Germany - Today the one-year countdown, to the Vancouver 2010
Paralympic Winter Games begins. The occasion will be marked by a
number of celebrations in Ottawa, Vancouver and Whistler,
Sir Philip Craven, President of the International
Paralympic Committee (IPC), will celebrate the milestone today with
the official raising of the Paralympic Flag and a number of events
organized by the Government of Canada at Parliament Hill in Ottawa
along with Prime Minister Steven Harper, John Furlong, CEO of the
Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic
Games (VANOC), Carla Qualtrough, President of the Canadian Paralympic
Committee and other high-ranking officials.
In Vancouver, the
public is invited to come and have their photo taken with Vancouver
2010 Paralympic mascot Sumi in front of the Vancouver 2010 Countdown
Clock, where cupcakes will be served and Paralympic stickers handed
Whistler at the same time will be the place to mingle
with some of the world’s top Paralympic Alpine Skiers starting with
the awards celebration for the IPC Alpine Skiing World Cup Finals in
the afternoon, followed by the distribution of Countdown Cake and a
festive countdown celebration at the base of the Games venue.
Sir Philip: “With the beginning of this great countdown, Paralympic
athletes and fans of the Paralympic Movement are joyfully looking
forward to a unique experience in March 2010. From this day onwards,
the excitement will mount every single day. Preparations related to
the Paralympic Games are fully underway and next week I will have the
pleasure of personally inviting the National Paralympic Committees of
the world to come to Vancouver and Whistler for the 2010 Paralympic
Winter Games. The courage and determination of Paralympians are
breathtaking and their personal stories are inspirational for all of
us. I can only recommend all to attend the Games - as a
participant, volunteer or spectator!”
During the last few
weeks, spectators and fans already had the opportunity to watch
Paralympic Sport at the test events on the downhill runs,
cross-country trails and state-of-the-art biathlon range in Whistler,
as well as the brand-new rinks built to host Wheelchair Curling and
Ice Sledge Hockey in Vancouver.
Next week, the Chef de Mission
Seminar will gather delegates of around 30 National Paralympic
Committees to receive updates on topics including Qualification,
Accreditation, Sport Entries, Classification, Sport and Venues,
Transport, Paralympic Village and NPC Services. Besides various
presentations and workshops aiming at briefing the NPCs on the
preparations for the Winter Paralympics, listening to their needs and
seeking their opinions and suggestions to improve the preparations,
the Seminar includes a venue tour to competition venues and the
At the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter
Games, approximately 600 athletes from 45 countries are expected to
compete in five sports: Alpine Skiing, Biathlon, Cross-Country
Skiing, Ice Sledge Hockey and Wheelchair Curling.
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