Featured events

7-9 September 2012
Brussels Games

Brussels Gay Sports will offer a weekend of fun and fairplay in the capital of Europe, with volleyball, swimming, badminton, and tennis, as well as fitness and hiking.

Learn more HERE.
26-28 October 2012
Bern, Switzerland

The success of the first edition of the QueergamesBern proved the need for an LGBT multisport event in Switzerland. This year will be even bigger, with badminton, bowling, running, walking, floorball.

Learn more HERE.
17-20 January 2013
Sin City Shootout
Las Vegas
The 7th Sin City Shootout will feature softball, ice hockey, tennis, wrestling, basketball, dodgeball, bodybuilding and basketball.

Learn more HERE.

13-16 June 2013
IGLFA Euro Cup
After this year's edition in Budapest at the EuroGames, the IGLFA Euro Cup heads to Dublin for 2013, hosted by the Dublin Devils and the Dublin Phoenix Tigers.

Learn more HERE.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Chicago LGBT sports in the mid 1980s

Chicago's Windy City Times is celebrating its 25th anniversary. A major sponsor of the 2006 Gay Games and published by Tracy Baim, co-VP of Chicago's organizing committee, the paper is one of just a handful that has provided consistent LGBT sports coverage over the years. In this story in their 25th anniversary issue, WCT's sports writer Ross Forman talks about the Chicago LGBT sports scene in the mid 1980s, important leaders, the role played by AIDS/HIV, the influence of the Gay Games, and the impact LGBT sports in Chicago had on the city as well as worldwide LGBT sports organizing. Front and center in the photo is Peg Gray, the very first co-president of the Federation of Gay Games, who passed away in 2007.

Chicago, Sept 29, 2010: "Chicago's LGBT sports community has grown into, arguably, the biggest, best and most organized in the nation, if not the world. And its roots run concurrently with the launch of the Windy City Times' 25 years ago.

"By 1985, [ the LGBT sports community ] was already getting large. There were already well over 1,000 members of MSA ( Metropolitan Sports Association ) and several hundred in each of the other groups," said Chicagoan Dick Uyvari. "National organizations and tournaments already had been formed in the major GLBT participation sports such as softball, bowling, volleyball, tennis, etc. In addition, leagues were being formed in other sports, such as darts, flag football, pool, golf, etc."

"Chicago was, for all intents and purposes, the gay sports capital of the United States in the mid-1980s.

Read the full article HERE. Photos by Tracy Baim.

Best wishes to Matthew Mitcham

After a period of doubt as to whether various teams would attend, and even whether the Games would take place, the Commonwealth Games will open in New Delhi this Sunday.

Among those taking part is Matthew Mitcham. We thank Matthew for taking time from his training for these Games to join us in Cologne last summer, and wish him the best of luck in New Delhi!

Commonwealth Games "innovates" by having athletes in stadium for Opening Ceremony

I am surprised that this is not standard practice at such events. I don't recall a Gay Games where the participants spent the opening ceremony outside the stadium...

By the way, the motto for these Games is "Come out and play". Hmmm....

From InsideTheGames:

September 30 – Athletes at the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony will march into Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium ahead of the display before sitting down to enjoy the entire spectacle for the first time ever. The procedure was first seen at the Summer Youth Olympic Games in Singapore last month and the move of putting athletes at the heart of the event has clearly not gone unnoticed in Delhi.

Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) President Michael Fennell said: "Both the CGF and the Organising Committee have agreed that the emphasis of the Opening Ceremony must be on the athletes of the Commonwealth, allowing them to be the focus of attention. "The Games are about the athletes, the ceremony recognises the commencement of the Games, so it is appropriate that the athletes are honoured in this way."

Dignitaries attending the ceremony include Indian President Pratibha Devisingh Patil, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Prince Charles and the Organising Committee chairman Suresh Kalmadi. Prince Edward, The Earl of Wessex who is the vice patron of the CGF, will also be present as will Fennell and controversial CGF chief executive Mike Hooper.

The Queen’s Baton is set to arrive at the stadium at 8.26pm having completed a 170,000 kilometre journey across the Commonwealth’s 71 nations and territories. The baton will be received by the Prince of Wales who will read the Queen’s message before the President of India delivers her address to signal the commencement of the Games.

Welsh bowler Robert Weale, who boasts an impressive collection of Commonwealth Games medals, told insidethegames: "I think it’s going to be quite a different experience. "In previous Games, we’ve been waiting in holding areas and, as Wales, we’re quite often last to go in.Sometimes, I’ve got back home to Wales and watched the DVD! So it’ll be a great opportunity to see the ceremony itself. I think Delhi will bring something special to the event too. It will be so different culturally - I’m expecting lots of colour as well as Bollywood dance and music."

Kate Walsh, captain of the England women’s hockey team, added: "The opening ceremony will be a fantastic spectacle and it will be so great to be sitting there watching the entire thing. "I hear this is going to be an amazing opening and I’m really looking forward to it."

Equipe France reception at the ministry of health and sport

On Friday 24 September, all medal winners from Equipe France 2010 were invited to a reception in their honor at the French ministry of health and sport. Speaking at the reception were Mme Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin, minister of health and sport, Bruno Aussenac, President of the FSGL, and Christelle Foucault, 1st VP of the FSGL, FSGL delegate to the FGG, and chair of Equipe France 2010. Mme Bachelot has already served as the patron of the TIP multisport tournament, and has now graciously accepted to serve as the patron of the FSGL.

This is the first time medal winners in an LGBT sports event have been honored in this fashion.

During the reception, FGG co-president Emy Ritt presented Mme Bachelot with a Gay Games VIII participation medal. Also present were board members Sonia Abécassis and Marc Naimark, and FSGL delegate to the FGG Maria Salvietti.

In the following posts you can find the speeches of:
Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin
Bruno Aussenac
Christelle Foucault

Equipe France reception at the ministry of health and sport: Bruno Aussenac

Bruno Aussenac, president of the Fédération sportive gaie et lesbienne, made the following speech at the reception in honor of French medal winners at the ministry of health and sport on September 24:

Madam Minister,

You honor us today by welcoming the French medal winners from Gay Games VIII in Cologne this summer.

