World Games

Every two years, thousands of Special Olympics athletes worldwide come together to showcase their athletic skills and celebrate the spirit of Special Olympics in alternating World Summer and World Winter Games. The first Special Olympics World Games took place in 1968 and since then have evolved into a world-class sporting event similar in size and scope to the Olympic Games, attracting a wide range of sponsors, supporters and media. 

Following the Olympic ideals, Special Olympics World Games are abundant in tradition.  All World Games feature Opening and Closing Ceremonies, a Torch Run public awareness event prior to the Games, cultural activities, and world-class sports competition.


Special Olympics World Winter Games Kazan postponed to January 2023

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Special Olympics World Winter Games in Kazan, Russia, have been postponed to January 2023 due to the global pandemic and out of an abundance of caution for the health and safety of athletes, volunteers, staff, and fans.

Special Olympics and the Local Organizing Committee in Kazan explored many possible solutions and consulted extensively with local Special Olympics Programs, athlete leaders, members of the Board of Directors, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, and other subject matter experts to ensure the health and safety of everyone involved.

Due to the Delta variant of COVID-19 spreading across the globe, many Special Olympics delegations are hesitant or unable to travel internationally.

Postponing World Winter Games Kazan to 2023 helps ensure athletes will have the opportunity to participate, high quality competitions, and plenty of cultural activities and other immersive programming.

Waiting one year to hold the Games bolsters the goal of inspiring inclusion in Russia and around the world.

Special Olympics is committed to continue working with the established team to hold World Winter Games Kazan 2023.

For more information, visit

2023 World Games Selected Athletes:

Special Olympics Pennsylvania’s 2019 Winter Games and 2019 Indoor Winter Games served as the qualifying events for the 2023 World Winter Games.

Seven athletes were selected from Pennsylvania to participate in Special Olympics USA Team Trials for the opportunity to compete at the World Games during our 5th Annual Philadelphia Polar Plunge on December 6th.

  • Brooks Trimble, Lancaster County – Alpine Skiing (Novice)
  • Ricky Eutzy, Area M – Alpine Skiing (Advanced)
  • Lydia Wert, Beaver County – Alpine Skiing (Novice)
  • Robert “Bobby” Snively, Blair County – Speed Skating 2
  • Morae Ford, Erie – Cross Country Skiing 2
  • Justin Grimley, Chester County – Snowshoeing 3
  • Lisa Robinson, Chester County – Speed Skating 1

2023 World Games Selected Coaches & Staff:


  • Amanda Katelozus, Area M – Speed Skating Assistant Coach

  • Lester Loner, Lycoming – Snowshoe Assistant Coach

  • Kristie Reid, Allegheny – Alpine Assistant Coach


  • Lauren Saulter, UCS Manager – Assistant Sport Manager for Speed and Figure Skating

The 2019 World Games took place in Abu Dhabi from March 14-21, 2019.

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Click here to learn more.

PA World Games Athlete Medal Count

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Our athletes brought home some hardware after very successful competitions.  We couldn't be more proud of how they represented Pennsylvania as a part of Special Olympics USA!

Click here to view images of the Games! 

Check out a World Games Video Recap of our athletes via Facebook!



VOLLEYBALL TEAM: Clinton County Hawks







Chief David Mettin To Participate In Law Enforcement Torch Run Final Leg

Chief Mettin

Before the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 kicks off in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, an elite group of individuals will serve as the “Guardians of the Flame” and escort the Special Olympics Flame of Hope on a journey to heighten awareness and take the message of Special Olympics every corner of the United Arab Emirates. Chief David A. Mettin from the Slate Belt Regional Police Department is among those who will make up the prestigious “Final Leg” team for the Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) at the 2019 World Summer Games.

Mettin has been involved with the Torch Run for nine years. He has served as the Director for the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Pennsylvania, and now is the Assistant Director for the State.

He has been with the Slate Belt Regional Police Department for 4 years and served as the Chief of Police of the Pennridge Regional Police Department prior to joining his current force.

Mettin has 30 years of Law Enforcement experience, and lives in Bucks County, PA, with his wife Jenny and their three children.

World Games Athletes Honored by the Senate

House Recognition

Pennsylvania members of Special Olympics USA’s contingent for the 2019 Special Olympics World Games visited the State Capitol in Harrisburg on April 29th where they were honored on the Senate floor! The Senate payed tribute to our PA athletes for their achievements while competing in the World Games held in Abu Dhabi from March 14 - 21.