2019 Games Will Be in…Albuquerque!
Triumph over MS Highlights Personal Best Tennessee Presentation
2017 Venue Snapshot: Softball at Liberty Park
The Liberty Park Sports Complex will host softball competition for 2017 National Senior Games presented by Humana in Birmingham. Built in 1995, it is located just 25 minutes from downtown in scenic Vestavia Hills. With its convenient hub design and amenities, Liberty Park has become a popular softball tournament destination.
There are lighted fields, ample parking and spectator seating, paved sidewalks, covered dugouts, plus permanent concession facilities and bathrooms. Some fields have smaller outfields that will be used for older age divisions. In addition, there are two storm shelters that can hold 1,025 people.
Culture for Free
Perhaps the best free sightseer deal for athletes and visitors will be found at The Birmingham Museum of Art, which is in walking distance from the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Center,the hub of activity for The Games.
The Birmingham Museum of Art covers 3.9 acres in the heart of downtown’s cultural district. It is one of the finest regional museums in the United States, housing a diverse collection of more than 26,000 paintings, sculpture, prints, drawings, and decorative arts dating from ancient to modern times.
The collection presents a rich panorama of cultures, featuring the Museum’s extensive holdings of Asian, European, American, African, Pre-Columbian, and Native American art. While occasional special exhibits require purchasing a ticket, admission is free to the massive permanent collection.
Qualifying Games A-Plenty Coming Up
We always encourage you to qualify in your own state games, but many like to train in a competitive atmosphere of more games, or have a conflict with game dates near them. Good thing we have 52 choices during this 2016 qualifying year!
Games starting in August are Alaska, Delaware, Idaho, Louisiana, Michigan, Nebraska, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming. Other states with continuing events spread over multiple dates include Illinois, Maine, Maryland, New Hampshire and Vermont.
Check the specifics for the sport event(s) you are interested in by following the link below to find each state’s web and contact information.
HUMANA Heroes: Athlete of the Month
Many recall the epic battle of centenarians last summer at the 2015 National Senior Games presented by Humana. The matches between Fred Winter and John Zilverberg in men’s 100-104 discus, javelin and shot put were hotly contested and caught the attention of many media outlets, including Sports Illustrated and NBC’s TODAY Show. ESPN also selected a video clip as a Top Play of the Day. A commonly-heard phrase on the field that day was, “I want to be like them when I grow up.”
Who came out on top? “I got him, won all three,” said Fred Winter, who also earned gold in the 50 and 100 meter dashes. “I kinda feel sorry for him because he tried so hard. I suppose if he’s well, he’ll be back though.”
Fred has taken all the media attention and “attaboys” from athletes and others in stride. “Before I was 100, nobody noticed me,” he chuckled. “I’ve been to all National Senior Games but one, the first one in St. Louis. I got bronzes in the ’80s, silvers in the ’90s, and now golds after 2000. As I get older, I have less and less competition. I guess I outlasted some people.”
Recently, Fred earned an honor beyond anything he could have imagined. Chicago’s highly regarded Museum of Science and Industry has included his photo and an auditory message as part of an exhibit focusing on centenarians from across the United States. The exhibit is planned to remain on display for at least 7 years. He, his wife Darlene of 65 years and several family members have already made the trip from Michigan to see it. “Never expected that,” he said, “but I think it’s great.”
Fred hasn’t always been so athletic, and the turning point came when he was 70 and surveyed other men his age. “I wanted to see how I stacked up,” he told People Magazine. “And let’s just say, it wasn’t good.” That’s when he jumped into Senior Games, and he hasn’t looked back.
The elder athlete now follows a healthy diet, regular exercise and abstains from alcohol. Part of his regimen is to do 100 pushups daily. “I did 130 today,” he told us. “What’s the record for pushups for my age?”
Fred is grateful for his longevity and keeps his vision looking forward. “I survived the Battle of Okinawa and two typhoons,” the Navy veteran and former teacher mused. “I never thought then I’d make it to here. But I’m staying strong, and I’ll come to Birmingham for Nationals if the Lord permits me, and I don’t have a setback. I’ll see how I’m feeling then.”
Thanks Fred. You are a treasure to behold on the field…and now, in the museum.
We’re always looking for great athlete stories. Submit yours or nominate a fellow athlete who inspires you at our Athlete of the Month page at NSGA.com!
Good Luck in Rio!
Senior Health and Wellness
The Benefits of Exercise for Brain Health
Senior athletes know that participating in sports provides motivation to keep exercising. Now, research has confirmed that regular activity stimulates brain growth and, in many cases, help stave off or lessen degenerative mental disorders.
In a recent blog, Sushma Webber cites research that links exercise and brain health, stating several benefits that regular aerobic exercise provides at any age:
Webber offered a link to a nine-minute video produced by the Beckmann Institute of the University of Illinois that shares how recent research has confirmed the connection between fitness and brain health:
Help Us Celebrate Our 30th Anniversary!
NSGA wants to share your fondest memories and fitness “secrets.” Selected entries will be included on a 30th Anniversary web page and newsletter in 2017, plus in special displays and activities in Birmingham. Follow the links to convenient online forms below.
What’s Your Favorite Memory of The Games?
It can be any special moment from funny to inspirational. The easy to complete form offers several ideas for the type of brief messages we would love to share with others. You can even attach a photo to go with your story.
“30 Health and Fitness Secrets of Senior Athletes”
The top 30 athlete “secrets” will be shared with national media in 2017. Tell us yours! It can be an inspiration, a favorite or your own original expression, or advice you have gathered from others. It can be about exercise, nutrition, keeping mentally active, or staying motivated.
NSGA Online Merchandise Store
Beep Beep! Senior Athlete Coming Through!
There’s nothing better for a senior athlete than to have others see you working out and training and admiring your fitness level. Let them know about your goal for national competition in Birmingham next summer with gear featuring the 2017 National Senior Games logo!
Wearables with the 2017 logo and other motivational images are available on our online store. When you view the link below, simply click on either NSGA or 2017 images to see the various apparel types. Then click “Personalize” to position and add the artwork you want onto your selection. Get started today!
The Official NSGA Store at NSGA.com