Colombia's President Misael Pastrana officially opened the site of the Pan American Games at Cali, Colombia on Saturday (24 July).
Colombia's President Misael Pastrana officially opened the site of the Pan American Games at Cali, Colombia on Saturday (24 July). During the ceremony, which included a military parade, the President toured the site and inspected the facilities for the variety of events comprising the international competitions.
Three hundred and eighty athletes from 30 countries will be participating in the games, which begin of Friday (30 July) and continue until August 13.
SYNOPSIS: Cali, in Colombia, will take on the role as the host city for 380 athletes from all over the hemisphere when the Pan American Games begin on Friday. Thirty nations will participate.
Last Saturday, the games site was officially opened by Colombia's President Pastrana. During a day of touring the site, the swimming pool was inaugurated by the President in a brief ceremony in which a ribbon was cut. With the President was Columbian swimming champion Olga Lucia de Angulo.
One of the highlights of the new games site is a new gymnasium. Many of the facilities were built specifically for the games.
The President and his entourage toured a new cycle stadium in which a number of events will take place.
A feature of the Cali site is this university city. It's here that the athletes will stay for the duration of the games.
In another ceremonial moment, the President officially handed over the flag to the Colombian team. During the day, the President expressed his satisfaction with the progress at the site. In common with many other cities hosting international sporting events, many of Cali's games facilities are in different parts of the city.
The day's events continued with a military parade reviewed by the President and his party in honour the occasion.
Bands and military vehicles took part in the parade which was watched by a large crowd. The crowd included girls from the Games Information Service who were on hand for the event.
Among those who took part in Saturday's activities was Games Director Jorge Herrera. Senor Herrera was one of the people involved in the construction of the games facilities. The parade meant that the facilities were ready for use.