You supported 534 French athletes, you and your junior minister for sport, Madam Rama Yade, by subsidizing this official uniform, that we wore while winning thise medals with our sports performance and our human values.

In the Gay Games, anyone can participate, whatever their sexual orientation, their age, their origins. In the words of Pierre de Coubertin, "what is important is to participate".

"We are fighting for a world we're a part of", let's play as a team for equal rights. As an example, more than ten years ago, you supported the creation of civil unions, alongside gay and lesbian associations. Today, civil unions are used by the entire population, with most civil unions being between heterosexual couples.

The emancipation of one group does not take place at the cost of another. On the contrary, progress for one represents progress for all. That is why we hope that the movement launched by our Federation will benefit the entire sports world.

Our slogan is: "Against all forms of discrimination, let's play sport together." It seems obvious to us that the struggle against discrimination, whether because of race, sex, sexual orientation, are of a kind.

After 25 years of existence, our Federation has now found, thanks to you, a Ministry of Sport that listens to us and supports our actions.

For the last two years you have been the patron of our TIP multisport tournament. Today, you are now officially the patron of our LGBT sports federation.

Thank you!

Equipe France reception at the ministry of health and sport: Christelle Foucault

Christelle Foucault, first vice president of the Fédération sportive gaie et lesbienne and chair of Equipe France 2010, made the following speech at the reception in honor of French medal winners at the ministry of health and sport on September 24:

Madame Minister, if I may remind you of the context of our experience last summer:

In July 2010, France was sad.

During the 2010 Football World Cup in South Africa, we heard of players who appeared not to love wearing the French jersey, of their scandalous behavior. Far from the values of sport, we lost our bearings. That glorious moment following the French victory in the 1998 World Cup, which we hoped to find again, vanished faster than we could have believed, too fast, and with great pain.

This was a blow to this value of sport that in our hard economic times can seem a sort of El Dorado, based on the hope of a people in a group they expect to be exemplary.

At the same time, and after this disillusionment that could not fail to touch them, the French athletes participating in Gay Games VIII were preparing for this event quietly, sometimes in a bit of a panic. And imagine the faces of your coworkers when you tell them that you're going to spend your summer vacation in Germany, of all places!

Unlike the athletes mentioned above, the 534 members of Equipe France had real pride in wearing the colors of France. Most participated in funding the cost of their uniform, showing their commitment to the honor of wearing it.

Throughout Cologne, people took note of the jackets with FRANCE written across the back. Members of American teams in particular were keen to ask how we had managed to have over 500 people wearing the same official national track suit!

You see them here before you. These are the medal winners who defended your colors, our colors.

Equipe France reception at the ministry of health and sport: Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin

Discours Roselyne Bachelot 24 septembre 2010 from humbertsy on Vimeo.

Coming soon: the text of the speech in English.

Gay Games veteran honored by her high school

Ross Forman in the Windy City Times reports:

Jessica Andrasko was shocked, to put it mildly, when her former high school volleyball coach messaged her on Facebook that the school's Hall of Fame committee needed her address.

Andrasko replied, "Are you serious????"

Sure enough, Andrasko, 37, who now lives in Bolingbrook, is being inducted into the Hall of Fame Friday, Oct. 1, at her alma mater, Sweet Home High School, where she graduated in 1991.

"I was completely honored," when informed, she said.

Andrasko played varsity volleyball, basketball and softball all four years in high school, and also played club volleyball for the Cheetah Volleyball Club all four years of high school. And, she was a member of the Empire State Games gold medal team all four years.

"Most people say volleyball was my best sport, but I say I was better at basketball," said Andrasko, who was the leading scorer and rebounder in basketball when she graduated.


Andrasko also was a National Honor Society member, and graduated with honors. She received the Principal's Athletic Award, the William Schwartzman Senior Athlete of the Year award and the Amherst Chamber of Commerce Athlete of the Year award. And she was ranked ninth academically in her graduating class of 309.

" [ The Hall of Fame induction ] means a great deal to me because sports have always been a huge part of my life," Andrasko said. "Playing sports taught me that 'I should never wish I could have, would have or should have done something in my life. No regrets in anything I do and always work my butt off because I may not get that second chance to be in that situation again!'"


Andrasko played two years for the Chicago Force football team, has played in local gay sports leagues for 11 years, including indoor volleyball, beach volleyball, softball, flag football and dodgeball. She is currently the director for women's indoor volleyball for the Chicago Metropolitan Sports Association, and was named CMSA Athlete of the Year. She participated in the 1998 Gay Games in Amsterdam ( bronze medal in volleyball ) , the 2006 Gay Games Chicago ( volleyball ) , and the 2010 Gay Games in Cologne, Germany ( volleyball; lost in the bronze medal match ) . Plus, she plays basketball, softball and volleyball for various leagues in the suburbs, and plays on a traveling tournament softball team based out of the Elgin/St. Charles area.

Read the full article HERE.

Kate Rowe on competing with friends

Kate and Paulette
Kate and Hlengiwe
I met Hlengiwe Buthelezi at the Federation of Gay Games annual meeting in Cape Town in 2008, where she was a dynamic and motivating presence. Since then we have kept in regular contact, as the FGG has supported Hlengiwe in starting up a sports group in her township in Durban (now KZN LGBT Recreation).

I saw Hlengiwe again at the 2009 annual meeting in Cologne, where she was a delegate for our South African member organisation, TOGS, and where she won the FGG Volunteer of the Year for her work.

I have supported her in a small way by supplying running shoes, and we always said we wanted to run together. It's not very easy to arrange, since I'm in Sydney and she's in Durban, but our dream finally came true in Cologne.

While there, Hlengiwe had a stomach bug and I was exhausted from my duties as FGG VP for External Affairs, for which I was dealing with our awards ceremony and working with our Gay Games Ambassadors. So when we met up at the 6km mark of the 10K run, we decided to support each other in our bid for the finish line. We both managed to keep the pace up and it was a magic moment to share the rapture of the crowd as we crossed the line hand in hand.

