Game On – Pride Games underway this week

Pride Games, the UK’s longest running LGBT sports festival gets underway this week in Manchester. The event, which has taken place every year since it was launched in 2005, brings together some key players from Manchester’s LGBT sports’ scene. The week-long festival kicks off with a series of evening events, including a 5km run and community relay race, an evening of mountain biking tuition, and a Trans Men’s Basketball taster, amongst other sessions.
 
Lou Englefield from Pride Sports, the organisation, coordinating the festival, says:
“Its great to see some new events in the programme, like the Trans Men’s Basketball Taster, as well as some activity in which established clubs such as Northern Jump volleyball club & Northern Aces Tennis club welcome beginners & people returning to sport.  Of course we’re also delighted to be welcoming hundreds of LGBT sports people to Manchester for our Tournament weekend on 8 & 9 June”
 
The Tournament Weekend will see international badminton and squash tournaments welcome participants from the UK and Europe. Whilst other competitive events include women’s basketball and football, an American tennis tournament, a track & field meet, and a swimming gala. This finale to the games makes use of some of Manchester’s top sporting venues, such as the National Squash Centre and the athletics stadium at SportCity.
 
Pride Games remains one of the few LGBT sports events in the world to host a Youth Games, delivered by partner organisation LGBT Youth North West, who this year are delighted to welcome Claire Harvey, Team GB Sitting Volleyball Captain to the event. Claire will be leading a sitting volleyball taster session for young people.
“Role models in sport are so important for LGBT young people. Many of the young people we work with have experienced school sport as exclusive at best and, at worst,  as a focus for homophobic and transphobic bullying. In supporting the Youth Games, Claire is showing our participants that LGBT people have a place in sport from grass roots to the highest level”
Sally Carr, organiser of the Youth Games explains.
 
The following clubs from Manchester’s LGBT community are delivering events – Northern Aces Tennis, Open Athletics, Northern Rebound Squash Club, Northern Jump Volleyball Club, Slam Dunkin’ Divas Basketball Club, GHAP Badminton and Northern Wave Swimming Club.
 
Pride Games is sponsored by Manchester City Council, NASUWT (the teachers’ union) and LGBT sports development & equality organisation Pride Sports
 
Details & Booking for all events: http://www.pridesports.org.uk/pride-games-2013/