It was held in a charter school, and holy cow was it different from anything I remember from my speech and debate days or that I've encountered while judging. There were more than enough (not too many, mind; I don't think there are ever too many) judges, most of whom were parents from the school. They'd even had a training session on judging. Lunch was provided for the judges, which isn't unusual, but most of it was home-cooked food donated by the parents. It was really amazing to see the parental involvement at the event.
I judged in two rounds; in another first for me I did Lincoln-Douglas debate (LD) in the first round. The round involved two sets of students debating the same topic. I ended up giving the first win to negative and the second win to affirmative. I also discovered my phone had not been charged and the stopwatch was therefore inoperative. Question for iPhone users: is there any way to keep the screen from going idle-dark when in stopwatch mode? I've tried upping the idle-out time when using the stopwatch prior to this, to no avail.
The second round I got really lucky and judged the finals in duo. This was far closer to the duo I remember than in the first tournament this year. From what I remember (and this could just be faulty memory), duo used to be strictly one scene, with participants not allowed to move around or make eye contact with one another. In the versions I've seen here, there are myriad scenes with cuts denoted by turning, trading places, or taking steps away, and with eye contact allowed during the transitions.
The duo I judged in the first tournament was for novices, and in addition to being jarring with all the moving around, they also had abrupt cuts and an excess of motion. Today's group, who not only were not novices but who were also the best four, were far more restrained and had smoother cuts. There was a clear fourth place team, the first place team was half-a-step above the others, and second and third were very difficult to decide between. Not even one more second for one team and they would have had points docked for going over time, which would have made the decision easier. As it was, they ended up at 29.1 seconds into the grace period of 30 seconds.
Since they had so many judges, they decided not to allow a person to judge the same event twice. The final round was exclusively LD, so those of us who had judged it in the first few rounds were allowed to go home early.