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Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs

 

Join ‘Fans in the Stands’ to virtually cheer on Veteran athletes

May 6, 2021, 12:00:00 PM

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Join ‘Fans in the Stands’ to virtually cheer on Veteran athletes

VA invites public to support National Veterans Golden Age Games

WASHINGTON —  The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs invites everyone to support our 55 and older Veteran athletes as they compete during the National Veterans Golden Age Games at home, May 10-28 by cheering them on virtually.

Fans in the Stands allows anyone to register online and create video messages or cards in support of participating Veterans throughout the duration of the event.

“Providing a way for fans to re-create the energy and enthusiasm athletes experience in person is just one of the ways VA is continuing to use technology to enhance the Veteran experience,” said National Veterans Golden Age Games Director Carla Ruff. “‘Fans in the Stands’ gives volunteers, families, friends and other fans a way to participate and motivate our Veterans as they compete from home.”

The online sports competition coincides with Older Americans Month, promoting athletic spirit from home and includes air rifle, basketball free throw, blind disc golf, bowling, power walk, track and field and cycling.

Vietnam Veteran Lenny McNair from Baltimore, Maryland has participated in the games since 2014 and will compete in air-rifle and cycling for the at-home edition. The 73-year-old is an avid cyclist and says that cycling keeps him alive. “I think it was the best decision I’ve ever made,” McNair said. “The competition does something to the emotions. It’s a pick-me-up for anyone who does it.”

Nearly 500 Veterans from across the country are participating in their communities and at-home. That number has more than doubled from the 200 senior athletes who competed in 2020’s virtual event.

Registration for Veterans to participate in the competition is closed. Learn more about VA’s adaptive sports and special events.

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