Solemn Opening Ceremony of traditional Paralympic sport festival “Parafest” took place in Grand Hall of the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC) head-quarters.
Participants of the Opening Ceremony:
· Vladimir Lukin – President of the RPC;
· Vladimir Malits – Director of Physical and Mass Sport Development Department of the Ministry of Sport of Russia;
· Andrey Strokin – RPC Secretary General, 5-times Paralympic champion;
· Lev Seleznev – President of the Russian Federation of Sport for Persons with Physical Impairment (RFSPPI), RPC Governing Board member;
· Olga Semenova – Secretary General of the RFSPPI, 3-time Paralympic champion;
· Dmitry Kotyrev – Director of State Budget Enterprise of Moscow Region “Center of Paralympic, Deaflympic and non-Olympic Sports”.
RPC President Vladimir Lukin addressed to the participants of the competitions with a welcome speech:
“With all my soul I welcome You all at the traditional Paralympic Sport festival “Parafest”. It is not a first time when we are all gather to determine the best athletes in sports for persons with physical impairment. We are all awaiting the competitions of wheelchair dance sport, chess, checkers, boccia, datrts, powerlifting as well as exhibition performance in wheelchair curling. I am glad to note the every year brings us more athletes, and also geography of participants extended. I wish all participants good mood and healthy competitions”
Vladimir Malits delivered the welcome speech from the Minister of Sport Pavel Kolobkov.
At the conclusion of the Ceremony Lev Seleznev declared the festival open.
After the Ceremony Vladimir Lukin talked with athletes and watched wheelchair dance sport competitions.
More than 130 athletes from 22 organizations and 14 Russian region are taking part in the competitions.
This year is the first for wheelchair dance sport as the Festival as well as for wheelchair curling. The exhibition performance will be shown by the head coach of the Russian national team Anton Batugin.
Also during “Parafest” Festival Anti-doping Quiz “Outreach” was conducted together with Russian Anti-doping Agency “RUSADA” and Russian Federation of Sports for Persons with Physical Impairment. The Quiz was developed by WADA in the frames of global education program Outreach. It is a game that allows participants to check their knowledge about anti-doping.
Traditional Parafest Festival was held from 2009 together with the Ministry of Sport and Russian Paralympic Committee.