The Special Olympics were founded in 1968 by Eunice Kennedy-Shriver, the sister of US President John F. Kennedy. It is the world's largest sports movement for people with intellectual and multiple disabilities. This year they will be held in Germany, in Berlin, for the first time.
Thousands of athletes will compete with each other in 26 sports at the Special Olympics Games Berlin. The capital is looking forward to a colourful international festival of sport - for more recognition and social participation of people with intellectual disabilities. The accompanying cultural programme is just as diverse. We have picked out 11 tips for you.
A tip for your summer in Berlin in advance
Summer is here, so it’s the perfect time to experience Berlin again! Here are our best offers for everyone who already has a public transport ticket. Have some unforgettable experiences with the Berlin WelcomeCard - Summer Edition – your perfect companion in Berlin. For just 9 euros, the Summer Edition of the Berlin WelcomeCard gives you from 25% to 50% off on tickets and attractions at over 180 partners throughout Berlin and Potsdam for 72 hours. If you want a little more culture, you can get the Discount Card including Museum Island.
Tip1: Special Olympics Festival
The Special Olympics Festival offers a unique and inclusive stage programme as well as hands-on activities, workshops, sports activities and much more. From Saturday to the following Friday, there will be daily encounters and a full programme from 12 noon.
Where: Neptune Fountain, Mitte
When: 18 to 24 June, from 12 noon each day
Tip 2: Berlin Brass Festival
A rousing open-air event awaits you at the Berlin Brass Festival. From jazz to Balkan, ska and soul or traditional music, you will be able to experience the different styles and genres of brass music over six days. Brass artists will perform at many locations in Berlin, in parks and on Berlin's streets. You can find the venues on the website.
Where: at various locations
When: 16 to 21 June
Tip 3: Webtalk: Women with disabilities
This talk gives you an insight into a sports world with daily challenges. What does everyday sports life look like for people with disabilities? What are the differences between competitive and amateur sport? And what role does so-called "multiple discrimination" play as a woman and with a disability? How can inclusive sport actually be implemented in practice and are women in disabled sport more equal than elsewhere?
When: 23 June; 6.30 pm to 8 pm
Tip 4: Guided tours of Charlottenburg Palace
Charlottenburg Palace, once built as a summer palace, is now the largest and also the most magnificent palace in Berlin. The history of the palace has always fascinated and on the guided tours through the living quarters, the Golden Gallery and the Porcelain Cabinet you will be immersed in the world of Queen Sophie Charlotte, the first Queen of Prussia. Guided tours in easy-to-understand language will also be offered on 20 June.
Where: Charlottenburg Palace, Spandauer Damm 10-22, Charlottenburg
When: Tuesday to Sunday: 10 am to 5.30 pm
More Information about Charlottenburg Castle
Tip 5: #BerlinBerlin – Theater Strahl
The story of the Berlin Wall has been told many times before, but as always, Theater Strahl makes something special out of it. Four playwrights from East and West, born before and after the Wall was built, have taken up the theme together and developed a special play about life in the divided city: It is about a young man born in the year the Wall was built and his father, who has started a new family in the West. The young man only meets him in 1989 and grows up with a mother who remains silent and represses all these years.
The family story, which was awarded the Friedrich-Luft-Preis for the best Berlin and Potsdam performance of 2018, deals with the question of the meaning of walls that separate us and yet are erected again and again.
Where: Nordpromenade 5, Biesdorfer Parkbühne, Marzahn-Hellersdorf
When: 20 and 21. June
Tip 6: No Planet B – the children's court on climate change
It has long been known that the world has no plan B, but it must finally be understood. This topic cannot be taken up often enough and so, of course, the children's and youth theatre Atze is not dealing with it for the first time. In this play, three young people introduce themselves. The climate catastrophe has occurred and they sit in the dock at the International Children's Court, together with their neighbour. In the end, the audience decides whether the neighbour is guilty or not.
Where: ATZE Music Theatre, Luxemburgerstraße 20, Wedding
When: up to 23 June
Tip 7: ICONS – A photo exhibition about the right to be
This exhibition shows portraits of famous icons and archetypes as we know them. It shows images of universal dreams and desires to be a part of pop culture, art or society. The icons in this exhibition are portrayed by people who have rarely been allowed to appear. On display are 21 models from Sweden who have many things in common: Dreams, feelings and Down syndrome. Learn more about the right to be and be seen, no matter who you are.
Where: Swedish Embassy Felleshus, Rauchstraße 1, Mitte
When: 18 to 26 June, Mon to Fri 11 am to 7 pm, Sat and Sun 11 am to 4 pm
Tip 8: Guided Tour: Bernauer Straße
The history of Bernauer Strasse and the former border strip is presented in all its breadth in the guided tours of the Berlin Wall Memorial. The destruction of urban space and lifeways, the separation of family members and friends, and the numerous attempts to overcome the Wall.
The tours are offered in different variations, also in easy-to-understand language, in German sign language and as a tactile tour for blind and visually impaired people.
Where: Berlin Wall Memorial, Bernauer Strasse 119, Mitte
Tipp 9: Cold Case Antique
Inspector Hans-Herakles investigates Zeus and his crimes. A tragicomic true-crime evening awaits you as the ensemble gets to the bottom of the question of why the powerful go unchallenged for so long, whether it's worth standing up when you feel injustice, and whether gods aren't only human.
Where: RambaZamba Theatre, Schönhauser Allee 36-39, Prenzlauer Berg
When: 16 to 19 June
More Information about the Theater RambaZamba
Tip 10: Champions Slam Open Air
Poetry slams are literary competitions in which self-written texts are performed. They are the perfect way for artists to try themselves out on stage and to develop themselves further. Many famous comedians and cabaret artists come from the poetry scene, such as Marc-Uwe Kling, Felix Lobrecht, Hazzle Brugger or Sophie Passman.
This year, the best poets currently available will perform on the Friedrichshain open-air stage. A must for all poetry slam fans and a great start for all those who want to become one.
Where: Freiluftkino Friedrichshain, Landberger Allee 15, Friedrichshain
When: 25 June
Tip 11: Late Art Afterwork
Once a month you can take an evening stroll along the East Side Gallery to discover selected works of art and experience this unique place in the interplay of daytime and evening moods. On an entertaining and informative guided tour, you will learn how the area and the artworks change after dark, what the border looked like here before 1989 and what art and politics have in common.
Where: Berlin Wall Foundation's Info-Mobile on the Spree side of the East Side Gallery, diagonally opposite Tamara-Danz-Strasse, Mühlenstraße 73, Mitte
When: 23 June