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Pokemon players gather in Nashville

Dec. 13, 2011 at 4:00 AM

NASHVILLE, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- Organizers and participants in the Nashville Pokemon City Championships said 47 people showed up to test their skills at the card game against one another.

Rick Mitchell, 44, said during Sunday's event at The Next Level Games that Nashville has a thriving Pokemon scene and people travel from all over to test their skills at the trading card game against Nashville's champions, The (Nashville) Tennessean reported Monday.

"A lot of people don't even know we have a league here," Mitchell said. "Nobody realizes that we have such a robust city championship ... Nashville is really known as kind of a hotbed for Pokemon."

Mitchell's niece, Taylor, 17, was ranked the No. 4 Pokemon player in the country in 2004 and has won more than $10,000 toward her college tuition playing the game.

"In middle school, there was a group of boys who were making fun of me about it, sort of bullying me," she said. "But I was like, 'I won $4,000, what did you do?'"

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