Sports Legends Yuna Kim, Michelle Kwan, Yao Ming; World Leaders including Nobel Peace Prize-winner Daw Aung San Suu Kyi,
H.E. Mrs. Joyce Banda, President, Republic of Malawi
, Others, Gather in Republic of Korea This Month For
2013 World Winter Games in PyeongChang
, Jan. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/
What will be the world's most inspiring sporting event of 2013, to be held in just two weeks?
2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games
, which kicks off on 29 January in PyeongChang in the Republic of Korea, will welcome an array of dignitaries, sports legends, celebrities and corporate leaders to witness the inspiring power of sports to unite people with and without intellectual disabilities.
Notable names from across the world that are scheduled to attend include sports legends
Bart Conner, Toby Dawson, Donna DeVarona,
Dan Jansen, Michelle Kwan, Yuna Kim, Yao Ming, Dikembe Mutombo, Apolo Ohno, Sam Perkins, Karl Schranz, Trixie Schuba, Hannah Teter, Michael Tritscher
Other dignitaries, celebrities and corporate leaders to attend include: H.E. Mrs.
, President, Republic of
, Asian University for Women, Chancellor; Nobel Peace Prize-winner
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi
, Member of Parliament,
, Chairman and CEO, the Coca-Cola Company;
, Chairperson, Sun Culture Foundation;
, Chairperson, Hensley & Co.; Mr.
Republic of Bulgaria
, Former President, the Center for Global Dialogue and Cooperation, President; Hon.
City of Los Angeles
, Mayor; Dr.
, President, Lions Clubs International;
, CEO and President, Catholic Relief Services and actress
Those will be just a few of the thousands of people who will come together as the Republic of Korea welcomes more than 2300 Special Olympics athletes from more than 110 nations - including countries such as
- to compete in seven Olympic-type winter sports as part of the Special Olympics World Winter Games in PyeongChang, the same site as the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Special Olympics World Winter Games celebrations officially kick-off later this week with the official torch lighting on
, which will travel to the Republic of Korea as part of the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics, leading up to the Games
Opening Ceremony on 29 January,
Global Development Summit on 30 January
addressing "Ending the Cycle of Poverty and Exclusion for People with Intellectual Disabilities", sports competitions on-going for the week of 30 January – 5 February, concluding with Closing Ceremony on
Every two years, thousands of Special Olympics athletes worldwide come together to showcase their athletic skills and celebrate the spirit of Special Olympics in alternating World Summer and World Winter Games. The first Special Olympics World Games took place in 1968 and since then have evolved into a world-class sporting event, attracting a wide range of sponsors, supporters and media. Special Olympics World Games bring public attention to the talents and capabilities of people with intellectual disabilities and are a capstone to more than 50,000 competitions that happen at all levels of Special Olympics each year.