The stage is set for the 2019 55+ BC Games to take over the streets, waters and fields of Kelowna.
The 55+ Games start on Sept. 10 with more than 4,200 competitors in over 30 different sports gathering in the Okanagan for friendly competition.
The four-day event will feature a little bit of everything in 2019, taking advantage of the wide array of sporting opportunities Kelowna offers, from water, ice and field sports to card games.
After a year-long process to organize, the president behind that volunteer organizing effort, David Graham, said Kelowna is ready.
“We’re very pleased with it,” said Graham.
“There are some bits and pieces that need to be done still, but the big rocks are in place and we’re ready to go.”
Graham said with an expectation of more than 4,200 competitors, it will be the highest number of participants in the history of the Games.
Along side the competitors will be nearly 1,200 volunteers that will help host all the games which range from hockey, dragon boat racing, bridge, slo-pitch, cycling, golf, tennis and archery.
The games serve as a chance to celebrate older athletes who stay active year after year and continue to play the games they love all over B.C.
In Kelowna, which has been recognized for its sports-hosting in the past, it adds a great event for local athletes and tourists as a final send-off to the summer.
“It’s a great exclamation mark to the wonderful season,” said Graham.
“Kelowna’s tourism season seems tor stretch longer and longer every year.
“It’s not just the sports themselves, but the high social activity for the athletes and a great boom to the local economy.”
Graham speculates that a $3 million economic impact to Kelowna and other parts of the Okanagan is not too far out of reach.
The Games start Tuesday as athletes will crowd the Capital News Centre in preparations and accreditation for their respective sport.
Opportunities for volunteering with the event are still available at 55plusgames.org/kelowna2019.
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