Big Sky State Games returns to Billings - KULR8.com | Montana's News Leader | Billings, MT

Big Sky State Games returns to Billings

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BILLINGS, Mont. -

Each year, thousands of fans and athletes make their way to Billings from across the state to compete in the annual Big Sky State Games.

This is the 32nd year the games have come to Billings, bringing together thousands of athletes from all over the state.

This Olympic-style sports festival has something for everyone, with 36 sports categories.

The events range from traditional Olympic sports, to things like billiards.

"So we have a real variety," Big Sky Games Executive Director Karen Sanford Gall said. "Traditional sports like track and field of course, swimming, basketball. Basketballs our largest sport. So pretty much something for everyone. We have about 10,000 athletes each year so we're the largest state games in the country per capita."

Alex Tyson, Visit Billings' Executive Director, said an estimated $5 million should be pumped into the Billings economy over the weekend.

She said even if you aren't a sports fan or don't plan to attend the games, it's a time of year we shouldn't take for granted.

"If you were to take all of that away, and then it's just a normal summer weekend that's a huge hit on the economy," Tyson said. "And so it's really important for us, even if you're not an athlete or a fan of an athlete, to be gracious for events like this."

Opening ceremonies start Friday night at 5:30 with the torch lighting ceremony right here at Daylis stadium. 

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