The 2022 Special Olympics USA Games are taking place in Orlando this summer, and Walt Disney World is the main host venue.
Scheduled for June 5-12, the games will bring together more than 5,500 athletes and coaches from all 50 states and the Caribbean to compete in 19 Olympic-style team and individual sports.
The ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex will host many of these competitions, including basketball, flag football, gymnastics, powerlifting, soccer, softball and volleyball.
Meanwhile, Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon will host the surfing competition and Disney’s Coronado Springs will host the bocce competition.
The Special Olympics USA 2022 Opening Ceremony will take place offsite at Exploria Stadium near downtown Orlando, but is produced by Disney Live Entertainment.
Hosted by journalist and national television personality TJ Holmes, the one-of-a-kind opening ceremony will feature more than 500 artists, as well as a special live performance by Grammy-winning artist Sara Bareilles.
“I am honored to be part of the Opening Ceremony,” shared Sara Bareilles, “Music unites and inspires, and that’s what Special Olympics does every day. Being part of the US Games and playing for the athletes and their families as they begin this incredible week is a real gift.
Additionally, Special Olympics athlete Shawn Hinz, joined by Disney’s Voices of Liberty, will sing a solo during “America the Beautiful.”
“There are sure to be magical surprises, upbeat dance numbers, audience participation and heartfelt beautiful moments when Disney is here to help USA Games ‘Shine as One,’” said Disney Live Creative Director Tom Vazzana. Entertainment.
Tickets for the Opening Ceremony are $55 each. If you can’t be there in person, ESPN, the global broadcast partner of Special Olympics and the USA Games, will broadcast the ceremony on June 5 at noon EST on ABC, as well as on WatchESPN and ESPN the app.
If you are a group of 10 or more people, you can also participate in their Fans in the Stands program. Show up and clap loudly as athletes compete, especially since some have families who weren’t able to come.
Walt Disney World will also host a theme park party for athletes and event planners. You may notice shorter parking hours during games week. For example, EPCOT hours on June 5 are reduced.
To learn more about Special Olympics USA 2022 or to purchase tickets, visit 2022USAGames.org.