2016 Invictus Games opening ceremony set for May 8 at ESPN Wide World of Sports

2016 Invictus Games
The 2016 Invictus Games will hold their opening ceremony on May 8 at ESPN Wide World of Sports.
Wounded warriors from around the world will gather at Walt Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports to compete in the 2016 Invictus Games Orlando, whose opening ceremony is set for May 8.

The 2016 Invictus Games announced its two newest celebrity ambassadors – Shawn Johnson and Derek Hough of Dancing with the Stars fame. Both are expected to attend the Games. The Opening Ceremony is partly being produced by the same company that did the opening ceremonies for the 2014 Invictus Games and 2012 London Olympics and will feature musical performances by James Blunt and Laura Wright, in addition to appearances from Prince Harry and First Lady Michelle Obama, with more names still to be announced.

The Ceremony features an unprecedented number of military performances, including the U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, U.S. Army Band, U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps and the U.S. Marine Corps Silent Dill Team. In addition, the audience will hear emotional first-person narratives from injured servicemen MSgt Israel Del Toro Jr., LCpl John-James Chalmers and Louis Nethercott.

“The pageantry of the opening ceremony will begin a week that will give us all the opportunity to pay tribute to service and honor the sacrifice of our injured servicemen and women and their families,” said Ken Fisher, Chairman of the Organizing Committee, Invictus Games Orlando 2016. “I hope that every American can join us for the Invictus Games, cheer on these amazing competitors, and show those just starting out on the road to recovery what is possible, despite their injury or illness.”

The Invictus Games Orlando 2016 takes place May 8-12 and will feature more than 500 injured military veterans and active duty personnel from 14 countries competing in 10 events. The brainchild of Prince Harry, Invictus is the only international adaptive sporting event for wounded, ill and injured active duty and veteran service members. The first Invictus Games took place in London in 2014. Prince Harry is expected to attend this year’s event at Walt Disney World Resort along with a host of celebrities and dignitaries such as First Lady Michelle Obama. The 2016 Games, the first to be held in the United States, will be televised on the ESPN family of networks and will feature nations competing in archery, cycling, indoor rowing, powerlifting, sitting volleyball, swimming, track and field, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair tennis.

The opening event on May 8 inside Champion Stadium will be televised live on ESPN2. This concept rendering shows what the opening ceremony event stage will look like:

Much like the traditional relay of the Olympic torch to the competition site, the official Invictus Games Flag has begun its ceremonial tour which started at London’s Buckingham Palace and made its first U.S. stop on Tuesday in New York City. The flag is scheduled to arrive at Walt Disney World Resort just before the Games begin.

Tickets are on sale now, starting at $18 for adults and $13 for children (ages 3-9), seniors (60-over) and military personnel. Children under 3 are free. Opening Ceremony tickets are $65 for adults and $45 for children, seniors and military personnel Closing Ceremony tickets are $45. Tickets are available at all Ticketmaster outlets and at www.invictusgames2016.org/tickets.

Here’s our interview with Invictus Games Chairman Ken Fisher:

Attractions - The Show - Zombie Outbreak; Invictus Games interview; latest news - May 5, 2016

Some athletes from the Invictus Games can also be seen at Magic Kingdom:

Friday, May 6: Grand Marshal pre-parade
Prior to the 3 p.m. Festival of Fantasy Parade

Friday, May 6: Flag Retreat ceremony
5 p.m. in Town Square

Monday, May 9: U.S. Army Old Guard Fife & Drum Corps performance
Prior to the 3 p.m. Festival of Fantasy Parade

May 9-11: U.S. Army Herald Trumpets performance
Train station at 3:50 p.m.

Opening Ceremony Photo Gallery:
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