Orlando, Florida Officially Named Host City For The 2022 Special Olympics USA Games

Thousands of athletes, families and fans will be coming to Florida for the Special Olympics USA Games in June 2022

ORLANDO, Fla., May 18, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, Special Olympics North America and Special Olympics Florida are proud to announce Orlando, Florida has been officially awarded and named the host city for the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games. Taking place from June 5 through June 10 in 2022, more than 4,000 athletes, 10,000 volunteers, 1,500 coaches, and 75,000 fans from all 50 states and the District of Columbia will travel across the U.S. to unite and participate in one of the world’s most cherished sporting events – the Special Olympics USA Games. For the first time, an invitation will be extended to Special Olympics Programs in the Caribbean to also participate in the Games.

The Games will be comprised of 15 Olympic-type team and individual sports, as well as five potential demonstration sports. The Games are expected to be hosted at various venues across the Orlando area including, the YMCA Aquatic Center, the U.S. Tennis Association campus in Lake Nona, Walt Disney World® Resort and Boardwalk Bowl. 

Central Florida has long been known as a welcoming destination for families and boasts some of the world’s most famed attractions, including world-class experiences and sporting venues. Beyond that, Florida itself is renowned for its hospitality, making it the ideal location for the unifying and inspiring Special Olympics Games. The 2022 Special Olympics USA Games will mark the largest humanitarian event in Florida’s history. Additionally, the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games will also celebrate the 50th anniversary of Special Olympics Florida.

“After a year-long bid process, we are proud that so many of our athletes, coaches, volunteers, families and fans will get to visit Florida for the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games,” said Joe Dzaluk, President and CEO of 2022 Special Olympics USA Games. “The USA Games will open our hearts and minds towards people with intellectual disabilities. This monumental endeavor will create a pivotal stage for Special Olympics and brings to light the passionate work Floridians have long been doing, including helping the outstanding athletes achieve their dreams and promote health, education, inclusion and acceptance.”

Hosting the Games in the Orlando area not only builds excitement among the thousands of athletes and patrons, but it comes with the potential to generate as much as $61 million dollars in economic impact for the Orlando area.

“We are beyond delighted here at Special Olympics Florida that so many Special Olympics athletes and families will be coming to our awe-inspiring city of Orlando,” said Sherry Wheelock, President and CEO of Special Olympics Florida. “For years, the USA Games have inspired thousands of people through the power of sports, and it is our goal here in Florida to continue the tradition by connecting, promoting and motivating individuals by showcasing our commitment to those with intellectual disabilities and our passion for education, health and sports.”

Governor Rick Scott said, “Each year, the Special Olympics provides an opportunity for thousands of Floridians to stay active and healthy, and every four years, the nation comes together to celebrate these incredible athletes. As Florida prepares to host the 2022 Games, we will be celebrating the progress we’ve made toward diversity and inclusion, but we will also be supporting and creating jobs here in Orlando. We couldn’t be more excited about hosting the Special Olympics USA Games in 2022.”

To learn more about the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games or to get involved locally, please visit Special Olympics Florida’s website at specialolympicsflorida.org and follow the organization on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

About Special Olympics
Special Olympics is a global inclusion movement using sport, health, education and leadership programs every day around the world to end discrimination against and empower people with intellectual disabilities. Founded in 1968, and celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year, the Special Olympics movement has grown to more than 5 million athletes and Unified partners in more than 170 countries. With the support of more than 1 million coaches and volunteers, Special Olympics delivers 32 Olympic-type sports and over 108,000 games and competitions throughout the year. Special Olympics is supported by individuals, foundations and partners, including the Christmas Records Trust, the Law Enforcement Torch Run® for Special Olympics, The Coca-Cola Company, United Airlines, The Walt Disney Company, Microsoft, Lions Clubs International, Bank of America, Essilor Vision Foundation, the Golisano Foundation, Safilo Group, and TOYOTA. Click here for a full list of partners. Engage with us on: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and our blog on Medium.

Media Contact
Nathalie Franco
Uproar PR for Special Olympics

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/50e7f486-388f-42b3-a7d6-5a1985de0c0e

Orlando, Florida Officially Named Host City For The 2022 Special Olympics USA Games