Metro Weekly

Washington Rallies around the Gay Games XI

The city is doing all it can to bring Gay Games XI to the nation's capital in 2022

Gay Games 2022 DC bid

After losing out to Cleveland for the chance to host Gay Games IX in 2014, Brent Minor is determined to make sure D.C. succeeds in 2022.

“D.C. is the most visible city in the world, and the story of the Gay Games needs to be heard and seen by as many people as possible,” says Minor, chair of Gay Games DC 2022, the executive committee handling Washington’s bid.

“We are a strong and experienced group that can ensure a successful Gay Games, not just in terms of quality competitions, but in terms of strong fundraising and strong attendance,” he says. “And I think that would help the federation to ensure the strength of the Gay Games movement for future generations.”

The bid committee has only a few months before October, when it must make a final presentation before the annual meeting of the Federation of Gay Games in Paris — the site of the 2018 Gay Games.

In order to convince the FGG that D.C. should be chosen over Guadalajara, Mexico, and Hong Kong, China, the bid committee will be spending its summer months recruiting more corporate sponsors, ensuring that its proposed venues are all in order, and holding events to promote public support for the games.

One such event is a Gay Games XI rally on Wednesday, June 28. The rally will feature political figures, including Mayor Muriel Bowser, performances from the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington, DC Different Drummers, and Cheer DC, as well as an appearance by Briana Scurry, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and World Cup champion with the U.S. Women’s Soccer team.

The bid committee also plans to hold a “progressive dinner” with three different embassies in D.C. to help raise money for the bid, and is in talks with Town to bring in “a big name” for a party that will serve as a send-off for the committee members who will argue D.C.’s case before the FGG.

Some sponsors of the bid will be donating their services to help the process. Hilton, for example, is providing rooms to the FGG’s site inspection team when they examine D.C.’s sporting facilities later this summer.

“Everybody is bringing what they do best to this bid. And that is going to help us get through this process,” says Minor, adding that the bid has support from each of D.C.’s 34 LGBTQ sports teams.

“We want each sports team to help raise money through this bid with support from our liquor and beer sponsors, because we want to be able to go to Paris and say every single team is supporting this bid — and not just with a letter. They all have skin in the game, they want to see these games held here. That’s a big statement in my mind.”

The official Gay Games XI Rally is Wednesday, June 28, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the National Museum of the American Indian, 4th Street and Independence Avenue SW. For more information, visit ggdc2022.org.

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John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at jriley@metroweekly.com