ST. GEORGE — The Huntsman World Senior Games returns to Southern Utah for its 32nd year next week.
The annual event takes place each October in St. George and is open to athletes age 50 and above from all around the world and of all skill levels.
This year, the Games will welcome a record number of participants — over 11,000 — to Southern Utah, according to a press release issued by the Huntsman World Senior Games. All 50 of the United States are represented and athletes from more than 29 different countries will take to the playing field, competing in 32 different sports from Oct. 7-19.
“The Games is a total experience,” Kyle M. Case, Games CEO, said in the press release. “We know that athletes can play their sports at home, so when they come to the Games we want to give them something special.
“Whether you are competing or not, there is something exhilarating about the World Senior Games. We want our athletes to feel that exhilaration and we want the community to as well. These competitors show us all what it takes to work for our dreams. Our invitation to the residents of Washington County is to come and celebrate that with us.”
On Tuesday at 7 p.m., the Games will officially welcome the athletes to the community at the opening ceremonies. Following the tradition of the Olympics, the ceremonies feature a parade of athletes, singing and dancing and a fireworks display.
This free event takes place at Trailblazer Stadium at Dixie State University. Three-time Olympic Gold Medalist Leah Amico will give the keynote address, speaking on athletes achieving their dreams. Borrowing a line from Billy Joel, the theme of the show is “River of Dreams” and will feature music from the Piano Man.
In addition to the Opening Ceremonies, the Games hosts a free “Concert & Celebration” on Tuesday starting at 7 p.m. The show takes place in the Dixie State University Burns Arena featuring Joel the Band, a Billy Joel tribute band. The community is encouraged to attend.
For more information on the Games or any of its events, visit www.seniorgames.net.
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