Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center - Houston, Texas

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More than 600 Veterans Expected to Register for 21st National Veterans Golden Age Games in Houston

January 25, 2007

Local sponsorship of the Games is being accepted from area businesses and professional groups.  Also, more than 1,000 volunteers are needed to assist with a full range of exciting activities taking place during the Games.

HOUSTON - Registration has begun for the 21st National Veterans Golden Age Games (NVGAG), taking place August 27-31, 2007 in Houston. More than 600 veterans are expected to participate in this year’s Games, making it the nation’s largest senior sporting event for veterans.

The Games are an outgrowth of VA’s historic involvement in geriatric programs. Many of the events began as recreational activities at VA hospitals and nursing home care units across the country. In 1985, the first National Veterans Golden Age Games took place in Albany, Georgia with 115 competitors.

The NVGAG brings together veterans age 55 and older who receive health care at VA medical facilities to compete in events such as swimming, bicycling, golf, shot put, discus, 10-meter air rifle, table tennis, dominoes, shuffleboard, horseshoes, nine-ball, bowling, checkers, and croquet.  Veterans compete in seven categories based on age.  Veterans who use wheelchairs or are visually impaired are also eligible to compete in separate divisions.

Competitors from across the United States will begin arriving on August 26 and the staff of the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center (MEDVAMC) is planning a week full of Houston tourism, entertainment, and recreation to fill any “down-time” competitors may have. The site for the majority of the sporting events, plus the opening and closing ceremonies, is the George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston. All veterans who are registered for health care at a VA Medical Center are eligible to compete. 

The National Veterans Golden Age Games are co-sponsored by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the Veterans Canteen Service, and Help Hospitalized Veterans. Local sponsorship of the Games is being accepted from area businesses and professional groups. Also, more than 1,000 volunteers are needed to assist with a full range of exciting activities taking place during the Games. 

If you are interested in sponsorship, contact Mike Mitchell at (713) 794-8779. If you would like to register to compete, contact one of the MEDVAMC Team Coaches, Jemarques Handy at (713) 791-1414, ext. 3537; Stacey Spicer at (713) 791-1414, ext. 5431; or Dennis Jones at (713) 791-1414, ext. 5524. To volunteer, call MEDVAMC Voluntary Services at (713) 794-7135. Visit the 2007 NVGAG Web site at http://www1.va.gov/vetevent/gag/2007/.

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