FIVE QUESTIONS WITH: JAY KASTEN
The World Games 2021 is just over 500 days away, and the Birmingham Organizing Committee is working hard to make sure The 2021 Games will be the most memorable edition yet.
Today, meet Vice President of Operations Jay Kasten, who brings more than a decade of sports event management experience to The World Games 2021. In his role, Kasten oversees the planning, staffing, managing and execution of all event operations. Now, he’s answering questions about his experience working for The World Games 2021 and how the event will leave a legacy on the city of Birmingham.
1. For you, what’s the most rewarding part of working for The World Games 2021?
“The World Games 2021 is going to be the largest sporting event in the history of Birmingham and will put us on an international stage, so the opportunity to be intrinsically part of it is very exciting. This event will leave a long-lasting legacy for our community and I’m honored to be involved.”
2. In your view, what makes Birmingham the ideal city for The World Games 2021?
“We’re a big city, but everything is tied together. About 85% of the major venues for The World Games 2021 are within a three-mile radius of each other. This ability to get around easily will offer fans a great opportunity to see as many sports in action as possible.”
3. With just over 500 days to go until The World Games 2021, what are you working on right now?
“Right now, I’m working on finalizing all venue overlays and figuring out what every location will look like. There are several factors that go into each one. You start with the field of play, then you take a bird’s eye view, looking at how all of the operational pieces fit together. There are numerous details that go into each and every site, and we’re working to ensure that everything comes together seamlessly during Games time.”
4. What are you most looking forward to once The World Games 2021 arrives?
“I’ve worked in sports my whole career. The reason that I chose this path is because I remember the impact sporting events had on me as a child. That’s the impact we’re going to carry through The World Games 2021. People are going to talk about The World Games 2021 just like they talk about the 1996 Olympics [held in Atlanta, GA]. Everyone will remember where they were during The World Games 2021.”
5. What Birmingham hot spots would you encourage international guests to visit?
“Food and drink are an international language, and the restaurant scene here is incredible. Whether you’re visiting one of our great restaurants or checking out a Birmingham brewery, there’s truly for something for everyone to enjoy. The service industry should benefit significantly from The World Games 2021. Birmingham does hospitality really well.”