July 17, 2012
They were here, and now they’re gone – all in the blink of an eye. The World Choir Games, the 11-day choir competition was a big success for the Queen City. We welcomed hundreds of choirs and thousands of visitors to the banks of the Ohio. We proved to ourself and others that “world class” is what we’re all about.
We aren’t New York, Paris, or Tokyo. But it’s ok because we are Cincinnati–a city dripping in culture, oozing in talent, and boy can we sing.
With over 200 events it’s hard to rank the best, so I won’t even try. I will, however, recap some of my favorite moments as captured by the camera.
The games officially began when the World Choir Game Peace Bell (made right here in Cincinnati at the historic Verdin Bell Company) was rung seven times as a call for nations to unite and sing in peace. The bell also closed out the games at Saturday night’s ceremonies.
WELKOM – ALOHA – BENVENUTO – VELKOMMEN – SHALOM – AHLAN’WA SAHLA
We broke out the china and polished the silver as we welcomed thousands of new guests to our city. We can only hope they enjoyed their stay as much as we enjoyed being their host.
WHIRL, THE MASCOT
Not gonna lie I don’t really understand Whirl. Then again it probably isn’t easy coming up with a mascot for a choir competition. But it doesn’t really matter if I “get” Whirl, what matters is we hosted the World Choir Games; we had a freaking mascot and because of it thousands of tourists snapped pictures with him. That’s pretty rad.
GOOD MORNING AMERICA – GOOD MORNING CINCINNATI
Drew Lachey, Julie Calvert, and Kendall from Channel 9
The Good Morning America crew came to Cincinnati on Monday, July 9 to see what the World Choir Games are all about. Nothing puts you on the map like national exposure. Nice work Cincy!
PARADE OF NATIONS
On Tuesday, July 10 the choirs participated in a parade through downtown Cincinnati. It was one of my favorite events over the 11 days for its Hallmark, tear-jerker quality. People kept saying the games were about more than competition they were about the power of song, and its ability to unite. The parade of nations did just that, and by that I mean: “I had chills. They were multiplying. Cuz the power the parade was supplying, it was electrifying.”
Team Canada doing the wave. If this picture doesn’t scream HAPPY CAMPER then I don’t know what does. Look at those smiles.
That’s right we had Tony award winning singer Idina Menzel perform at the closing ceremonies.
Take a bow Cincinnati — you did it. We did it! So the question on everyone’s mind: what’s next?
Right now we’re taking to the figurative streets, i.e., the twittersphere as we wage a campaign to bring the 2015 All Star Game to Cincinnati. If you want to jump on the bandwagon start tweeting #RedsASG2015.
Photo credits: Ken Munsonto top ↑