Gay Games delayed by one year due to Covid - RTHK
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Gay Games delayed by one year due to Covid

2021-09-15 HKT 13:00
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  • Organisers say delaying the Gay Games would give participants more time to prepare. Image courtesy of the Gay Games 11 Hong Kong 2022
    Organisers say delaying the Gay Games would give participants more time to prepare. Image courtesy of the Gay Games 11 Hong Kong 2022
The Gay Games, due to be held in Hong Kong in November 2022, have been postponed by a year.

In announcing the decision, organisers cited the Covid-19 pandemic and "uncertainty regarding the state of travel restrictions" in Hong Kong and internationally.

"Looking at the Covid situation not only in Hong Kong but also in Asia and the US, we really see that opening the event now would not be wise... because people are not prepared for it, people are not able to come here," said Dennis Philipse, the co-chair of the games.

He added that the Delta variant has created a lot of uncertainty, that people in some parts of the world haven't been able to get vaccinated.

Organisers said they want to make sure that the event is open to everybody.

They have previously said they're expecting 12,000 participants, 75,000 spectators and 3,000 volunteers from 100 countries to converge in Hong Kong for the games.

Philipse said that so far 1,500 people had pre-registered for the event when it opened in April, and that full registration – which costs more – was due to take place from mid-2021 to November.

But uncertainty over the pandemic and travel restrictions meant full registration hasn't started yet.

Philipse also told RTHK that comments by some lawmakers expressing reservations about the event was not a factor in the decision to delay the games, saying they had "the opposite effect" of generating more support from the public.

He also said the delay will allow participants who haven't been able to train over the past year and a half more time to prepare, and give organisers more time to plan the event and secure venues.