Although it may seem far off, excitement is starting to brew for the 2022 USA Games presented by Jersey Mike’s Subs that will be taking place June 5 – 12, 2022 in Orlando, Florida.
Let the nominations begin!
Here in Wisconsin, nominations are now officially being accepted for athletes to join Team Wisconsin at the USA Games. Currently, the nomination period is open for bowlers who will ultimately make up the bowling team of four male athletes, four female athletes, and four Unified co-ed bowlers.
Nomination periods will open up for athletics and swimming in the spring of 2021 while bocce, flag football and softball will begin accepting nominations in the summer of 2021. All told, Team Wisconsin will comprise 65 athletes and Unified partners from around the state. This will make for a larger team than in 2018, when 53 athletes and Unified partners represented Wisconsin in the USA Games in Seattle.
Unified Play will be a large part of this year’s team, as bocce, bowling, and flag football will all have Unified components. Team Wisconsin’s Unified Soccer team supplied one of the more thrilling moments of the 2018 USA Games when the tight-knit squad defeated Team Colorado in the finals for a dramatic gold medal victory.
Global Ambassadors announced
Another reason excitement is high for the 2022 USA Games is last month’s announcement of the USA Games Ambassadors for the event. The roster touts stars of sport and stage such as Big Show, Mark Cuban, Ellen DeGeneres, Whoopi Goldberg, Tiffany Haddish, Grant Hill, Jimmy Kimmel, Rob Lowe and Lin-Manuel Miranda, Dan Marino and many more.
“We are honored and ecstatic to announce such an impressive lineup of Games Ambassadors who range from sports heroes and Hollywood stars, to cultural influencers and society leaders,” said Joe Dzaluk, President & CEO of the 2022 Special Olympic USA Games in the press release announcing the roster. “It is through their global reach and unwavering passion for those with intellectual disabilities that we can speak to millions across the country about our mission of inclusion and inspire our athletes during the Games’ journey.”
More than 4,000 athletes, 10,000 volunteers, 1,500 coaches, and 20,000 families and fans from all 50 states and the District of Columbia will converge on Orlando for the 2022 USA Games. Competitions will take place at world-class venues like the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort, the YMCA Aquatic Center, the U.S. Tennis Association campus in Lake Nona, and other sporting facilities across the Orlando area.
Athletes and Unified partners will compete in 15 Olympic-type team and individual sports, as well as 5 potential demonstration sports.