Special Olympics World Games, WWE announce partnership

This summer, about 7,000 athletes from 177 countries will converge on Los Angeles to take part in the Special Olympics World Games. The 2015 World Games will be the largest event hosted by Los Angeles since the1984 Olympic Games.

On Monday in Los Angeles, the Special Olympics and WWE announced a partnership during their live “Monday Night Raw” television show. Patrick McClenahan, the president and CEO of the 2015 Special Olympics World Games, was joined by Special Olympics global messengers and athletes from the U.S. live on stage during the show.

“WWE has always been a supporter of the Special Olympics, in fact there were one of the founding partners of the U.S. games in 2014,” McClenahan told HS Insider. “I think WWE touches more people around the world than almost any other company. Our athletes absolutely love the Superstars and Divas. At the Games in 2014, during the opening ceremony, there would be videos on the jumbotron with actors and famous athletes wishing the Special Olympians well. And the Special Olympians would applaud. And then a WWE Superstar would come on the screen, and the place would just erupt. The Superstars and Divas love our athletes, so they are going to throw all their marketing power behind our World Games.”

The World Games events will take place in some of the same venues that the 1984 Olympics were held, with events being held across the Southland.  There will be Athlete Village at USC and UCLA, and the opening ceremony will take place on July 25 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, site of the 1932 and 1984 Olympic Games. 

The 25 events taking place during the World Games: Aquatics, Athletics, Badminton, Basketball, Beach Volleyball, Bocce, Bowling, Cycling, Equestrian, Football (Soccer), Golf, Gymnastics, Half Marathon, Handball, Judo, Kayaking, Open Water Swimming, Powerlifting, Roller Skating, Sailing, Softball, Table Tennis, Tennis, Triathlon and Volleyball. 

“WWE is proud to continue our support of Special Olympics through this new partnership with the 2015 Special Olympics World Games, and use the
power of our global brand to shine a light on these inspirational
athletes, as well as the message of acceptance and inclusion,” WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie
McMahon said. “The passion and dedication of each athlete motivates WWE
Superstars and Divas, and people all around the world.  We look forward
to cheering them on in Los Angeles this summer.”

HS Insider will also be giving full coverage to the World Games this summer, with specially selected high school students working for The Times to provide coverage of the events before, during and after the World Games.

For more information on the World Games, go to la2015.org.

—Houston Mitchell. Photo: Special Olympians take the stage during “Monday Night Raw.” Credit: WWE.