April 6, 2021 (Whitehorse, YT) – The Arctic Winter Games International Committee (AWGIC), announces January 29 to February 4, 2023, as the rescheduled dates for the Wood Buffalo Arctic Winter Games. In a planned and proactive response to the global COVID-19 pandemic and following a comprehensive risk analysis, the AWGIC postponed the Wood Buffalo Arctic Winter Games previously set to take place March 2022. Following the postponement announcement, the AWGIC worked in collaboration with the Wood Buffalo Arctic Winter Games Host Society and participating contingents to secure new dates for the host community.
The International Committee engaged in a collaborative process with stakeholders to ensure a rescheduled Games, set against full sport event calendars, active venues and busy teams, was achievable. We are extremely delighted to have rescheduled the Wood Buffalo Arctic Winter Games to a date that accommodates both the host community and Host Society as well as our valued Chefs de Mission from Participating Units. We truly miss our northern neighbours and look forward to seeing them again in 2023.
John Flynn, President, Arctic Winter Games International Committee
The Host Society is excited to welcome the Circumpolar North in 2023 as we continue to serve the community and share the spirit of the Games. We are confident in the planning that has taken place thus far and look forward to providing a safe world-class experience here in Wood Buffalo. We would like to recognize the continued commitment the Arctic Winter Games International Committee has displayed to our region. It will indeed be our time to shine with the support of our partners, volunteers and our community.
Melissa Blake, Co-Chair, Wood Buffalo Arctic Winter Games
Held every two-years, the Arctic Winter Games is the premier circumpolar sport and cultural event for youth hosting up to 2,000 participants and an equal number of volunteers.
As part of its ongoing commitment to the safety of participants, the AWGIC has also confirmed that it will increase the maximum number of coaching positions for the rescheduled Arctic Winter Games. These additional leadership positions will help enhance participant experience and protect athletes, coaches and cultural delegates from potentially vulnerable situations. A working group will be formed to develop an implementation plan for 2023 and future Safe Sport initiatives.
The rescheduled 2023 dates for the Arctic Winter Games in Wood Buffalo do not affect the current bid cycle for the Matanuska Susitna Borough, Alaska 2024 Arctic Winter Games Bid.
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About the Arctic Winter Games International Committee
The Arctic Winter Games International Committee is the rightsholder, and responsible for the long-term stewardship and management, of the Arctic Winter Games, a biennial premier circumpolar sport and cultural event for youth.
Moira Lassen, Operations Coordinator
About the Wood Buffalo Arctic Winter Games Host Society
The Arctic Winter Games is an international biennial celebration of circumpolar sports and culture taking place in the Wood Buffalo region. The Games will highlight the region and its culture through the spirit of sport to an international audience and visitors from around the world. The week-long event will see athletes from our own backyard along with international Circumpolar north regions during their time to shine.