I am fortunate to have Hlengiwe as a friend, thanks to the Gay Games. This is the true spirit of how the Gay Games bring together people who would never otherwise meet.

In Cologne I also had the joy of riding again against Paulette Meggoe. Paulette and I first met at the Gay Games in New York in 1994, which seems such a long time ago now! It was my first time at the Gay Games, and I earned a bronze medal as part of the cycling team time trial with an ad hoc team which included Paulette.

Since then, Paulette and I have attended every Games, have competed against each other, and have become fast friends.  Although we live on oppsite sides of the world (Paulette in New York and me in Sydney), we have managed to see each other outside the Games, and even competed together in the New York Marathon and the Jaimacia Marathon.

Paulette is a most generous woman and always shares her experience with cyclists new to the Gay Games.  This is the spririt and joy of being involved in our  global family.

FGG Ambassador takes silver in cycling world championships

Federation of Gay Games Ambassador Judith Arndt took second in the Women's Elite division of the Union Cyciste Internationale Road Time Trials held on 29 September 2010 in Geelong, Victoria, Australia, behind Britain's Emma Pooley.

Congratulations to Judith on this fine performance!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Video of Sara Waddell Lewinstein at FGG Gay Games VIII reception

Results of French survey on homophobia in sport

Veryfriendly reports on a survey carried out by sports psychology consultants Cabinet MB on the attitude of athletes to homosexuals. Read Veryfriendly's story HERE, and see the report on the firm's website HERE.

In short,  The main results show that athletes do demonstrate greater homophobic attitudes than non-athletes, in particular for male homosexuality. Gay men are the victims of the most discrimination, while lesbians are relatively well accepted by athletes, both male and female. They observed no effect of the type of sport, or between team sports and individual sports.

A broader study is to take place with the regional administration for youth and sport of Aquitaine to attempt to see if there is any effect from the sport practiced, the type of sport, and the level of practice.

Monday, September 27, 2010

FGG Ambassador supports "Dog Tag Project"

Outsports reports:

The Dog Tag Project was started by Matt Freeman, a former executive at Here! media. The project’s aim is to put names and faces on the fight against Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. They have teamed up with various former military personnel who have been discharged by the military under Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, and they sell replicas of the dog tags of those people (including Dan Choi).

We brought some dog tags to Cologne for the Gay Games to spread the word about the project, and the athletes there were excited to wear the tags. [Photo of FGG Ambassador David Kopay wearing a dog tag.] And you can buy your own dog tag replicas from the Project; proceeds benefit groups fighting Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

For all links, visit the original Outsports story HERE.

Results of UK survey on homophobia and football

We've written about this study before, and here's an interesting presentation of the results.

A large-scale study by academics at the university found that 80% of football fans are "relaxed" about the presence of gay footballers in the English leagues and would "welcome more honesty from players about their sexuality". The research, by Ellis Cashmore, professor of culture, media and sport at Staffordshire, and his colleague Dr Jamie Cleland, senior lecturer in sociology, involved 3,000 football fans, professional players, referees and managers giving their views on homophobia.

Cashmore explains that the inspiration came from claims such as Clifford's that football was steeped in homophobia: "We thought we would put this to the test," he says. "And in fact we found that most fans are embarrassed by the assumption that they are rabidly homophobic. They emphatically state that the only feature of a player that interests them is whether or not he can play. As one fan put it, 'I'd rather have a gay player who can play football than a straight player who can't'."

Read the full article HERE.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Vancouver magazine looks back at Gay Games III

The magazine "Living Out Vancouver" recently ran a wonderful article saluting the 20th Anniversary of 1990's Gay Games III. This was the first time that the Gay Games was held outside San Francisco and the USA. This article gives the history of how the event came to be in the Pacific Northwest and includes a fascinating description of the political climate of the late 1980s. The photos (some of which were sourced from the Gay Games Photo Archives) really bring that magical week of August 1990 to life.

If you were in Vancouver in 1990, this article will bring back great memories. If you didn't participate in Gay Games III, you can read about a very important chapter in the history of the Gay Games movement.

Download the article on Gay Games III HERE.

Equipe France reception at the ministry of health and sport

Minister of health and sport Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin, FSGL President Bruno Aussenac, FSGL 1st VP Christelle Foucault
Mme Bachelot, Emy Ritt, co-president FGG

Emy Ritt (FGG), Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin, Bruno Aussenac (FSGL), Marc Naimark (FGG)

On Friday 24 September, the French medal winners from Gay Games VIII were the guests of Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin, minister for health and sport, at her ministry in Paris.

During the reception, Emy Ritt, co-president of the FGG, presented Mme Bachelot with a participation medal from Gay Games VIII, as a sign of the thanks of the Federation for her support of Equipe France and the LGBT sports movement.

We'll have video and the texts of the speeches made very soon, but in any case, this was a first for LGBT athletes in France, and a great honor that was appreciated by all present, and those who couldn't make it, in particular our friends from the provinces.  A particular word of thanks to Ronan Le Joubioux, an advisor to Mme Bachelot, and a friend to the fight against homophobia in sport and in society.

See these articles (in French) from Têtu and Yagg.

Two women lead UK Sport

Interesting to note that both the chair and CEO of UK Sport are women. Congratulations to Ms. Nicholl!

UK Sport 23 September 2010

Liz Nicholl OBE has been appointed to the role of Chief Executive Officer at UK Sport. She is currently Chief Operating Officer, having joined the organisation in 1999. She replaces John Steele, who left on 30 July to become the new CEO of the Rugby Football Union, and will start her new role with immediate effect.

As CEO, Liz Nicholl will be responsible for leading the organisation as it works to maximise British athlete success at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, as well as seeking to ensure that both the best structure and resources available to high performance sport are in place in the years beyond.

