Chinese National Ethnic Games closed in Guiyang
Updated: 2011-09-18 20:56
GUIYANG - As the flame of the ninth Chinese National Ethnic Games went out at the Guiyang Olympic Sports Center, the nine-day ethnic sports meet combined with culture and folk-custom shows, lowered the curtain here on Sunday night.
A closing ceremony of China's 9th National Ethnic Games is held at the Olympic Sports Center at Guiyang, capital of Southwest China's Guizhou province, Sept 18, 2011. [Photo/Xinhua]
"I now declare the ninth National Traditioanl Games of Ethnic Minorities of the People's Republic of China close," said Dai Bingguo, Chinese State Councilor at the closing ceremony.
It is the first time for a multi-sports Games to be held in China's southwestern province Guizhou, one of the country's most undeveloped provinces, but rich in natural landscapes and ethnic minority cultures, which makes home of 17 native minority nationalities besides the largest nationality the Hans.
A one-minute video capturing pictures of athletes from different nationalities during the games was played on the big screen before the 34 delegations paraded into the center of the stadium. And all delegations were awarded for their sportsmanship in the competitions.
Around 75,000 volunteers, 40,000 of whom were in service outside the competing venues, have been recruited to serve the games, and they were honored for helping to make the organizational aspect of the Games a success. The representatives from the 17 ethnic groups in Guiyang present flowers to volunteer representatives to show their appreciation.
In keeping with closing ceremony tradition, Tondrub Wangbum, vice minister of the State Commission for Ethnic Affairs passed the flag of Ethnic Games from Liu Xiaokai, deputy governor of Guizhou to Liu Xinle, deputy governor of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.
Northern Chinese city Erdos of the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region will host the next edition of the quadrennial event in 2015. Erdos has committed to hold a jolly and harmony version of Ethnic Games for the multi-national country. It will be the second time that the traditional games for the sports and culture gala to be brought in Inner Mongolia.
The Inner Mongolia delegation was given some five minutes to stage an exotic folk performance before the main closing ceremony performance themed "Beautiful flowers and full moon" took stage.
The cheerful farewell party came to an emotional moment as a song named "Don't go my friends" brought the atmosphere to a high tide. Artists, athletes and volunteers all started to sing and dance hand-in-hand on the stage while the flame in the main cauldron slowly went out to conclude the nine-day carnival-like meet in Guiyang, capital city of Guizhou.
With a biggest ever participation, the ninth Chinese Traditional Games of Ethnic Nationalities has assembled over 6,700 athletes for a total of 16 medal events and 186 demonstration events.
Rather than a competition for medals, the ethnic games are more of a happy gathering for China's 55 ethnic groups. It gathers the athletes of the 55 Chinese ethnic nationalities, which account about 8.49 percent of the country's population of 1.37 billion besides the largest nationality the Hans, and has long been reckoned an important presence in maintaining the 55 ethnic groups' own rich traditions and customs.