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Goodwill Games

Last modified: 2004-04-24 by
Keywords: goodwill games | games | united states of america | soviet union | ussr | usa |
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History of the Goodwill Games

The Goodwill Games were founded by Robert Edward "Ted" Turner in 1985. The year before he was watching the 1984 Summer Olympics (which the Soviet bloc boycotted) on TV and called his assistant, Robert Wussler, into his office. He said "We need to do something about this - This is wrong." He wanted to televise the Frendship '84 Games on his TBS "Superstation". The Soviets had organized these games as an alternative to the Olympics. But, the TBS board said no. So, instead, Turner began discussing the possibilty of TBS staging an Olympic-style competition in Moscow with the Soviets. In 1985 an agreement was reached: The inaugural Goodwill Games would take place in Moscow in 1986, with the games alternating every four years between the Soviet Union and the United States. Subsquent games were held in Seattle (1990) and St. Petersburg (1994).

Ted Turner sold his company, Turner Broadcasting, (including Goodwill Games, Inc.) to TimeWarner (later AOL/TimeWarner) in 1998. TimeWarner continued the games with New York City hosting in 1998, but drastically downsized them. They staged a Winter Goodwill Games in Lake Placid in 2000, and the 5th Goodwill Games in Brisbane, Australia in 2001, but the games were never the same under TimeWarner's ownership. TimeWarner pulled the plug on the games after Brisbane.

Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.

Though I have never heard of these games, today we have the Goodwill Games which Mason noted are the most prestigious international multi-sport invitational in the world, where athletes come together to put their greatness to the test.
The Goodwill Games invite only the best. Athletes are invited based on rankings and performances in major international competitions including Olympic Games, World Championships and past Goodwill Games.

The flag (logo placed on white background) has white continents, blue oceans, green ears, and a red star.

    Text: Flags and Logos of Intertational Sports Federations, Associations, and Organizations.
    Mason Kaye, February 19, 2004.
   Quoted by Rob Raeside, 19 February 2004.

The Goodwill Games have been discontinued since 2001. It was created by Ted Turner, who wanted a Olympic-style competition so athletes can get paid for their efforts. They also wanted something between the Olympic winter/summer games (but was not the case until 1992).
Zachary Harden, 19 February 2004.

The Goodwill Games were established by Ted Turner during the Cold War as a cultural-exchange thing involving the US and the USSR. They got decent press coverage and (needless to say) coverage on Turner's TV station. But cable wasn't so big in those days, so maybe it didn't get as much as it would today.
Do they still have them?
Albert S. Kirsch, 19 February 2004.

No. See
That site says they were begun since the US and USSR had not competed against each other in the 1980 or 1984 Olympics, because of the boycotts. Odd that an organization trying to bring them together would feature a red star on its flag.
Natham Lamm, 19 February 2004.

Another small bit of Goodwill-Games-related vex trivia: Seattle put the motto "City of Goodwill" on the flag it adopted in 1990 to commemorate its hosting of the Goodwill Games in that year.
Andrew S. Rogers, 19 February 2004.

This is from (probably not so good) memory, but I think that the Goodwill Games were "invented" by the Soviet block when boykoting the 1984 games in Los Angeles. At the same time when the official Olympic games were held in LA, the Goodwill Games were organized in Moscow with atlets from all those countries not going to LA.
I believe that since the Games were continued on more non-political idea(l)s, and apparently they made into the Olympic movement of today as something quite different (or I have missunderstood something). The red fivepointed star in the top of the emblem is still the indication of the games' origin...
Zeljko Heimer, 19 February 2004.

Flags of Goodwill Games

[1986 Goodwill Games flag]                [1986 Goodwill Games emblem]
Both images posted by Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.
Regifted by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán

The 1986 Goodwill Games Flag was a white rectangle with the Russian version of the games logo in the center. I have a graphic of the logo but the colors are wrong.

In 1994, Goodwill Games, Inc., issued a press release describing the logo:

"When the Goodwill Games were first established in 1986, event organizers wanted a logo that represented not only the global nature of the event, but also the bilateral hosting by the U.S. and the then-Soviet Union.
The concept for an appropriate logo went through many revisions until the present logo -- used in 1986, 1990, and 1994 -- was created and approved by all involved parties. Since it's adoption, the logo has been changed in two minor ways: changing the host city's name at the top, and changing the star from a solid red to blue, white, and red.

The individual elements of the Goodwill Games logo represent the following:

The ceremonial 1986 Goodwill Games Flag colors were as follows: Solid red star over map of world. Map of world was light blue continents on navy blue disc representing the sea. Five gold lines curve around sides of globe. Two gold laurel leaves curve around bottom of of globe. Between star and globe is the cyrillic letters "Mockba '86" in navy blue and between globe and center of olive branches in cyrillic letters meaning "Goodwill Games" in navy blue. The flag was 1:2 in proportion. This flag was raised to the strains of a special fanfare.

Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.

[1990 Goodwill Games flag]
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.
Regifted by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán

The 1990 Goodwill Games logo was similar to the 1986 one except for the following changes: The star was red, white, and blue - blue top half, top of the bottom points red, then a white gap. The bottom of the bottom points were also red. The stripes on each side of the globe were changed to blue as were the laurel branches. All the blue was made brighter, too. No ceremonial flag was used, but two hand held flags were carried at the head of the parade of nations at the Welcoming (Opening) Ceremony. One contained the Welcoming Ceremony symbol of a wreath made of intertwined red and blue ribbons, the ends of the ribbons trailing off toward the hoist, on a white field. The other had the 1990 Goodwill Games logo on a white field.
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.

[1994 Goodwill Games flag]
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.
Regifted by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán

The 1994 logo was essentially identical to the 1990 logo except for the name and date. The ceremonial flag was the russian version of the 1994 logo on a white field, 1:2 proportion. A special "Goodwill Games Hymn" was played during the raising and lowering of this flag.
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.

[1998 Goodwill Games flag]                [1998 Goodwill Games emblem]
Both images posted by Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.

The 1998 Goodwill Games saw a radical overhaul of the logo to reflect the end of the USA-USSR emphasis of the games. The name, date, lines, and "Goodwill Games" were changed to white and the star, while still split, became all red. The laurel branches became green. The whole was surrounded by a black border. This logo appeared on a ceremonial flag that was used only at the Closing Celebration. There the white flag was lowered and presented to Brisbane, the next host. (A similar flag was raised over the HQ of the Brisbane Organizing Committee.)
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.

[1998 Goodwill Games photo]
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.

[1998 Goodwill Games flag -variant-]
Mason Kaye, February 19, 2004.

[2000 Winter Goodwill Games emblem]
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.
Regifted by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán

In 2000, for the first time, A Goodwill "Winter" Games was held. The logo for these games scrapped the entire logo in favor of an original design. This logo was triangular with an illustration of the Lake Placid region inside a yellow and blue frame. No ceremonial flag was used (that I know of), but the logo appeared everywhere during the games (and possibly on venue flags.)
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.

[2001 Goodwill Games emblem]
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.
Regifted by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán

These games used the "generic" Goodwill Games logo within a fram of large yellow and green blocks. Several variations existed, all with the name and dates of the games arranged adjacent (below or beside) the actual logo. No ceremonial flag (that I know of) was used.
Erik Bell, 21 April 2004.