The Connecticut Masters' Games is a multi-sport festival of Olympic-style competition for Connecticut’s master amateur athletes. The Games are recognized by the National Senior Games Association and the United States Olympic Committee as the official Senior Games of Connecticut. The Connecticut Masters' Games is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, tax exempt corporation governed by a twenty-five member Board of Directors.
Our Mission Statement includes the following tenets...
- To promote better overall health and fitness among citizens.
- To recognize & reward Connecticut Senior residents / athletes who have chosen to participate in the Masters' Games, that reflect positively on them, their families and respective communities.
- To provide a unique forum which embodies the Olympic spirit of competition.
- To inspire the development of physical and competitive abilities of Connecticut athletes.
Anyone turning fifty years old in the 2023 calendar year will be eligible to compete in the Connecticut Masters' Games. * We introduced two NEW AGE CATEGORIES in previous years that we will offer once again in 2023; 30-39 and 40-49 in the following Sports: 3-on-3 Basketball, Archery, Badminton, Bowling, Golf, Pickleball, Racquetball, Shooting, Slow-Pitch Softball, Volleyball, Swimming, and Track & Field. The Connecticut Masters' Games are an open state and welcome all participants to come to Connecticut to compete.
The Connecticut Senior Olympics (now known as the Connecticut Masters' Games) began in 1979 when Phil Lubarsky, a retired physical education teacher, identified the need for physical activity among older people residing in the state. With just 167 participants, the first Olympiad was held October 14 and 21, 1979 in the City of Bridgeport.
For the next 17 years the games were hosted by the University of Bridgeport and were held in the greater Bridgeport area. Over the years, the games grew from a three day weekend in June to include a year round program; from 167 athletes to more than 850 Olympians.
In 1994, the Calendar House (Southington) members and Senior Olympians Lucie Ann Sweeney, Roy Rodrigues and George Varga voiced their concerns on the future of the Connecticut Senior Olympics. Due to the growth in the number of participants and events, various competitions events and activities were located in scattered sites throughout Connecticut. The Board of Directors of the Connecticut Senior Olympics would need to search for a new location.
At this opportune time, former local newspaper reporter, Florence Millette was covering a story on the “Games”. Sensing that this was a scoop in the making, Flo quickly interviewed the three calendar House members and contacted the Connecticut Senior Olympics Board of Directors to see what could be done to relocate the game to Southington. Within months, a steering committee was put together to research and develop the proper information and submit a proposal to the Senior Olympic Board. Through the combined efforts of Florence Millette and Barbara Coleman (CEO and President of the Southington Chamber of Commerce) and others, hard work and persistence achieved the desired results.
On June 6, 7, and 8 of 1997, the Town of Southington Hosted the 18th Annual Connecticut Senior Olympics- Summer Games. All events were held within a six mile radius of each other at Southington High School, Southington YMCA, Brunswick Super Bowl Lanes and Satellite center throughout the town. The "Games" remained in Southington through 2001 and continued to expand and offer various summer and winter events.
In 2000 and 2001 talks began with the Nutmeg State Games organization to take over the management of the Connecticut Senior Olympics. The CT Senior Olympics staff and board of directors was almost entirely volunteer and finding adequate funding to support the event had become problematic. In February of 2002, the Nutmeg State Games Board of Directors voted to make the CT Senior Olympics a division of the Nutmeg State Games. The Connecticut Senior Olympics were held in New London in 2002 and 2003 utilizing facilities at Connecticut College and the United States Coast Guard Academy.
In 2004, the Connecticut Senior Olympics changed its name to the Connecticut Senior Games and moved the event to Hartford and Trinity College. At that time the Board of Directors created the incorporation of the Connecticut Sports Management Group. Both the Connecticut Senior Games and the Nutmeg State Games became divisions under one corporate structure. The event reached an all time high in participation with 1,027 participants competing in 17 different sporting events. The Connecticut Senior Games remained in Hartford and Trinity College through 2009.
The "Games" moved to Manchester in 2010 and then to New Britain for 2011, 2012, and 2013. The 2013 "Games" reached a new high with over 1,200 participants taking part in 15 different sporting events on a non-qualifying year. In September of 2012, the board of directors voted to change its name from the Connecticut Senior Games to the Connecticut Masters' Games.
CONNECTICUT MASTERS' GAMES PREVIOUS HOST CITIES
- 1979 - 1996 - City of Bridgeport & the University of Bridgeport
- 1997 - 2001 - Town of Southington
- 2002 - 2003 - City of New London & Connecticut College
- 2004 - 2009 - City of Hartford & Trinity College
- 2010 - Town of Manchester
- 2011 - 2021 - City of New Britain & Central CT State University
- 2022 - Current - City of Middletown
The Connecticut Masters' Games Testimonials
Carolyn Vanacore, Professor Emerits - Southern CT State University, CSMG Board Member and CT Masters' Games Participant
"In 1987, a professional friend, Dr. Will Berger invited me to a meeting at the University of Bridgeport to provide input and support for a new venture, called Senior Games. I eagerly became part of the planning team, as well as an enthusiastic competitor. Many of us did not have the opportunity to compete as young women and this sounded great to us. In 1990, I competed in my first National Senior Games in Tennis at Syracuse University and have continued to compete since that time. In 2001, we entered our first women's 60+ Basketball Team from Connecticut and since those humble beginnings that number has tripled."
John Auer, President, Northeast Masters' Cycling Association
"2012 was our first year working with the Connecticut Masters' Games and we enjoyed the experience greatly. The event was safe, well organized and run with the precision of a fine Swiss watch. The Connecticut Masters' Games were included in our Championship Series and based on all of the positive feedback from our members, it is to be expected that it will be part of the Series for many years to come."
Mel Siebold, Swimming Coordinator
"I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Senior Games Administration and seeing the enjoyment the athletes experience. Not only the competition but the fellow ship that prevails during the day and after the competition."
Phil Rockwell, Tennis Participant and 2011 Connecticut Masters' Games Athlete of the Year
"Participating for the past 10 years in the Connecticut Masters Games has given me some of my most enjoyable tennis experiences. The events have been well organized, and the competition and camaraderie have been terrific, as have been the opportunities to play in the national events around the country."
Janice Pauly, Pickleball Coordinator and Participant
"Some of the words that have be used by our competitors to describe the Connecticut Masters Games Pickleball Tournament include fun, camaraderie, great exercise and competition and a super way to meet new friends. As the sport of pickleball grows, we hope to continue this tournament tradition that provides so many positive benefits for our masters players."
Margo Chase-Wells, Pickleball and Tennis Coordinator
"Although I have only competed in the CT Masters Games for 3 years I have been fortunate enough to compete in 3 sports (tennis, pickleball and table tennis). I also have the advantage of being able to compare it to others states' games, as I competed in the Nationals in Ohio as well as senior games in NH, MA, FL and ME.What puts CT at the top of the list is the commitment and passion of its coordinators. One of the qualities evident in all of them is their flexibility and creativity, and it's obvious that they truly want to get everyone involved regardless of the level.I noticed, too, that the participants are just so pleased to be competing at this age. They are truly a wonderful group of happy, fun-loving athletes and I continually look forward to my next interaction with them."...