IGBO, an international gay bowling organization with over 8000 members worldwide, continues to grow as the number one and official bowling organization for the LGBT community on the planet. We have members currently in Australia, Canada, Germany, New Zealand and United States of America. Currently we are reaching out to several European countries to expand our presence and bring together the global community to the sport of bowling in its various forms.
IGBO is rich and diverse, reflecting the organizations ideals of Unity, Fellowship and Communication. From it’s original six member cities in 1980, to over 250 member leagues and tournaments worldwide, IGBO has grown into the largest International Gay and Lesbian sports organization in existence today. The amazing growth of Gay bowling is not surprising, as it is one sport that truly does not discriminate among its participants. Whether young or old, male or female, wheelchair bound or deaf, strong or weak, tall or short, bowling is a sport that virtually any living person can enjoy whether recreationally or as a member of a league. Gay and Lesbian leagues began emerging in the United States in the ’70’s, primarily as a social outlet for men and women who wished to fraternize with their “family” members in a non-bar atmosphere. IGBO was created out of a desire to unify all of the gay leagues, and open lines of communications between them, as well as promote the sport through league and tournament participation. Over the past 30 years, the organization has dealt with topical issues such as increasing participation by women, memorializing members who have succumbed to AIDS, raising funds for charitable organizations and the ongoing pursuit of increasing membership worldwide.
International Gay Bowling Organization - Statements
We, the International Gay Bowling Organization (IGBO), aim to foster a safe and inclusive environment for the entire LGBTQ+ community (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and their allies) as the bowling organization of choice for the international community.
IGBO seeks to promote the sport of bowling and enrich the lives of individuals through league building and tournaments around the world. IGBO is guided by the principles of community, inclusion, and solidarity as we:
- provide educational opportunities to local communities about bowling, LGBTQ+ history, and other topics of importance;
- build communication avenues between member leagues, joining LGBTQ+ communities together in solidarity;
- and plan social opportunities to promote the sport of bowling and to enrich the lives of individual athletes through leagues and tournaments.
Non-Discrimination & Participation Statement
IGBO recognizes access to sport as a human right. Community is a primary pillar of IGBO and cannot be fulfilled if any member of our community is intentionally or unintentionally excluded. We strive to continually listen, learn, and adapt to ensure every member of IGBO has a sense of belonging in our community. IGBO promotes gender inclusion by recognizing an individual player’s self-identified gender; and avoiding gender-based distinctions or divisions in sporting activities, while considering member countries’ cultures. IGBO is committed to celebrating each athlete’s accomplishments and skill, regardless of gender identity.