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Veterans compete in the basketball event during the 34th NVWG. Photo Christopher DiVirgilio

National Veterans Wheelchair Games slated to draw historic number of athletes

The saying, “Everything is bigger in Texas,” may well ring true June 21-26, 2015, when the 35th Annual National Veterans Wheelchair Games (NVWG) come to Dallas, this time with the highest number of veteran participants in the history of the Games.

The size of this year’s Games – which are slated to draw more than 650 veteran athletes and more than 100 coaches – aligns with this year’s “big” theme – “Big City, Big Wheels, Big Hearts.”

“Big things happen in Dallas,” said Glendon Bentley, executive director of the Lone Star Chapter of Paralyzed Veterans of America. “If all of the veteran athletes who signed this year show up, this will be the largest National Veterans Wheelchair Games in the history of the Games.”

This year’s theme – which plays off of the city’s “Big Things Happen Here” campaign – was selected from submissions from Paralyzed Veterans of America members and Department of Veterans Affairs staff. Accompanying the “Big City, Big Wheels, Big Hearts” motto will be a western theme weaved into events throughout the week, Bentley said.

The Games kick off at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center on Sunday, June 21, with afternoon events featuring a variety of sports clinics for athletes to try power soccer, wheelchair basketball, quad rugby and table tennis. Evening opening ceremonies will feature the presentation of colors by the Lone Star Chapter’s wheelchair Honor Guard – the only wheelchair Honor Guard team in the United States – followed by an address by paralyzed Texas Governor Greg Abbott.

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