Speaking about the new CEO, Baroness Sue Campbell CBE, Chair of UK Sport, said:

“I am absolutely delighted that Liz will be our new CEO. From an outstanding field of nearly 50 candidates, she demonstrated that she had the best mix of skills, experience and knowledge to lead the organisation at this vital time. As well as seeking to ensure that we continue to deliver against our performance and international responsibilities in the build up to London 2012, UK Sport is engaged in significant discussions around resources and the structure of sporting delivery in this country in the future. Having worked with Liz for many years, I am convinced she is the right person to lead these discussions, and will ensure the best result for British sport whilst leading an outstanding high quality team.”

Liz Nicholl
Liz Nicholl added: “I feel very privileged to be selected to take on this role at such a significant and exciting time for British sport. I look forward to building on John’s fantastic work and leading the world class team of people here at UK Sport, who are totally committed to developing a world leading high performance system to support success in 2012 and beyond. We are also working hard to position the UK to secure other great sporting events in future. The current economic climate and proposed structural changes present us all with some challenges but our clear focus will ensure that we remain on track.”

Rod Carr, UK Sport Board Member and a member of the Appointment Panel, said: “We interviewed a number of high quality candidates, but Liz stood out as the right person to lead UK Sport at this critical time. Liz’ experience means she is perfectly placed not only to drive forward UK Sport in the run-up to London 2012, but also help ensure proposed changes to the high performance system in the UK have the needs of our sports and athletes at their heart.”

Hugh Robertson, Minister for Sport, said: “Liz Nicholl’s appointment will bring experience and continuity to UK Sport at a crucial time in the build-up to London 2012. Her key role is to deliver podium success but she will also have to manage the outcome of the Comprehensive Spending Review and play a key role in bringing together UK Sport and Sport England post 2012.”

Friday, September 24, 2010

Sport climbing gold

Sport Climbing is new to the Gay Games. Here's a video of a gold medal effort from Gay Games VIII:

Tracy Baim interview: Windy City Times 25th anniversary

A great ChicagoPride.com interview with Tracy Baim, a leader of Chicago Games Inc. and the winner of the 2009 FGG Legacy Award for Media and Journalism, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Windy City Times. Look for the special anniversary edition of the WCT on September 29.

For any queer Chicagoan first arriving in the city, it would be difficult to understate the impact of those early signs of our community's presence, particularly for those of us who arrived in the Windy City on the heels of a small-town upbringing. Whether it be the rainbow pylons lining Halsted Street in Boystown or simply another gay or lesbian couple holding hands while crossing the street, the marked presence of “people like you” is a comforting privilege to those who call Chicago home.

And for many, the nearly ubiquitous newsstands housing the Windy City Times, Chicago's premier LGBT news publication, that are scattered about the city represent that very same feeling of belonging to something bigger - to a community, to a movement. Or, at the very least, a welcome alternative to being stuck reading the Red Eye during our El commute.

For these reasons and many more, the publication's 25th anniversary, being marked with a special issue hitting the streets Wednesday, Sept. 29, is significant. At a time where LGBT publications nationwide are bleeding revenue and shuttering, the Windy City Times has managed to survive even the bleakest of outlooks, all while tenaciously documenting both our community's highs and lows.

With her publication's silver anniversary fast approaching, Windy City Times Media Group publisher Tracy Baim spoke with ChicagoPride.com about the publication she helped co-found in 1985 and how it has continued to persevere a tumultuous industry for longer than Gaga has been alive.

Continue reading HERE.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Latest Wellington Outgames newsletter

Read it HERE.

Team Nashville medal winners

With over 10,000 participants, the 2010 Gay Games, held in Cologne, Germany from July 31-Aug. 6, featured the athletic gifts of a few local
Partners Sam Felker (L, bronze) and Keith Little (R, one gold and two bronze) were both medalists at this year's Gay Games.

Partners Sam Felker (L, bronze) and Keith Little (R, one gold and two bronze) were both medalists at this year's Gay Games.
talents. Six Nashville residents competed in the quadrennial event, with three athletes earning a total of seven medals in various track and field events.

Keith Little earned medals in all three events he entered: javelin, shotput and hammer events. A winner of javelin gold in the two previous Gay Games (2002 Chicago and 2006 Sydney), he repeated that victory and also achieved his own personal goals in the hammer and shotput, finishing third in both contests.

Continue reading HERE.

A Jamaican in Cologne

Here is an extract from a report from a Jamaican participant in Gay Games VIII:

For the remainder of the week, I had choir practice until the day of the opening ceremony which was Saturday August 1 at FC Cologne Stadium. I participated in the parade of countries with my friend, and then after walking in with our Jamaica sign, I left her to join up with the choir to perform.

I felt proud that out small nation was represented despite the problems of homophobia.


I visited the gay villages at both Rudolphplatz and Neumarkt. There was a women’s place at Neumarkt, where I hung out as well and had cappuccinos and flirted or just read. I walked on the “Walk of Fame” (with a red carpet and hugelounging cushions no less) which was close to where we stayed and was mainly for the gay boys but was still an option for a few of the ladies. (I basically used it as a short cut to get to the Supermarket)

Read the whole report HERE.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Dutch TV report on Gay Games VIII sailing

FSGL produces report on the participation of women athletes

Maria Salvietti (l) with FSGL President Bruno Aussenac and
junior minister for sport Rama Yade
Maria Salvietti, VP of the FSGL and one of its two delegates to the Federation of Gay Games, has carried out a survey of the approximately 30 member clubs of the Fédération sportive gaie et lesbienne. The purpose of this first survey was to establish a baseline and to begin to establish best practices in attracting and retaining women athletes.

The report on this survey (in French) can be found HERE.

A very imperfect Google translation to English can be found HERE.

A message to all member organizations: What are your policies regarding the participation of women? We would appreciate being able to share your experiences with other FGG member organizations. More generally, we are keen to learn what special projects you are carrying out, alone or in partnership with third parties.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Report on Panteresports 2010

A report from qSPORT's Zeljko Blace on this year's Panteresports tournament in Barcelona, with a focus on volleyball:

There is no city that identifies with international sport as much as Barcelona. Beyond the fame of its football and basketball clubs, and the huge sport events that take place there each year, Barcelona will historically remain as a city that not only captured the Olympic spirit during Olympic games, but used it to re-develop and re-brand itself as city of Culture and Sports on the global map, and that has become a favorite venue for countless international conferences, fairs and shows.

