Coolidge Cup FAQ for Parents and Coaches

We look forward to welcoming your debater to the Coolidge Cup tournament! Below are answers to common questions you might have about the event. If you have additional questions, please feel free to reach out to Debate Director Jared Rhoads ( or call 802-672-3389.

What is the Coolidge Cup?

The Coolidge Cup is national high school debate tournament sponsored by the Calvin Coolidge Presidential Foundation. Debaters qualify through various preliminary competitions over the school year for a chance to compete in the championship tournament, held in President Coolidge’s historic village, the picturesque town of Plymouth, Vermont. It is held each year on the week of the Fourth of July. The overall champion will receive the $7,500 Robert L. Luddy Coolidge Cup Scholarship.

What costs are associated with the Cup?

The Coolidge Foundation covers travel, lodging, and meal costs for competitors. Though parents and coaches are invited and encouraged to attend the Coolidge Cup, the Coolidge Foundation unfortunately cannot cover the costs of their attendance.

How will debaters get to and from Vermont?

For the 2018 Coolidge Cup, July 1st and 5th will both be travel days for the debaters. Most debaters will fly into Boston-Logan International Airport (BOS) on July 1st where representatives from the Coolidge Foundation will meet them at baggage claim of their respective terminals. Coolidge Foundation staff will be wearing green Coolidge Cup t-shirts. Once all debaters have arrived at the airport, we will depart together for Vermont on private charter buses arranged by the Coolidge Foundation. On July 5th, representatives from the Coolidge Foundation will accompany debaters back to the Boston Airport on the charter bus and will be on hand to help them connect with their outbound flights.

Debaters should book their own flights and will receive a reimbursement from the Coolidge Foundation after the tournament. Round trip flights that are less than $400 can be booked immediately; round-trip flights that cost more than $400 must be pre-approved by the Coolidge Foundation in order to receive a full reimbursement. Flights should be scheduled to arrive into Boston (BOS) no later than 2:00 PM on July 1 and depart no earlier than 12:30 PM on July 5. Please note that debaters who, after booking travel, do not attend the Coolidge Cup will not be reimbursed their travel costs. Any exceptions will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

If you are planning on driving your debater to Vermont, you can drop them off directly at the hotel (Best Western Inn & Suites Rutland-Killington, 5 Best Western Place, Rutland, VT 05701) anytime after 12:00 PM on July 1st and pick them up any time before 11:00 AM on the 5th. A Coolidge Staff member will be at the hotel both to meet debaters and to see them off. Mileage reimbursements, up to $400, at the Federal mileage rate of 54.5 cents per mile will be provided for those who choose to drive.

Debaters traveling from the New York City: please arrange to take the Dartmouth Coach from New York to Lebanon, New Hampshire where a representative from the Coolidge Foundation will pick you up.

Travel information for the 2019 Coolidge Cup will be added here in spring 2019.

Where will the debaters be staying?

All debaters will stay at the Best Western Inn & Suites Rutland-Killington (5 Best Western Place, Rutland, VT 05701). Debaters will share a room with one of their fellow competitors of the same gender and we will provide debaters the opportunity to choose their preferred roommate. Coolidge Foundation staff will be staying at the hotel to chaperone debaters who are not accompanied by a parent or coach. The hotel is a 25-minute drive from the President Calvin Coolidge State Historic Site (3780 VT-100A, Plymouth, VT 05056) where the debate events will take place. The Coolidge Foundation has arranged a shuttle to take debaters from the hotel to the Coolidge Historic Site each day.

Can I attend the Cup with my debater?

Parents and coaches are welcome and encouraged to attend the Coolidge Cup, however the Coolidge Foundation is unable to cover costs associated with their attendance. Parents and coaches who will be attending should rent their own car as shuttle space will be prioritized for debaters and Coolidge Staff and mobility in Vermont requires a vehicle.

We ask that parents who wish to share a room with their child cover half of the cost of the room ($50 per night) which also includes breakfast at the hotel. If you will be coming with multiple family members, we do have a few suite-style rooms available as well. If you are interested in booking a room at the Best Western, please contact Jared Rhoads ( To avoid confusion please do not contact the hotel directly, they will not be able to extend our group rate to you over the phone.

Parents and coaches should plan on arranging their own meals (breakfast is included for those who purchase rooms from our block at the Best Western, and there is a restaurant at the Coolidge Historic Site).