Dates: July 13 - July 18, 2013
Host Medical Center: James A. Haley Veterans’ Hospital - Tampa, Florida
Host PVA Chapter: Florida Gulf Coast-www.floridagulfcoastpva.org
Get Ready to Seize the Day in Tampa Bay!
Greetings from Tampa Bay! It is our distinct honor to host the 33rd National Veterans Wheelchair Games. We are looking forward to sharing our piece of the Sunshine State with athletes, coaches, volunteers and staff.
The Tampa Bay Convention Center is a world-class 600,000 square foot event space located along the beautiful Riverwalk in the heart of Tampa and will serve as the main hub for Games activities.
Within close proximity, you’ll find the Channelside District that offers unparalleled dining, shopping, and an IMAX theater. Cultural activities include the Florida Aquarium, the SS American Victory , a World War II museum ship, and Ybor City, one of Tampa’s most famous historic neighborhoods known for enticing cuisine, shops, art galleries and museums.
Many of you will participate in a full week of exciting sporting events. We encourage you and your family to get out and explore the many Tampa Bay area attractions and activities – there’s something for everyone!
With an average of 361 days of sunshine each year, our area offers some of the most magnificent sunsets and nature settings in Florida. There are more than 200 beautiful parks and breathtaking beaches, sure to delight the whole family. Several ADA accessible state parks are nearby. Caladesi Island was voted the #1 Beach in America in 2008 by Dr. Beach, and offers 3 miles of unspoiled paradise…a magical place for swimming, picnics, snorkeling and fun! Hillsborough River State Park, one of Florida’s first state parks, offers an ADA-accessible swimming pool and fishing, canoeing and kayaking. Fort De Soto , named America’s Top Beach for 2009, offers nearly three miles of beautiful white sandy beach, a seven mile paved multipurpose trail, fishing piers, swim centers and a 2,200 foot barrier-free self-guided interpretive nature trail.
Adventure and excitement abound for all ages, with a number of attractions and theme parks, including Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, Adventure Island and Lowry Park Zoo. Just a short drive over the Courtney Campbell Causeway (Gulf to Bay Boulevard), you’ll find the Clearwater Marine Aquarium , home to “Winter”, the dolphin with a prosthetic tail that inspired the #1 box office hit Dolphin Tale and a local Veteran who realized that if this dolphin could get used to a prosthesis, so could he!
The Tampa Bay area offers art lovers and science enthusiasts several outstanding venues like the Tampa Museum of Art , located in downtown Tampa. Just over the Gandy Bridge in Downtown St. Petersburg, the Dali Museum is a one-of-a-kind wonder. The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) is one of the largest science centers in the southeast.
To all our friends, old and new: We wish you were here…and we can’t wait to see you in 2013!
If you are interested in learning more about the events that make up the National Veterans Wheelchair Games, these are the organizations that guide the competition and can provide the information to help prepare you to excel at the Games.