Debate Day at Dartmouth: What to Expect, See, and Do


The Dartmouth campus comes alive with activity as the college hosts the Republican Presidential Debate on Tuesday, October 11. In addition to the main event, sponsored by Dartmouth, Bloomberg, The Washington Post, and WBIN-TV, there will be much to see in Hanover—and for millions watching from a distance as the debate is broadcast live on television and the Internet.

Debate websites:

Dartmouth College

The Washington Post


There are a number of activities taking place at various campus venues before the debate, some offered for Dartmouth students, others also open to the general public. Visitors to Dartmouth will want to stop by the Green, where space will be provided all day for campaign boosters and other organizations and individuals who want to express their opinions.

Also on the Green, Bloomberg reporters and anchors will broadcast live and discuss the candidates’ proposals. They will interview Dartmouth students and New Hampshire business leaders.

The last time Dartmouth hosted a presidential debate was in 2007, when Democratic candidates came to town. A popular venue was the Green, where candidates’ supporters gathered during the day. When Republican candidates arrive for this year’s October 11 debate, their supporters and many others are likely to once again fill the Green. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)

In addition to the approximately 275 members of the press corps in Hanover to cover the debate, Dartmouth public affairs writers will record the day’s events in blog posts, photographs, tweets, and Facebook updates from the early-morning set-up on the Green through the student Debate-Watch Party at Leede Area in Berry Sports Center. Stay tuned to Dartmouth Now, the college news site, for the developing story.

Many of Tuesday’s events take place in the Hopkins Center, which may be accessed via the main entrance on Wheelock Street. The Lebanon Street entrance, in the rear of the building, will be closed for the day.

Questions about the day’s events may be directed to the Dartmouth Debate hotline, at (603) 646-1900 or emailed to

Here’s a look at the complete list of Debate events:

On the Green

What: Daylong broadcast by Bloomberg Television, interview area for use by members of the media, space for supporters of the GOP candidates and for other organizations and individuals who want to express opinions.

When: All day, Tuesday, October 11

Information Tables

What: Details on the day’s events, including parking, available at a number of locations

Where: Hopkins Center plaza, Collis Center, Baker Library, Class of 1953 Commons

When: All day, Tuesday, October 11


Social Media Discussion

What: Coffee and conversation with Michelle Lockett, global manager of social media for Bloomberg LP.

Where: Class of 1930 Room, Rockefeller Center

When: Monday, October 10, 3 to 4:30 p.m.

Who may attend: Dartmouth students, faculty, staff, and news media; limited number of seats; register online here

For more information: Rockefeller Center website


Bloomberg Television broadcast on the Green

What: Anchors Margaret Brennan, Tom Keene, and Washington Executive Editor Al Hunt will report on the latest job numbers, unemployment, and examine the candidates’ proposals; includes interviews with Dartmouth students and New Hampshire business leaders.

Where: The Green

When: Tuesday, 8 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.; Wednesday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Debate preview, Tuesday, 7 p.m., with Bloomberg analyst Matthew Dowd and guests, including Dartmouth economics professor and Bloomberg contributor Danny Blanchflower

Alternative ways to view this event: Bloomberg Television

For more information: Bloomberg website

Bloomberg Radio broadcast from Hopkins Center

What: Programming includes Bloomberg “Surveillance Midday” hosts Ken Prewitt and Tom Keene

Where: Outside Hopkins Center Box Office

When: All day Tuesday, beginning at 5 a.m.

For more information: Bloomberg Radio


Student Focus Group

What: Sixteen Dartmouth students, eight women and eight men, chosen by Professor Ron Shaiko will discuss and evaluate the GOP presidential candidates and explore the issues at play in the debate.

Where: Pre-debate session in Class of 1930 Room, Rockefeller Center; post-debate session in Wilson Hall, room 219

When: pre-debate session 2 to 4 p.m.; post-debate session, 10:15 p.m.

Who may attend: Public event, but limited seating on a first-come basis

For more information: Professor Ron Shaiko

Meet the Campaigns

What: An opportunity for students to talk with campaign employees and volunteers about their work, campaign issues, and learn about the candidates’ platforms.

Where: Campaigns will have rooms in Rockefeller Center and Silsby Hall

When: 4 to 5 p.m.

Who may attend: Dartmouth students only

Leading Voices: What’s at Stake in the Republican Debate

What: Leading journalists and educators will preview the issues to be debated. Morton Kondracke ’60, executive editor at Roll Call and a Dartmouth trustee, will moderate the discussion. Panelists are Pulitzer Prize-winning writers Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Executive Editor David Shribman ’76 and Wall Street Journal Editorial Board member Joseph Rago ’05 and Dartmouth faculty members Linda Fowler, professor of government and the Frank J. Reagan Chair in Policy Studies, and Matthew J. Slaughter, associate dean for the MBA Program and the Signal Companies’ Professor of Management at the Tuck School of Business.

