ST. GEORGE (ABC4 Utah) – Thousands of top athletes are in southern Utah Wednesday, and not one of them is under the age of 50.
It’s the 30th anniversary of this event that brings in 11,000 athletes from all over the world.
Carl Assenmacher, 70, came from Munich, Germany to St. George to compete in table tennis.
“I’ve been in the single final, the mixed final, and the double final,” said Assenmacher.
“Carl has been in the finals for several years,” said Henry Blankenship, Co-Director of the Table Tennis competition.
The Huntsman World Senior Games is in its 31st year, Carl has been coming for 14 of those years and every state and numerous countries are represented.
“It’s an interesting tournament here, very nice people, a lot of matches, and sometimes I win,” said Assenmacher.
“This is problem solving 9 feet away, 70 miles an hour. This is the best sport in the world to ward off Alzheimer’s. It’ active. you get exercise, your mind is active,” said Blankenship about table tennis.
But it’s not just table tennis.
“We offer 30 different sports at the games, and we have everything from Archery to Volley Ball, cowboy action shooting, pickle ball, softball, track and field, you name it, we pretty much got it,” said Kyle Case, Huntsman World Senior Games CEO.
Case said the economic impact from the games is tremendous.
“We estimate that $16.7 million, new dollars, flow into the economy, from the Huntsman Senior Games over the next two weeks. They come and they stay in our hotels, they eat in our restaurants, and they leave their dollars behind here,” said Case.
The games go until October 21.