CHICAGO, March 3 (UPI) -- Chicago will host the 2006 gay Games featuring 25 competitions in events ranging from basketball and badminton to figure skating, promoters said.
The Windy City beat out rival Los Angeles for the quadrennial event that attracts about 12,000 participants and 250,000 spectators. Despite the name, Gay Games IV is open to all people without regard to sexual preference or HIV status, officials with the Federation of Gay Games said.
The event endorsed by Mayor Richard M. Daley is expected to generate more than $25 million in business in the city, according to the Convention and Tourism Bureau.
Opening ceremonies are scheduled July 15, 2006, at the renovated Soldier Field. Closing ceremonies will be July 22, 2006, at the Frank Gehry band shell in Millennium Park.
Other events at four sports villages include beach volleyball, indoor volleyball, rowing, sailing and a marathon along Chicago's lakefront.