2019 International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) Goalball and Judo Paralympic Qualifiers
Fort Wayne's largest international event has come to a close. June 28-July 10, nearly 600 athletes and delegates from 40 countries visited Fort Wayne for the 2019 International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) Goalball and Judo Paralympic Qualifiers—a chance for athletes to secure a spot at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics.
The games opened with a Welcome Ceremony at Parkview Field, followed by three days of Judo competition at the Grand Wayne Convention Center, and a week of Goalball competitions at Indiana Tech and Turnstone.
Throughout the competition, teams and organizers from IBSA and the United States Association of Blind Athletes (USABA) praised Fort Wayne for its Hoosier hospitality. Turnstone has already received international recognition for its commitment to adaptive sports, opening its Goalball Center for Excellence in 2015 and earning its designation as one of seven US Paralympic Training Sites in 2018. Hosting this event in Fort Wayne allowed our city to join the Olympic and Paralympic movement happening around the world, and puts us one step closer to becoming a capital for adaptive sports.
To make the events even sweeter, the US Women's Goalball Team—which trains at Turnstone and is housed on the campus—punched its ticket to Tokyo by advancing to the Gold Medal Game, cheered on by a packed crowd of USA fans.
Congratulations to our partners at Turnstone, the City of Fort Wayne, Grand Wayne Convention Center, Indiana Tech, Parkview Field, and our local hotel partners for going above and beyond the make this event a success. We are grateful to the hundreds of volunteers who stepped up to make the entire competition possible.
Thank you to our community for opening your arms to the world.