On March 1932, Meir Dizengoff, the mayor of Tel-Aviv, on his white horse, led the parade of Athletes who participated in the first Maccabiah. For 5 days the 390 athletes from 18 countries competed in various sports. Eighty one years later, in the 19th Maccabiah, the first one held in Jerusalem- there were delegations from 78 countries, 9,000 athletes competing in 42 different sports!
The Maccabiah unites Jewish athletes, and provides them with opportunities to explore Israel.
If you made it this far, I have a confession to make: I actually was in the opening ceremony of the 14th Maccabiah, one of the kids performing in the opening show just before the athletes walk around the stadium. It was really special meeting them and talking to those athletes from around the world- sharing their excitement, of being in Israel, competing and meeting Jewish people from other places, some of them for the first time in their lives.
We are proud of Jewish athletes who make it to the top of their sports, The Maccabiah is an opportunity for them to feel connected and be part of something bigger and better.
View U.S Medals at the 2013 Maccabiah Games
Read what the Washington Post wrote about the Maccabiah Games