38th Empire State Winter Games kicks off with record-breaking Opening Ceremony
Guest appearances by USA Freestyle Aerialist Team and NYS Lieutenant Governor
The 2018 Empire State Winter Games kicked off on Thursday, February 1 with record-breaking attendance at an Opening Ceremony in the Herb Brooks Arena at the Lake Placid Olympic Center. Athletes, friends, family, and the community were joined by the USA Freestyle Aerialist Team and NYS Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul to celebrate the 38th year of the Games.
Live music performances by Nik and the Nice Guys and the Brooklyn Children’s Theater fueled the already lively audience, and high-flying trampoline demonstrations by the Elite USA Aerialist Development Team stunned audiences. The Parade of Athletes brought participants from every discipline onto the ice, coating the arena in a sea of white and black plaid.
The ceremonial ESWG Cauldron was lit by Susan Bingham, a Cross Country athlete from the Syracuse region who, despite her MS diagnosis, continues to compete as an inspiration to her daughter. Susan’s story is an excellent example of the Empire State Winter Game’s mission – to get everyone to come out and play.
The event’s record-breaking attendance is the precursor to a much larger Games this year. The addition of several exciting new sports, including a Rail Jam competition at Titus Mountain and a NorX exhibition competition in the ESWG Village, as well as a larger pool of participants and an expanded spectator experience have evolved the nearly-forgotten Games into a true festival of winter sports competition.
The Empire State Winter Games will continue from February 2 – 4 in Lake Placid and the surrounding region. The ESWG Village, hosted in downtown Lake Placid, will feature live music and event coverage, high speed tubing and zip-lining, samples of local food at Taste of the Games, local craft beverages, and a chance to spectate thrilling winter bike competitions as they fly straight through the center of the Village.
Experience the excitement of the Empire State Winter Games by purchasing and exclusive ESWG Olympic Sites Passport, which will grant you admission to the various Olympic Venues where competitions are being held. To learn more about the weekend’s events, visit www.empirestatewintergames.com.