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February, 2012

PAX East Renews its Contract with the MCCA, Will Stay in Boston for the Next 10 Years


Gaming convention PAX East will be staying Boston for ten more years, extending its contract with the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority through 2023. PAX will also fund the state's new games institute to the tune of $25,000 per year.


In just two years, the Penny Arcade Expo East (PAX East) has become the largest convention in Boston, posting 69,500 attendees over three days last March. In a release from the MCCA Wednesday, PAX East organizers said that they hope to reach 100,000 attendees per event over the next ten years, making it one of the largest video gaming events in the world.

With the 2012 PAX East convention happening at the same time as the longer-running Anime Boston this year, that number may be reached sooner rather than later. Officially, however, PAX organizers said in the release that they expect upwards of 75,000 attendees in the upcoming convention, to be held April 6-8 at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

The Massachusetts Digital Games Institute (MassDiGI) will be getting a total of $325,000 over the next 10 years from PAX East. Based at Becker College in Worcester, was launched in 2011 to promote collaboration between academia and the gaming industry in the Bay State. In December, it named local technology veteran Monty Sharma as its first managing director.

Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray, who helped launch MassDiGI, said in a statement in the release that "PAX East's commitment to bringing the largest East Coast video gaming convention to Boston and providing an annual donation to MassDiGI complements ongoing collaboration to increase economic activity within the state and foster knowledge-transfer between Massachusetts and the rest of the world."

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