Host Cities Cleveland + Akron Ready for 2014 Gay Games | Sports Destination Management

Host Cities Cleveland + Akron Ready for 2014 Gay Games

Jun 23, 2014

The Cleveland Special Events Corporation, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, is making significant progress in preparing for the ninth Gay Games (GG9), a global sports and culture event coming to Cleveland + Akron August 9-16, 2014. The Gay Games are one of the largest multi-sport festivals in the world that is open to all – regardless of skill level, age (18+), sexual orientation or physical challenge.

The weeklong festival of sports and culture is expected to draw more than 10,000 participants from around the world, along with an estimated 20,000 additional visitors, performers, spectators and volunteers.

Tom Nobbe, GG9 Executive Director, said: “Gay Games 9 will generate tens of millions of dollars in economic activity for the region. In addition, this event presents an opportunity to showcase Cleveland and Akron as world-class destinations, welcoming all visitors.”

Participants will be able to register for the Gay Games using the new GG9 website during May. To date, hundreds of people from all over the world have already expressed their interest in participating, volunteering or otherwise supporting the Gay Games in 2014.

Currently, Gay Games 9 has more than 100 volunteer professionals from across the LGBT and allied communities who are currently serving on nine committees. The committee members are working on GG9’s logistics and operations, sports venues, marketing, development, educational outreach and more.

“We are very happy with the pace and quality of GG9’s preparations for the 2014 Gay Games,” said Kurt Dahl, co-chair of the Federation of Gay Games, the international governing body that awarded the Gay Games to Cleveland and Akron. “We have found Northeast Ohioans, particularly the LGBT community in Cleveland and Akron, to be passionate about their region and their ability to make these Games the best ever.”

Gay Games 9 also is forging strategic partnerships throughout Northeast Ohio. For example, three local creative agencies of record – Brokaw, Aztek and Consolidated Graphics Group, Inc. – are providing pro bono support and services in the areas of branding, web design and print production.

“We’re preparing for a huge event, said Hollie Ksiezyk and Steve Sokany, co-chairs of the Gay Games 9 Board of Directors. “And, there are many ways for the community to get involved and contribute to this effort.” 

Approximately 35 sports and culture events are expected to be a part of Gay Games 9. Events will run the gamut from softball, track & field, soccer and swimming to volleyball, bowling, marathon and rowing to band, orchestra and cheer. GG9 is presently in discussions with over 30 separate event venues throughout the region.

In addition to the competitive sporting events, Gay Games 9 will offer cultural events such as concerts, theme parties, and exhibitions as well as Festival Villages in Cleveland and Akron where athletes, community members, families and other visitors can enjoy time together.

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