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Manitoba 55+ Games hosting three days of shuffleboard, Scrabble and more

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From pickleball to bridge, the Wheat City is set to play host to the Manitoba 55+ Games.

The 41st annual event holds its opening ceremonies in Brandon on Tuesday, kicking off three days of competition, social activity and entertainment.

“There’s lots of buzz around town about it, so it’s great to see the participation,” said Active Aging in Manitoba executive director Linda Brown.

There are over 1,000 entries and over 200 volunteers making this year’s competition possible.

While there are events like tennis and track, the games are not just about sport. There are also competitions for Scrabble, whist, and arts and crafts.

The games are also about connection, Brown says.

“A lot of people have come for a number of years, and they meet their old friends every year at the games, but we know just participating in activity is so important physically, but also mentally to keep up those social connections.”

Just like the Olympics, cities, towns and municipalities must bid on the event and be chosen to host.

This is the second year Brandon has hosted the games. The first was in 2016.

The competition can have a big economic impact, Brown says.

“When you think about the hotels that people stay in, usually there’s family or friends that come with them, the restaurants benefit so yes, it is a great economic impact for any community that wishes to take on the games.”

The games are also free to watch for spectators.

Details can be found on Active Aging in Manitoba’s website.

- With files from CTV’s Rachel Lagacé

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