Tom Nobbe, executive director of Gay Games 2014, said on Thursday
that Cleveland was selected as the host city “to make history.”
The sports and cultural festival is slated to take place next
August in venues throughout Cleveland and Akron.
“I think people are looking at the LGBT community in a different
light and we are thrilled that these games will be in the heartland
because if we are successful that will send a message,” Nobbe
told the Akron Roundtable at Quaker Station. “It's one thing
to hold the games in San Francisco or Sydney, it's another thing to
hold this in Northeast Ohio.”
“The time was right to hold these games in the heartland of
America. Where better than here to bring together the global
community of friendship to experience participation, elevate
consciousness and self-esteem and achieve a form of cultural and
intellectual collaboration. Not to really be over dramatic about
this, but to make history.”
“I think people are going to be kind of surprised with
stereotypes that will be broken with what some folks perceive, you
know, in terms of the LGBT community that they only see on television
for pride events … where people really come out and show the
colors,” he added.
Next year's events are expected to draw 11,000 athletes and 30,000
spectators to Northeast Ohio.