By Nicole Crescenzi
For the first time in nearly 30 years, Greater Victoria is hosting a major multi-sport event.
The 55+ BC Games are kicking off on Tuesday, Sept. 13 and run until Sept. 17.
The 55+ BC Games is an annual, multi-sport competition celebrating active and healthy adults 55 years of age and older. Each year, the event is hosted by a different city or region in the province.
More than 2,500 competitors will participate over four days in 22 sports and activities at venues across the Capital Region. Events include pickleball, track and field, hockey, cycling and cribbage.
“The excitement continues to build within our participants, and they can’t wait to get to Greater Victoria for the Games to begin,” Paul Kingan, president of the BC Seniors Games Society, said in a statement.
This will be the first time the 55+ BC Games will be hosted in Greater Victoria, and the first major multi-sport event to the region since the 1994 Commonwealth Games and 1997 North American Indigenous Games. It will also be the first run of the games since 2020, after they were shut down due to the pandemic.
“Our organizers, volunteers, sponsors, municipalities and the community at large have been working together to make these Games unforgettable for all participants and people of the region,” Michael O’Connor, president of the Host City board of directors for the 2022 Victoria 55+ BC Games, said in a statement. “Together, we will show Greater Victoria has the venues, infrastructure, and expertise to host high-calibre, high-visibility multi-sport Games.”
The opening ceremony will take place at Victoria’s Save-On-Foods Memorial Arena at 7 p.m. on Wednesday Sept. 13.
On Thursday, Sept. 14 there will be a free public festival from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Government Street from Humboldt to View streets, and will include street hockey and roller skating, circus performers, buskers and live music.
Throughout the event, admission to games at all venues are free and can be found via the 55+ BC Games online schedule.
For more information, visit 55plusbcgames.org.