Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Gay Games?

The Gay Games are an international sporting and cultural event held every four years. Launched in 1982, the Games invite participation from all athletes—regardless of sexual orientation, race, gender identity, sex, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, political beliefs, athletic or artistic ability, age, physical challenge or health status. The Games offer a safe environment for LGBT competitors and are open to anyone 18 years or older. Typically, about 10% of participants are non-LGBT, often friends and family who participate to show their support.

When are the Gay Games?

Cleveland + Akron, Ohio, USA will host the ninth Gay Games (GG9) on 9 – 16 August  2014. Our region will join the ranks of San Francisco, New York, Chicago, Vancouver, Sydney, Amsterdam and Cologne as hosts of this quadrennial celebration.

Where will participants come from?

The event draws participants from all over the world, particularly North America, Western Europe, and Australia/New Zealand. Participants will travel from cities with large LGBT populations like Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Miami, Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle. In addition, we are reaching out to mid-sized Midwestern cities within driving distance of Cleveland + Akron.

How many people are expected to attend Gay Games 9 (GG9)?

We are expecting up to 9,000 participants from around the world, along with an estimated 20,000 additional guests, performers, spectators and volunteers. The number of participants in the Gay Games is comparable to the number of athletes in the Summer Olympics. Cleveland + Akron will host 35 sports and culture events. Sports will be as varied as softball, track & field, soccer and swimming to rodeo, bowling, volleyball and rowing. Culture competitions include choral and band performances.


Venue Year Participants
Beijing 2008 11,000
Athens 2004 10,600
Sydney 2000 10,650
Atlanta 1996 10,300
Barcelona 1992 9,400

How do people register to participate in GG9?

General registration is now open for participants! Go to http://gg2014.sportingpulse.com/ and create a user account. The first of the sport and culture-specific registrations opened July 2012. Spectator ticket packages go on sale Spring 2013.

Do participants receive medals?

Yes, competitors earn medals for first, second and third place, as well as medals for participation.

Where will events take place?

Cleveland + Akron have world-class venues, facilities, and cultural institutions. In Cleveland, participants will enjoy many thriving downtown locations, including the newly built Convention Center and Cleveland State University facilities, plus locations at Case Western Reserve University, historic landmarks and in other eclectic neighborhoods. In Akron, we will leverage several downtown venues, nearby University of Akron facilities, and Firestone Country Club. Events will be located as central to public transportation as possible.

How do volunteers sign up to help 2014 Gay Games?

We will need thousands of volunteers to make the Games a success. We are counting on the LGBT and allied communities to support the efforts. To learn about volunteer opportunities, go to our contact page and complete the information. We will then provide you updates on ways to get involved.

How do people donate to support the efforts of 2014 Gay Games?

A great deal of fundraising is necessary to ensure the Games are a success. We welcome individual donations, in-kind sponsorships, and company contributions. You can make donations online, or to discuss other sponsorships or corporate opportunities please contact Mary Zaller at mzaller@gg9cle.com Donations are tax deductible as allowed by law.

Why was Cleveland +Akron chosen to be the host for 2014 Gay Games?

Cleveland + Akron was chosen to host the Games because of our superb sports venues, affordable accommodations, accessible transportation, the support of our diverse civic leadership and our ability to create change. Read More about Cleveland and Akron.

What is the anticipated impact of 2014 Gay Games?

The Gay Games offer many opportunities to not only our region but the state and nation as well. During the week-long event, the Games will contribute tens of millions of dollars to the region’s economy. What’s more, this experience of planning and hosting the Games will transform communities through collaborative efforts, evolved thinking about diversity, and education about important issues. We’ll have the chance to showcase our region and the hospitality of the people who consider Cleveland + Akron home, and we anticipate that visitors will return to enjoy what our region has to offer.

How is 2014 Gay Games preparing to host visitors from around the world?

We are ready to host the Games and the visitors coming to our region. We work closely with the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission, which is internationally recognized for their expertise in hosting major sporting events. In addition, we receive active support from the convention & visitors bureaus in Cleveland + Akron, both specializing in serving LGBT travelers.

What is the Federation of Gay Games?

The Federation of Gay Games (FGG) is the umbrella organization responsible for managing the Gay Games and works in collaboration with the staff and board of 2014 Gay Games. The FGG, an all-volunteer organization, safeguards the founding principles of the Gay Games: Participation, Inclusion, and Personal BestSM. The FGG’s assembly members include sports and culture organizations from every continent.

What types of entertainment will 2014 Gay Games provide?

In addition to the exhilarating Opening and Closing Ceremonies, 2014 Gay Games will host live concerts, theme parties and exhibitions, and Festival Village where athletes, community members, families and other visitors can enjoy time together. Special events will be hosted at theatres, art galleries, museums, attractions, nightclubs, and restaurants as part of the celebration.