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When you think about eSports in Texas, the city of Frisco probably comes to mind. For 10-year gaming veteran and Geekletes Founder Danny Martin, he wants the Southern sector of Dallas — better yet Desoto — to be synonymous with eSports, along with Frisco, Plano, Dallas and many others.
From an earlier makeshift space in Downtown to now a mega arena in the heart of Desoto, Martin – as one of the only African-American eSports organization owners in the world – is set to make history in the multi-billion dollar industry, and he’s taking the entire Southern Dallas community along with him for the ride.
The trek down Desoto’s Belt Line Road now grows with excitement — as new businesses stake claims, and the freshly minted Geekletes facility (nestled next to the neighborhood Walmart) towers into view. Spanning 15,600 square feet, the former ITT Technical Institute building is now transformed into a multi-dimensional eSports institution powered by Martin and his team of professionals.
“I wanted to coin [Geekletes] as the Top Golf of eSports where individuals can be able to come in and have fun, but also really learn,” Martin said. “Top Golf did a really good job of applying technology [with] a fun atmosphere – and that’s what we want to be able to do inside of this space.”
And frankly, this is an understatement by the ultra-humble Lancaster High grad. Geekletes now boasts a 4,500 square foot arena, massive screens, a main stage, DJ booth, a commentator’s booth, a full café, outside patio with speakers, two podcast rooms, a full-sized kitchen, event spaces for birthday parties and AR/VR activations, 6 tournament gaming rooms, offices, and more.
Ladies and gentleman — this is not a game.
“I really wanted to make sure that this is an opportunity to not get pushed aside but to grow as the industry is growing,” Martin commented. “I don’t want anybody in this area [Southern Dallas] to get capped. So since [Geekletes] is on the same level playing field, I want to actually give what I would have given over in a different area of my career – meaning my time, my resources, my money…for the community to benefit in the eSports world.”
The multi-technical platform officially opens August 17th. Area gamers will now have the ability to host their own tournaments, get scouted by pro eSports teams and grow in community. As someone who assisted with Mavs Gaming’s scouting for NBA2K gamers, Martin vows to nurture those aspiring for an eSports career and to consistently give back to the Southern Dallas community.
As for the future, Martin is taking eSports to the books. From UTA to UNT to Paul Quinn College – Geekletes is developing curriculum for gaming and strongly believes in no gamer left behind.
“We recognize that we’ve been able to give so many individuals opportunities. If we know that that’s our skill set, then we need to be able to have a space to be able to keep that going, because that’s where our value comes in at.”