Panteres Grogues (PG), or the "yellow panthers", started as informal beach volleyball group in 1994, founded by German and French expats living in Barcelona. It has exploded in past years in size, diversity of sports, and number of participants. After hosting the first EuroGames in the South of Europe in 2008 (with an amazing effort by a dedicated team of organizers), PG became by far the biggest Mediterranean LGBTQ club with over 100 volleyball players at all levels. Coming to a tournament here can compare to to no other place in Europe in terms of local participation (except maybe Milan at its best).

EGLSF earns EU funding for 'Football for Equality' project

The European Gay and Lesbian Sports Federation are pleased to announce that they have received funding from the European Commission’s Directorate – General Justice Freedom and Security. The funding is part of a transnational project ‘Football For Equality’ headed by Austrian anti-racism organization, VIDC.

Tanja Walther Ahrens, award winning EGLSF campaigner explains: "This the second time we have been successful in securing funding from the EC! This is great news as this project will build on past work and will help people understand that it still is so important to increase the visibility of lesbians and gay men in sport and to counteract homophobia in many different and creative ways."

Tanja Walther Ahrens
The project will involve a number of initiatives, which include an anti-homophobia campaign during the 2011 Women’s World Cup and the UEFA EURO 2012. Specific actions include an art exhibition to be held in Berlin, which will examine the contribution of lesbians to women’s football and awareness-raising activities for football fans embassies during 2012 in Warsaw, which will include the observation of anti-discrimination action days, training for embassy staff and the production of LGBT fans guides.

The project contains a strong youth focus and includes a Football For Equality Tournament for young people in Slovenia and the introduction of the anti-homophobia message in the Mondiali Antirazzisti (Anti-Racist World Cup) in Italy during 2011.

Walther Ahrens concludes: "This is a unique opportunity to make a positive difference to football across Europe."

Team Philly homecoming party TONIGHT

Team Philadelphia Homecoming Party at Brauhaus Schmitz 21 Sept 2010 | 7:30PM

Reminder: Get your Köslch fix at Team Philadelphia’s Gay Games Homecoming Party. Team Philadelphia will be honoring our Gay Games participants with a Homecoming Party on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 starting at 7:30 PM at Brauhaus Schmitz on South Street. This will be a great place to celebrate our personal best and share our Cologne and Gay Games winning experiences. Brauhaus Schmitz has offered us their mezzanine level which provides a fantastic, semi-private area for our group to convene (and party). Medalists and Participants are strongly encouraged to wear their medals! PROST! Info HERE.

Upcoming Team Philadelphia events

OutFest 10 Oct 2010 | Noon-7PM

Celebrate ‘National Coming-Out Day’ Philadelphia style with the annual OutFest celebration in the heart of the Gayborhood. Vendor/ Group registration is available through the link below. Team Philadelphia will have a table – stop by to say hello and hear about what is planned for the coming year. If your group is not hosting an individual table/ space, feel free to make arrangements to have your team literature displayed at the Team Philadelphia booth. Contact Kurt Douglass (Co-Chair) at kdoug331@gmail.com .

Info HERE.

AIDS Walk Philly 17 Oct 2010

With cutbacks in government dollars, programs are often under-funded. Your donations are needed to support organizations providing HIV/AIDS awareness, prevention education, counseling and testing and care services for people living with HIV/AIDS.

Team Philadelphia is sponsoring a team for this year’s AIDS Walk/ Run. Follow the link below to register under the Team Philadelphia team (Team Philadelphia Sports). Note: All walkers/ runners must first create an individual user account before they can register for the walk as an individual or a team. Walk registration begins at 7:30 AM (Donation drop-off/ Team Photos)

For you FrontRunners… AIDS Fund Philly also sponsors a 5K Run. The AIDS Run is an official USATF certified 5K route on Martin Luther King Drive and begins at 8AM (registration opens at 7AM)

Info HERE.

Sports Week

Back by popular demand – Sports Week is being planned for June 2011 in concert with Philly Pride week events. We would like to hear from you about what events you would like to see offered. Get your thoughts and ideas to Team Philadelphia so we can include them in the planning process. Contact Kurt Douglass (Co-Chair) at kdoug331@gmail.com for further information and discussion.

Cheer SF presentation of scholarship funds

On Tuesday, September 28th at 9 p.m. at their practice facility in Emeryville, Cheer San Francisco will be presenting representatives of the FGG with a check for USD 8,000 for the FGG Scholarship Fund. This is money raised by Cheer SF, Cheer LA and Cheer NY in during Gay Games VIII in Cologne.

Thanks to all who worked those red buckets, and to all who gave so generously!

It's never too late to give: visit gaymes.info/scholarships1 for more info and to donate.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Wellington-bound activist-athlete arrested

From GayNZ.com:

A Nepalese athlete who is planning to compete in the Wellington Outgames has been arrested in a demonstration in Kathmandu.

Roshan Mahato was among five dozen LGBT activists were nabbed from outside the official Government building Singha Durbar on Tuesday, while waiting for an appointment with Home Minister Bhim Rawal.

They had been given verbal confirmation of an appointment with the Home Minister, who they hoped to meet to express their concern over the government's refusal to issue citizenship certificates to members of third gender, despite a 2007 directive to do so from the Supreme Court.

There are over 100,000 people of third gender in Nepal. Nepalnews.com reports they are deprived of various facilities like making a passport, going abroad for work or study, buying insurance or property, due to lack of a citizenship certificate.

Police say the group was arrested for staging a hunger-strike in front of Singha Durbar, which is a prohibited area for demonstrations and strikes.

They were detained for several hours in police custody.

