World Winter Games: The closing ceremony will be a “home game” for Andreas Gabalier

The Special Olympics World Winter Games, the worldwide biggest sport and social event, are already casting their shadows before – far beyond the borders of Austria. Approximately 2,700 athletes from 107 nations, plus 1,100 coaches, 5,000 family members, more than 1,000 honored guests and 3,000 volunteers – they all will make Styria, or rather Graz, Schladming and Ramsau am DachsteinfromMarch14 to 25 the center of the sport universe! The World Winter Games are a big topic around the world, which is also illustrated by the fact that more than 300 media representatives from more than 40 countries have applied for accreditation and want to report on the Games for people with intellectual disabilities. ORF and ESPN will broadcast daily highlights of the various competitions and side events, numerous photographers and video reporters will send their emotional pictures from Styria all over the world, and social media channels will be very busy as well.

Also the fact that renowned artists will perform at the opening and closing ceremonies is proof that the Special Olympics World Winter Games are an event of world renown. As regards the opening ceremony in Schladming on March 18 (7 pm, Planai Stadium) we may disclose to date that the preparations are well under way and more information will be made available soon. Also, we may announce that the audience can already look forward to the appearances of the Vienna State Ballet, of the dace group Ich bin O.K. (I am OK) or of the opera and musical singer Anna Maria Kaufmann, who will sing the Anthem of Europe.

The closing ceremony in Graz on March 24 (7pm, Stadium ‘Liebenau’) will be a “home game” for the Austrian singer Andreas Gabalier, who will, for the first time, perform at “his” stadium to entertain the crowd. During the closing ceremony the Olympic flag will be handed over to the representatives of Abu Dhabi, the venue of the 2019 edition of the Special Olympics World Games. “There is no way around Andreas Gabalier, if you are planning a big closing ceremony in Graz. Therefore we are very pleased that Andreas has a big heart for Special Olympics and our athletes and thus agreed to perform on March 24“, explain the two CEOs of the World Winter Games 2017 Marc Angelini and Markus Pichler happily.


Tickets available as of February 6 through ‘Ö-Ticket’

The ticket sale for the opening ceremony in Schladming (March 18) and the closing ceremony in Graz (March 24) will start on Monday, February 6 at:!

You better be quick!” The tickets will probably sell out within a very short period of time. But do not worry: if you cannot get hold of tickets you can still attend the events “live” since ORF and ESPN will broadcast both ceremonies!


Please note: A valid ticket is necessary to attend the opening and closing ceremonies but no tickets are needed for the sport events of the Special Olympics World Winter Games! Access to all competitions in Graz, Schladming or Ramsau is FREE!

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