It will be a colourful celebration: The Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 are the largest inclusive sporting event worldwide and will be the most comprehensive multi-sport event to be held in Germany since the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich.
Over 7,000 athletes with intellectual and multiple disabilities will compete across 26 sports. The competitions will be held at various locations throughout Berlin, just like the Special Olympics Festival that accompanies the Games offering a wide variety of inclusive cultural activities and events. From 17 to 25 June, over 300,000 visitors, around 16,000 volunteers, and numerous international delegations from all over the world will make Berlin the centre of inclusion.
As “Official Supporters,” Polytan and our sister company SYNLawn will champion these nine exhilarating days of sport. In addition, some of the competitions will be held on Polytan surfaces, including the athletics running disciplines at the Hanns Braun Stadium, which will be held on Rekortan M in Hertha blue. The futsal competition, meanwhile, will be played on LigaTurf Cross synthetic turf at the August Beer pitches. Various Polytan surfaces have been in use at the Berlin Hockey Stadium for many years and continue to impress with their outstanding quality.
“Sport is the platform for all people to come together. Our Polytan team in Berlin has had the privilege of renovating many sports facilities in recent years in preparation for this event, applying the latest technologies and sustainability concepts. We are looking forward to playing our part in making the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 a roaring success with our sports surfaces,” says Jan Lauterbach, Regional Manager of Polytan’s Berlin branch.
While providing the most suitable surfaces for the participating athletes is a key component of the Games, the aspirational element – i.e., promoting and actively living in an inclusive society through the unifying power of sport – is also crucial, according to Mathias Schmidt, Managing Director of Polytan GmbH. “We truly champion the notion that all people should have equal access to sport, education, culture and health care,” says Schmidt. “Sport is a very important aspect of this, but the Special Olympics World Games convey much more than that.”
Mark Solomeyer, Vice President of Special Olympics Germany, shares a similar sentiment: “Through the power of sport, we can demonstrate how valuable inclusion is for everyone, and how much fun and joy is possible in togetherness.”