs. Playa is one of 116 open Motor City Match businesses that have received support from the program. Of those businesses, 81 percent are minority-owned, 71 percent are women-owned and 64 percent are owned by Detroit residents. The program continues to have a large and positive impact on Detroit’s small business community, including:
- 20 more MCM businesses are expected to open in 2021
- More than 1,000 jobs have been created as a result of open MCM businesses
- $9.5 million has been awarded in cash grants through MCM and Motor City Re-Store, which has leveraged $44.1M in additional investment into Detroit neighborhoods
- Nearly 300 additional home-based and mobile businesses have started or expanded with the help of Motor City Match
“Motor City Match continues to have a tremendous impact on Detroit,” said Johnson. “More Detroiters are on a path to economic mobility, have been given a chance to pursue their passions, and have access to goods and services in their neighborhoods. We are using all of our MCM learnings to create even stronger support for Detroit’s small business community – the heartbeat of our City.”