Birmingham set to host 2025 World Police and Fire Games
Birmingham has been selected to host the 2025 World Police and Fire Games.
The biennial event will bring over 10,000 athletes representing law enforcement, firefighters and other agencies and is one of the largest multinational sporting events in the world.
“This is a great day for Birmingham,” Council President William Parker said. “Obviously we could all use some good news and hope for the future right now. This gives us something to work towards over the next five years. With the World Games coming here in 2022, these two events are helping to put Birmingham on the map as a sports tourism destination.”
There will be over 70 countries represented and teams will compete in sporting events ranging from baseball to karate to decathlons. This will be the ninth time the games have been held in the United States since their inception in 1985 when they were held in San Diego.
In January, the Birmingham City Council unanimously approved a resolution of intent to provide funding of up to $500,000 a year for four years beginning in 2022 to help secure the games.
Dave Miklos, a member of the World Police and Fire Games board of directors, said Birmingham is well positioned to host the games and looks forward to them coming to the Magic City.
“It’s a beautiful city and the venues here are awesome,” Miklos said. “I think the athletes from around the world are going to enjoy coming here.”
Last year, the Birmingham City Council sent a delegation to Chengdu China for the closing ceremonies of the games that were held there. Councilor John Hilliard, chair of the Economic Development Committee, was part of that group and believes Birmingham will benefit greatly from the games.
“When we arrived in Chengdu, I was blown away by what we saw,” Hilliard recalled. “There were people from all over the world, and you could just feel the energy surrounding all the events. Estimates say that these games will have an economic impact of upwards of $75 million here. This could not come at a better time and I am so proud to have been a part of the effort to bring these games to the Magic City.”
Councilor Hunter Williams, who chairs the Public Safety Committee, believes this is a great opportunity to honor first responders from around the world. “Right now, these men and women working in law enforcement and rescue services are on the frontlines of a worldwide health crisis,” Williams said. “By having the opportunity to host them in 2025 for this amazing event, Birmingham will be able to express the gratitude on behalf of the entire world for the bravery and service our first responders are exhibiting during these difficult times. Better days are ahead and we can’t wait to host these games.”