Mahato, a runner and passionate LGBTI rights advocate, says they were kept for four hours without food and water or any place to sit and police tried to take their cell phones and laptops. He says while they were in custody a number of journalists and human rights advocates came and took pictures and interviewed them and senior police.

"I felt proud while I was spending my time in custody. Because many journalists and human rights advocates came to support us. Our LGBTI friends also came there to give us some food and water. When my friends told me our friends had beaten in the same custody last month then I was scared," he tells GayNZ.com.

Mahato was not charged with any crime and has since been able to meet with Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal, along with more than 20 LGBTI people.

"The meeting was about one hour with him," he says. "We addressed our problems with the Prime Minister and also asked why the Home Minister is stopping giving citizenship to third genders. We also addressed why we were arrested while we were waiting to Prime Minister and Home Minister."

Mahato is a sociology masters student and is planning to compete in the 5km run at the Wellington Outgames in March – but he is also very excited about attending the games' human rights conference.

RealJock member Billy medals in diving

Photo: Treasure Island Media
RealJock feedback:

It was a great Gay Games for two of our members, Coltsd (actual name: Billy) and MarathonManiac (real name: David). Both won gold medals, Billy in diving, and David in (not so surprisingly) marathon. We spoke to both of them about the experience, and here's what we learned.

Billy competed in three diving events: the 1- and 3-meter springboard as well as the platform. He won gold medals in all three. Pretty impressive, right? And he's only at the beginning of competing in this sport. "I'm actually new to diving," he tells us. "I've always been interested in learning and I just started last fall. I was a nationally ranked gymnast when I was younger (I'm 43 now), and the muscle memory for flipping and twisting is still there so I'm picking up quickly." We'll say—hard to see how you could pick it up any quicker. And he's been having success all year leading up to Cologne. "In May I competed in a national Masters competition and had a great meet (two bronzes) so I thought I might give the Games a shot. I'm so glad I did because it was an amazing experience."


That means that there's no reason not to think about going yourself—a point Billy's own experience highlights: "I highly recommend going to Cleveland in 2014 to anyone training for a sport. Or like me, you can pick a new sport you've always fantasized about doing. It's four years from now, so go for it! I'll see you there." In fact, you could also be like Billy and find sponsoring, in his case through Treasure Island Media. "They have been and continue to be incredibly supportive in helping me pursue my competitive diving goals."

Continue reading HERE.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Gay Games VIII Cheerleaders raise USD 16,000 in donations at Gay Games VIII

Everyone who was in Cologne for Gay Games VIII knows that the Cheerleaders had a MAJOR presence there. The biggest of these groups was the Gold-Medal winning CHEER San Francisco. Together with cheerleaders from CHEER Los Angeles and CHEER New York, they collaboratively raised money for their highly successful "Cheer For Life" mission, by appearing with their red buckets at numerous events. Together, these three cheer teams are known as the Pride Cheerleading Association. At the 2006 Chicago Gay Games, over $4,000 was raised for the local "Chicago House" charity. Four years before that in Sydney at Gay Games VI, these cheerleaders raised over USD 3,000 for the Bobby Goldsmith Foundation.

Amazingly, these dedicated Cheerleaders raised over USD 16,000 in cash. Half of this money was donated to AIDS-Hilfe Köln, one of Germany's largest AIDS service organizations. The other half of the funds are being donated to the Federation of Gay Games' Scholarship Fund. The formal presentation of these funds will be made on 28 September.

One of the members of Cheer San Francisco is Craig Herrera who also appears on a local TV station as a weather reporter. Upon returning from Gay Games VIII, Craig appeared on his news telecast and talked openly about performing in Cologne. He also included some video footage from the Closing Ceremony. Check out the YouTube video below.

The FGG is delighted with the amazing effort of these cheerleaders, and the impact their generosity will have on future underserved individuals who will be able to experience the Gay Games. Cheer San Francisco have participated in every one of the eight Gay Games, and while their contributions have always been notable, never have they been as notable as at the recent Cologne Gay Games. Thank you to all the cheerleaders who made this happen!

Matthew Mitcham on channel 9's "60 Minutes"

Newsmagazine 60 Minutes featured Matthew in a story on role models making it easier for young LGBT people to be out. Matthew appears from minute 7.  Watch HERE.

Canal Plus story on Yoann Lemaire

Starting at minute 26, a story on Yoann Lemaire, including footage from the Fête de l'Humanité, where Yoann took part in a panel discussion on homophobia in sport, an interview with Rama Yade, junior minister for sport. View (in French) HERE.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Congratulations to Vice Chancellor Westerwelle and Michael Mronz

The FGG wishes the very best to Vice Chancellor Westerwelle and Mr. Mronz and takes advantage of this opportunity to again thank Mr. Westerwelle for his support of Gay Games VIII.

On Top:

German tabloid Bild is reporting that Guido Westerwelle, the country's openly gay foreign minister, has “married” his 43-year-old partner, event manager Michael Mronz.

With the headline Secret Wedding, the paper reported that the couple entered a civil partnership in Westerwelle's home town of Bonn on Friday. The ceremony was presided over by Bonn Mayor Juergen Nimptsch and only close friends and family attended, the newspaper said.

Civil partnerships offer gay and lesbian couples some but no all the rights of marriage.


Westerwelle presided over last month's opening ceremony for the 2010 Gay Games in Cologne's RheinEnergie Stadium.

Auf Deutsch: Center.TV's Gay Games VIII videoportal

You can view a selection of video reports on Gay Games VIII from Center.TV in Cologne HERE.

Among the stories:
  • Football at Gay Games VIII with interview of Andreas Stiene from Cream-Team Cologne
  • Bodybuilding at Gay Games VIII with interview of Dirk Kau of the NAC
  • Taylor Dayne, Facing a Miracle
  • Interviews with Guido Westerwelle
  • Pre-opening ceremony report
  • Interview with volunteers Christian Skaar and Philipp Lischke (FGG 2010 Volunteer of the Year)
  • Interview with CEO of Games Cologne, Annette Wachter
  • Interview with Games Cologne Ambassador Nicole Struse, table tennis champion
  • Logistics at Gay Games VIII, interview with Christoph Gaspers-Carouge
  • Volunteers at Gay Games VIII, interview with volunteer director Sascha Heullen and Stefan Huelshorst

Melbourne medal winners

From Melbourne Community Voice:

Sharks get sweet scent of Cologne
The Glamourhead Sharks, Melbourne's GLBTI Swimming Squad, scooped the pool at the Gay Games in Cologne.

