Dave Killian, Officer of Site Selection says, "The Site Selection process to host the Gay Games is a long and difficult one. The FGG is thrilled that Valencia has been selected as the presumptive host of Gay Games XII in 2026 and look forward to working with them to produce an amazing event. The Gay Games will be held for the first time in Spain, which highlights the growing global footprint of our event."
Co-President, Sean Fitzgerald states, “All finalist bid cities did an amazing job in delivering their final presentations but at the end of the day there can only be one host city. We are delighted it is Valencia and we are confident that the team will do an incredible job of bringing the Gay Games principles to their city." Co-President, Joanie Evans adds, “Congratulations Valencia! We are so excited to be heading there in 2026. As someone who has been on a bid team (London 2018), I know the heartache of not winning and I want to recognize our two other finalists, Guadalajara and Munich. That said, we feel that Valencia will bring a rich dimension to the Games and, this being the first time a Games will be held in Spain, it will have a positive impact on the city."
A record number of 20 cities from 6 continents expressed interest in bidding to host 2026 Gay Games XII.
The bid cities were: Brisbane, Australia; São Paulo, Brazil; Toronto, Canada; Munich, Germany; Dublin, Ireland Guadalajara, Mexico; Amsterdam, Netherlands; Auckland, New Zealand; Lisbon, Portugal; Cape Town, South Africa; Durban, South Africa; Valencia, Spain; Taipei, Taiwan; Liverpool, UK; Austin, USA; Fort; Lauderdale, USA; Minneapolis, USA; New Orleans, USA; San Diego, USA; Seattle, USA The eight cities that made it to the semi-final round were Auckland, Brisbane, Guadalajara, Munich, San Diego, Taipei, Toronto and Valencia.
A core principle of the Federation of Gay Games is “Participation, Inclusion and Personal Best™”. These principles will be represented next at Gay Games 11 in Hong Kong in November 2023. There will be 36 sports and numerous Arts and Culture events over 9 days. It has never been more important to stand up for the rights of the LGBTQ+ communities around the world. About the Federation of Gay Games The Gay Games was conceived by Dr. Tom Waddell, an Olympic decathlete, as a way to empower thousands of LGBTQ+ athletes and artists through sport, culture, and fellowship. It was first held in San Francisco in 1982. Subsequent Gay Games were held in San Francisco (1986), Vancouver (1990), New York (1994), Amsterdam (1998), Sydney (2002), Chicago (2006), Cologne (2010), Cleveland+Akron (2014), and Paris (2018). Gay Games 11 will be held in Hong Kong in 2022. Visit www.gaygameshk2022.com for more information.