The World Games 2009 closing ceremony
Kaohsiung held the ‘best ever’ World Games, says IWGA President.
The World Games ended on 26 July with a brilliant closing ceremony. Taipei Times has a great summary of the evening. However, despite the fact that Taiwanese people treated the Chinese athletes like everyone else without hostility throughout the Games, the Chinese boycotted the closing ceremony again. Even more bizarre was that the Presidential Office and Ma Ying-jeou did not congratulate any of the World Games medalists but exchanged messages with China’s leader Hu Jing-tao immediately upon his ‘election victory’ over the Chinese Nationalist Party Chair.
Over the past 10 days, people in Kaohsiung and from all over Taiwan were excited about the event and took pride in what Kaohsiung has achieved. The ticket sale was not great before the opening but soared afterwards. A lot of people did not understand Korfball or the difference between weightlifting and powerlifing to begin with but still supported the competitions, learn about those sports and thoroughly enjoyed them. Not only was there a great sense of participation, there was also a sense of support for non-mainstream activities and celebrations for achievements in sports outside the mainstream.
Taiwanese, Kaohsiung people, have also shown their friendliness, warmth and helpfulness throughout the Games. They were more than happy to help guests from other cities, counties or countries. Thousands of volunteers worked hard to make sure everything went smoothly. Without them, the Games could not have been so successful. After Frank Hsieh’s administration won the bid, the City Government immediately recruited volunteers and started training them, including core skills, leadership, foreign languages, international customs and knowledge of those sports that the Taiwanese public is not familiar with.
Here’s a link that shows the whole ceremony. Brilliant performances and great atmosphere. It’s a must see! You’ll see that everyone in the stadium was holding a LED torch, which made the stadium look like a galaxy in the night. Apparently, all the torches were donated by the manufacturer.
If you want to see Frank Hsieh (former Kaohsiung mayor), Chen Chu (the current Mayor), the IWGA President Ron Froehlich, former Culture Affairs Councillor Chen Yu-shiou, DPP legislator Kwan Bi-ling and other guests dance with the music, please follow this link. I wouldn’t hazard a guess of the total number of years of age of this group but they sure enjoyed themselves like everyone else. It looked great and felt fantastic.