The team of 16 swimmers took eight gold medals, eight silver and five bronze medals, coming twelfth over all out of 118 clubs.

John Marriott was one of the stand-out swimmers, taking out gold and Gay Games records for each of his five individual swims.

Anke Kohfahl also achieved gold along with a Gay Games record for her 200 backstroke.

Anke also took the opportunity of being home in her native Germany to marry her partner, Mandy Gregory in her hometown of Cuxhaven.

James Cahill and Alan Godfrey brought home gold in the 50 Breaststroke and 200 Backstroke respectively.

And read more on the Glamourheads' performance in the Southern Star HERE.

QSAM homecoming 19 September

FGG member Queer Sports Alliance Melbourne (QSAM) is holding its Cologne homecoming party Sunday 19 September from 2pm-5pm at DT's Hotel,164 Church Street Richmond.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

London 2012 diversity manager wins Peter Robertson Award

2010 Tom Waddell Award winners Brent Nicholson Earle and Sara Waddell Lewinstein with Stephen Frost
Congratulations to Stephen!

Stephen Frost, Head of Diversity and Inclusion for the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games, will be the third recipient of the annual Peter Robertson Award for Equality and Diversity Champions. Stephen will be honoured for his significant contributions to diversity and inclusion at two special receptions later in Washington, DC and London.

The Peter Robertson Award was created to recognise those 'unsung heroes' who - like Peter - demonstrate profound personal and professional commitment to the value that diversity and equality bring to their organisations and to their communities.

Candidates for the award were nominated by peers and co-workers in private and public sector organisations that belong to the Global Equality, Diversity, & Inclusion Networks, and nominations from around the world reflected the global nature of the ORC Networks business. The winner and finalists were selected by a panel of equality and diversity thought-leaders based on demonstrated overall success in their professional work over a substantial period of time, innovation in the field, dedication to the principles of diversity and inclusion, and leadership. Announcing the panel’s decision to award the honour to Stephen, Patrice Hall Global Leader Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Practice noted his longstanding work in the areas of disability, age, and gay and lesbian rights, his strong collaboration with community and industry groups for the benefit of the economically disadvantaged, and his entrepreneurial style that breaks down boundaries and enables real change, even in unreceptive environments.

Yoann Lemaire: support from IGLFA and EGLSF

Both FGG member organization the International Gay and Lesbian Football Association and the European Gay and Lesbian Sports Federation have added their support to Yoann Lemaire, the French football player refused a license to return to his team after denouncing his club's homophobic behavior.

EGLSF co-president Lou Englefield:

"I know our members throughout Europe will want to support Paris Foot Gay in their actions to call FC CHOOZ to account. The failure of this club to deal with homophobia and to make their club safe for all players is an issue of concern for all of us and in particular for the sport of football. We are delighted that Paris Foot Gay is being supported in their action by President of the French Football Professional League, Frederic Thieriez. Whilst homophobia still pervades football in many countries, it is hugely encouraging to see those at the head of footballing authorities give their backing to campaigns for equality & inclusion. "

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Celebrate FVV's 25th anniversary!

FVV - 25 years: It's time to celebrate! FVV was founded 25 years ago in October of 1985. And now in October 2010, we will celebrate our silver anniversary!

We have rented the CK-Studio (Alte Gasse 5, Frankfurt) on Friday evening, October 1st, starting at 8 p.m. Our official silver anniversary celebration for invited guests will be held there from 8:00 - 10:00 p.m.: a champagne reception with cake and canapés. Who's invited? All FVV members and our honored guests from the political, sport, press and gay communities.

At 10:00 p.m. we will open the doors of the CK-Club to the general public and celebrate together with the gay scene of Frankfurt to the sounds of the same DJ from our boat party... it'll be a great time!

More info HERE.

FGG's Paul Oostenbrug inducted into Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame

The Federation of Gay Games is very happy to learn that Paul Oostenbrug, Federation Vice President for Membership, will be inducted into the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame.

Congratulations to Paul! This is indeed a well-deserved honor.

From the
Windy City Times:

Celebrating Its 20th Year, Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame Inducts 11 Individuals and 4 Organizations

The Chicago Commission on Human Relations' Advisory Council on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Issues has released the names of 11 individuals and four organizations to be inducted in November 2010 into the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame, the only known government-sponsored hall of fame that honors members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender ( LGBT ) community, announced Chairman and Commissioner Dana V. Starks.

The chosen nominees will be inducted at the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame's 20th annual ceremony, which will take place from 5:30 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 10, 2010, in Sidney R. Yates Gallery at the Chicago Cultural Center, 77 E. Randolph St. The reception begins at 5:30 p.m., and the program is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

"Chicago is a city of many faces, and the LGBT community is an important part of that diversity. The community is thriving and moving forward, helping to build a strong social and economic foundation for Chicago," said Mayor Richard M. Daley.

"The rich contributions made to Chicago by its various communities are important to Chicago's quality of life," said Commissioner Starks. "It is for that reason that we are pleased to recognize lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals and their allies with these Hall of Fame awards each year."

The Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame was established in 1991 under the auspices of the Advisory Council, with continuing support from the Chicago Commission on Human Relations and Mayor Daley. Its purpose is to recognize the achievements of LGBT Chicagoans, their contributions to the development of the city, and the help they have received from others.

Those inducted fall into one of three categories: individual, organization, or friend of the community. Nominees represent Chicago's entire sexual-minority community, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Chicagoans, past, present, living, and dead, as well as those who have supported or assisted the community.

A committee of prior inductees makes each year's selections from nominations submitted by members of the public.

