Birmingham Chosen to Host 2021 World Games
The International World Game Executive Committee announced Thursday morning that Birmingham, Alabama has been chosen as the host city for the 2021 World Games.
The committee chose between three finalists - Lima, Peru and Ufa, Russia were the others - after each made a bid to host the international event. Birmingham leaders are celebrating the economic impact it could have for the area.
"This is a historic opportunity for Birmingham," Mayor William Bell told AL.com. "This is just the beginning, and I'm so thankful to the entire team and everyone who supported the team."
The World Games started in 1981 to provide a competition for sports that aren't contested in the Olympic Games. The first event was held in Santa Clara, California and has not returned to the United States since that time. Birmingham will change that.
In 2013, the World Games were held in Columbia with athletes from more than 100 countries competing in the event. Organizers said that more than half-a-million spectators attended those games, which means the state of Alabama could see a similar impact on tourism.
Watch the winning announcement, which took place in Switzerland.