The South Stand has been emblazoned with the Games’ signature for the last couple of years and now the event has arrived. Around 1,200 competitors from 76 cities in 34 countries paraded on the well protected pitch to the cheers from three packed stands.
The home team arrives
The crowd was one that the football club must envy. Lots of friends and relatives as well as interested spectators enjoyed the summer sunshine and the warm up entertainment which had clowns, Mexican waves and pipe bands.
Fir Park regulars would have been impressed by the sound of an excellent sound system that carried the announcer’s voice as well as the live music clearly and with plenty volume to every part of the ground. The host organising committee have made much of the lasting legacy that will come from the Games – if only they would leave those speakers and amplifiers behind!
The only disappointment was that the club shop was not open. There may have been a restriction imposed by the organisers but if not we missed a great opportunity.
After the parade, led by the Braidhurst Samba band, there were a couple of musical items (including Ode to Joy played on the pipes!), and the lighting of the flame. All the teams were well supported and far flung places like Beijing, Los Angeles, Baghdad were on show. The Ediburgh contingent got a welcome that should be much warner than that to be extended to the other team from the capital that will visit Motherwell on Sunday. The biggest cheer was reserved for the host team, Lanarkshire. Then five hundred dancers stole the show with a vibrant series that had the crowd on its feet.
What say you - Voice_in _the_sky?
The nine sports which are in this set of games will take place all over Lanarkshire. The football tournament will be at the Palace Sports Grounds in Hamilton on Friday, Saturday and Sunday kicking off from 9am until late afternoon.
More information on the Games can be found here.