|Ambassador Philip Murphy, FGG co-presidents Emy Ritt (Paris) and Kurt Dahl (Chicago), and Deputy Mayor Angela Spizig|
Kurt Dahl will never forget three magical moments from Gay Games VIII, held this past August in Cologne, Germany.
There was, for one, singer Taylor Dayne surrounded by fire at the Opening Ceremony, doing what she does best.
There was the moment by Dahl's partner, Jeff Clark, who proved with his softball teammates that they had the best team in the tournament. They won the gold medal—and Dahl put the medal around his husband's neck.
Then there was the day he spent with the American ambassador to Germany and the Cologne vice mayor, touring the venues.
"The Games in Cologne were amazing," said Dahl, who celebrated his 49th birthday Aug. 8—the day after the eight-day sports and cultural extravaganza ended. "I was very happy with the Games Cologne organization. Most of the organization was made up of volunteers; [ there were ] very [ few ] paid staff and there was great deal of work. The team pulled it off and I am very proud of their accomplishments. The city was amazing and the weather was perfect—sunny, but cool. The venues were good and many of the venues were close together, so a participant and spectators could see many different sports all within walking distance.
"There is not one thing I would say I was disappointed in."
That includes the turnout, which numbered about 9,500 participants from 65 countries.
"Given the economic conditions and the strong Euro, I was very pleased with the turnout," he said. "The participation was truly global."
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