You can add another major event to Canada's Tournament Capital's schedule.
Kamloops has been named host of the 2023 Special Olympics BC Winter Games.
This will be the fifth time the city has hosted the provincial games for athletes in B.C. and the Yukon with intellectual disabilities.
About 800 athletes are expected to descend on Kamloops from Feb 2 to 4 next year,competing in the eight sports which make up the games.
These include 5-pin bowling, alpine and cross country skiing, curling, figure skating, floor hockey, speed skating and snowshoeing.
“We are pleased to once again host the Special Olympics BC Winter Games. The pandemic has been a long road for everyone—we are fully prepared to host and celebrate the return to sport at an event where everyone is empowered to achieve their personal best,” said City of Kamloops Mayor Ken Christian.
“Sports have the power to bring people together, and we can’t wait to welcome back athletes, coaches, officials, and spectators into our community.”
Provincial games are exciting and empowering experiences for Special Olympics athletes. For many, these games offer their first opportunity to have the joy of travelling and being part of a team.
SOBC games give athletes the chance to be seen and celebrated for their abilities, which matters now more so than ever coming out of the isolation deepened by the pandemic.
“I am so pleased on behalf of Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc to be extending a warm welcome to the 2023 Special Olympics BC Winter Games being held here in Kamloops. They will be visiting our direct unceded ancestral lands within Secwepemcúlecw (Shuswap Nation) and we look forward to all the athletes who will be visiting the tournament capital. We hope that everyone enjoys the beauty of these traditional lands while here in Kamloops and has an amazing time competing in all the categories of this wonderful sporting event,” says Kukpi7 Rosanne Casimir, Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc.
Kamloops hosted the first ever Special Olympics BC Games in 1986. Since then the city has hosted winter games in 2003 and 2015 and the summer games in 2017.