Those honored in 2010 [include]:

Paul G. Oostenbrug, 60, runner and community volunteer, for his long and dedicated service to Team Chicago, which takes LGBT Chicagoans to the Gay Games, and for his involvement on the boards of the Federation of Gay Games and Chicago House, a local AIDS service agency.

West Hollywood, CA commendations

On October 4, the city of West Hollywood, California will be presenting commendations to West Hollywood Aquatics on its latest achievements at Gay Games VIII, and its continued presence in making West Hollywood America's Progressive City.

Also present will be Sara Waddell Lewinstein, who was raised in West Hollywood, who will receive a commendation for being honored with the 2010 Tom Waddell Award.

London 2012 volunteer registration opens

Update: We've received our first reports from candidates who successfully completed their registration and application process. Good luck!

The Federation of Gay Games is supporting efforts of the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (LOCOG) to make the 2012 Summer Olympics diverse and inclusive.

LOCOG is keen that all aspects of the Games respect its commitment to diversity and inclusion, and this includes its volunteer force.

To do this, LOCOG has reached out to the FGG to support the recruitment of LGBT sports volunteers.

Applications  are now open to the public for generalist roles
IMPORTANT: Do not delay applying! Registration may be closed within a matter of days, depending on the number of applicants.



* Make sure you use the Diversity and Inclusion section of the application to indicate that you are applying as an LGBT volunteer.
* To request a code that you can enter with your application that will flag your application as coming from the FGG, write immediately to london2012@gaygames.org.


  • 15 September 2010: Applications open to the public for generalist roles and continue for specialist roles
  • December 2010: LOCOG will start inviting short-listed applicants to a selection event*
  • February 2011-February 2012: Selection events will take place and all invited applicants will be interviewed.
  • Late 2011: LOCOG will start sending out offers to successful applicants.
  • February 2012: Orientation training will begin.
  • March 2012: Role-specific training will begin.
  • April 2012: Distribution of uniforms and accreditation passes will begin.
  • June 2012: Venue training will begin.

*This is a mandatory step, which includes an interview. It will take place at one of several UK locations.

You are responsible for your own expenses, including for travel, for all events and training sessions as well as at the Games themselves. We regret that this will limit the number of members of the FGG family who will be able to volunteer, but encourage those who can do this to consider applying.


We recommend that you visit the site now so as to become familiar with the roles and responsibilities of volunteers, and to make filing your application faster and easier.

And please let us know what happens! We would love to share the stories of LGBT volunteers at the 2012 Olympics from start to finish. Write london2012@gaygames.org with your stories, suggestions, and any other feedback about the 2012 Olympics.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Are you Compete magazine's athlete of the year?

Compete magazine is pleased to accept nominations for its 2010 Athlete of the Year Award.

The following criteria will be used to select the 2010 Athlete of the Year:

• Commitment to personal achievement
• Active participation in an individual or team sport
• Commitment to supporting/encouraging others in sports
• Commitment to the GLBT sporting community and/or GLBT community

Your nomination submission needs to include the following:

1. Complete nomination application
2. An essay of 250-500 words describing the importance of sports in your life
3. Minimum of one letter of reference

Compete magazine is honored to have Ben Cohen, Chad Allen, Doria Biddle, Blake Skjellerup, and their own Eric Carlyle selecting the 2010 Athlete of the Year.


All info HERE.

John Amaechi: "big, black and dangerous"?

John Amaechi at Gay Games VIII
For those who haven't been following the story on FGG Ambassaor John Amaechi's Facebook page or Twitter feeds, you can find a summary of the affair in this BBC News article. Here's an extract:

Former basketball star John Amaechi is considering legal action against a bar in Manchester's gay village that refused to let him in. The 39-year-old said a doorman at Crunch on Canal Street described him as "big, black and could be trouble".

Mr Amaechi, who was out with friends on Friday, has complained to the council and demanded an apology from the bar.

Crunch said entry was refused on safety grounds and called the allegations "outrageous and unfounded". Mr Amaechi's office has written to the club to seek an explanation for why he was refused entry.

Continue reading HERE.

Roger Brigham on Gay Games VIII (part 2)

Photo Mathias Ebert via EDGE
From the second installment of Roger Brigham's reflections on Gay Games VIII (see the first one HERE):

This year in Cologne was a different story. My husband Eduardo, who made his sports debut at the 2006 Games with a silver medal in martial arts, was home this go round taking care of our dogs. I was rooming with 17 other grapplers on the east side of Cologne, a Spartan dormitory setting suitable to our minimalist needs. I was responsible with making sure things ran smoothly, liaising with tournament officials, and coaching my teammates. And, my health markedly worse than it had been four years earlier, restricting my ability to train on the mat, made it questionable that I would get on the mat at all on tournament day. And if I did, I had already promised my significant other that it would be the last match of my career. So it was now and then never.

The day of my tournament, I was dizzy and my right hip was painful and weak. I had concentrated on building up my leg strength coming into Cologne, but I can never tell when one or the other is going to go on the fritz. This would not be my day for victory.

My two matches went by in a blur. I was matched against two very experienced veteran wrestlers on a mission and they deserved the wins. The second match ended with a ferocious cross face that fractured my nose. I went down tough, but I went down.

Twenty years ago, a loss like that would have torn me up. But this time there was no time to grieve: I had earned my team one point, I got to coach all of my teammates and all of them won, and the tournament, though small (40 wrestlers) ran well and brought together wrestlers from Australia to Europe who had not had a chance to face each other for eight years.

Better for me was watching the performances of wrestlers I have worked with from other clubs the past seven years: athletes who entered wrestling filled with doubts who were now cranking out successful, technical wrestling--confident wrestling. Better for me were the quiet moments when they thanked me for sharing my knowledge, for encouraging them through the years.

It was a feeling of mutual respect, of gratitude, of appreciation, of camaraderie on par with the greatest moments in my varsity career. Sports doesn’t get more powerful than that.

A moment worthy of Olympus, but not for the gods or the elite. For everyone.

Read in full HERE.