The CANUSA Games are an annual contest, primarily for athletes age 18 and under, between the sister cities of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and Flint, Michigan, United States. The Games are the longest-running amateur sports competition in North America.[1] The games are held in alternate locations, with Hamilton, Ontario, hosting in odd-numbered years.[2]


As a result of the Flint Olympian Games held in Flint, Michigan, in July 1957, the Flint officials of the Games wanted a city, of similar size and population, to compete with on a yearly basis. Hamilton was selected, which birthed the "CANUSA" games, whose name was derived from combining the names Canada and United States - CAN/USA.

The Games began in August 1958, and consisted of 200 athletes (from each city) competing in seven different sports. The Games have grown considerably, which is supported by the more than 1,600 athletes from each city competing in 17 different competitive sports, including basketball, baseball, softball, volleyball, darts, golf, track and field, swimming and ice hockey.[2] An estimated 25,000 people have participated in the games in their 50 years.[3]

Opening Ceremonies

The Opening Ceremonies of the CANUSA Games are arguably the most highlighted piece of the weekend. One of these highlights is most certainly the running relay which covers the distance between Flint and Hamilton - 245 miles. Departing the night before from the visiting city, relay runners carry the torch over the border, which is one of the longest international runs in all of North America. The torch is run into the venue in which the opening ceremonies are held, which represents the official start of the Games.[4]

To symbolize the relationship between the sister cities, the national anthems (from both nations) are sung by everyone present at the Opening Ceremonies. The Friendship Trophy is also given by the Mayor of the host city to the Mayor of the visiting city as a symbol of friendship and peace. The Games take the true meaning of friendship to task as each year the visiting country's athletes "billet" or reside with their counterparts during the entire weekend beyond competition. It is considered the signature of the Game's existence.[4]


Edition Host Notes
1957 Flint, Michigan, USA The Flint Olympian Games, a prelude to the first CANUSA Games
1958 Flint, Michigan, USA The first CANUSA Games
1959 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada The First CANUSA Games held in Hamilton
1960 Flint, Michigan, USA The first Harold Webster Trophy was awarded (Track & Field)
1961 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1962 Flint, Michigan, USA
1963 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1964 Flint, Michigan, USA
1965 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1966 Flint, Michigan, USA The first Jimmy Thompson Memorial Award Trophy was awarded (swimming)
1967 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1968 Flint, Michigan, USA The first Bernie Arbour Memorial Trophy was awarded (baseball)
1969 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada The first Ivan Miller Award was awarded (volunteer)
1970 Flint, Michigan, USA
1971 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1972 Flint, Michigan, USA
1973 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1974 Flint, Michigan, USA
1975 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1976 Flint, Michigan, USA
1977 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1978 Flint, Michigan, USA
1979 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1980 Flint, Michigan, USA
1981 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1982 Flint, Michigan, USA
1983 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1984 Flint, Michigan, USA
1985 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1986 Flint, Michigan, USA
1987 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1988 Flint, Michigan, USA
1989 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1990 Flint, Michigan, USA
1991 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1992 Flint, Michigan, USA
1993 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1994 Flint, Michigan, USA The Games' first paid Business Administrator
1995 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1996 Flint, Michigan, USA The first W. Clarence Willson Memorial Trophy was awarded (girls basketball)
1997 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
1998 Flint, Michigan, USA
1999 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada The first Marg Brokenshire Memorial Award was given (Hamilton person that "goes the extra mile")
2000 Flint, Michigan, USA
2001 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2002 Flint, Michigan, USA
2003 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2004 Flint, Michigan, USA
2005 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2006 Flint, Michigan, USA
2007 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada The first Bill Sturrup Memorial Trophies were awarded (golf)
2008 Flint, Michigan, USA
2009 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2010 Flint, Michigan, USA
2011 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada Flint wins its first road Games since 1959
2012 Flint, Michigan, USA Flint wins third consecutive Games
2013 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2014 Flint, Michigan, USA
2015 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2016 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada Hosting duties taken over by Hamilton due to ongoing Flint water crisis.[5]
2017 Flint, Michigan, USA
2018 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2019 Flint, Michigan, USA
2020 cancelled Cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic[6]
2021 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2022 Flint, Michigan, USA
2023 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
2024 Flint, Michigan, USA


  1. ^ Whitwell, Carli. "CANUSA games kick off", The Hamilton Spectator, 2008-08-08. Retrieved on 2008-12-05.
  2. ^ a b "Canusa Games 2007". Archived from the original on 2008-12-16. Retrieved 2008-11-30.
  3. ^ Holmes, Kevin. "CANUSA Games celebrate 50 years Archived 2011-05-21 at the Wayback Machine", ABC12 News, 2007-05-09. Retrieved on 2008-12-05.
  4. ^ a b CANUSA Games History[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ "Hamilton will host this year's CANUSA Games | AM900 CHML | Hamilton News". 2016-03-30. Archived from the original on March 30, 2016. Retrieved 2016-03-30.
  6. ^ brittanyn (2020-05-27). "PRESS RELEASE: 2020 CANUSA GAMES CANCELLATION". Crim Fitness Foundation. Retrieved 2020-12-17.