Where: Moore Theater, Hopkins Center; use main entrance on Wheelock Street, Lebanon Street entrance will be closed

When: 5 to 6 p.m.

Who may attend: Ticket-holders

Tickets: Reserved seating; tickets no longer available; reserved tickets may be picked up at Will Call table in the lobby outside Moore Theater. Will Call opens Tuesday, October 11 at noon.

If you are attending: Doors open at 4:30 p.m.

Alternative way to view this event: Live broadcast on Dartmouth’s YouTube channel

For more info: Dartmouth Now


Student Debate-Watch Party

What: Debate will be broadcast on two large screens; presidential candidates are invited to appear after the Debate; pre- and post-debate show includes remarks from leaders of Dartmouth Republican, Democratic, and Libertarian student groups, President Jim Yong Kim, and Professors Andrew Samwick and Greg Slayton; T-shirt giveaways.

Where: Leede Arena in Berry Sports Center

When: Pre-Show, 5:30 to 7:45 p.m.; Watch Party, 7:45 p.m. to 12 midnight; doors open at 5 p.m. for ticket holders. Pizza will be served at 5 p.m.

Who may attend: Ticket-holders, news media

Tickets: Bleacher seating, general admission; some seating available; register for tickets here. Reserved tickets may be picked up at Berry Sports Center Ticket Office, beginning at 10 a.m. on Tuesday.

If you are attending: Doors open at 5 p.m.

Republican Presidential Debate

What: Brief pre-debate show precedes debate. Candidates will debate the economy in the first debate to focus solely on one issue. Attending are: Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, businessman Herman Cain, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, Texas Rep. Ron Paul, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.

Featuring: Moderator Charlie Rose, Washington Post political correspondent Karen Tumulty, and Bloomberg TV White House correspondent Julianna Goldman

Where: Spaulding Auditorium, Hopkins Center, reserved seating; use main entrance on Wheelock Street, Lebanon Street entrance will be closed

When: Pre-show, 7:30 to 7:55 p.m.; Debate, 8 to 10 p.m.; doors open at 6 p.m. and close promptly at 7:30 p.m.

Who may attend: Ticket-holders; live broadcast viewing (no tickets required) available in Rockefeller Center classrooms 1, 2, and 3 and Silsby 28

Tickets: No longer available; pick up reserved tickets at Will Call table, lobby outside Moore Theater, beginning Tuesday at noon.

Alternative ways to view this event: Debate airs live on Bloomberg Television, Bloomberg Radio, and streaming live at; WBIN-TV in Derry, N.H., will broadcast the debate live in New Hampshire and Massachusetts; comment on Twitter with #econdebate.

For more info: Watch for debate coverage on Dartmouth Now.

Debate Parking on Campus


Visitor parking

Visitors, guests, and supporters may use parking lots north of campus located off Maynard St., and in the Dewey Field complex, beginning at 4 p.m., Tuesday. Shuttle buses will operate to and from campus lots. See times in shuttle section, below. The Hanover Inn shuttle stop provides the best access to the Hopkins Center and the Green. Visitors also may use A-lot, located off East Wheelock St., about a half-mile walk from campus. There is no shuttle service to A-lot.

Media parking

Thompson Lot will be available on Monday, October 10, on first-come availability. When Thompson is full, members of the media may use Dewey Field parking. On Tuesday, October 11, media should use Thompson lot. When Thompson is full, media will be directed to Ledyard lot.

Employee parking

Leverone lot will be closed to employees. The lot will be open only for campaign buses and supporters. Employees who usually park at Leverone may use Thompson and Dewey Field lots. Davis Varsity lot will also be closed to employees. Davis lot will be used for VIP parking. VIP drivers will be admitted by lot attendant. Dartmouth Row, located off East Wheelock Street, will be open only for faculty and staff until 4 p.m. After 4 p.m., the area will be available only for VIP parking, admitted by lot attendant.

Free shuttle service

Shuttle buses will stop at regular stops every 10 minutes at all lots, from 3 to 7 p.m. Buses to Ledyard lot will run from 4 to 11 p.m. From 7 to 9 p.m., buses will run to Thompson lot every 10 minutes and to Dewey lot and the Tuck School every 20 minutes. From 9 to 11 p.m., buses will run to Thompson lot every 10 minutes and to Dewey lot every 15 minutes.

Paid Parking

Metered parking is available in town and in the municipal parking garage, with entrances off Lebanon and South streets.

Susan J. Boutwell