The City of Cape Town is getting ready to launch into the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ in style, with a 10 hour-long “Cape Town Welcomes the World Party” on the eve of the official kick-off.
The party on the Grand Parade on Thursday 10 June 2010 will be the culmination of the City’s many hospitality initiatives, and will be built around the theme of welcoming the world to the southern tip of Africa.
Local residents and visitors will have the opportunity to be part of the celebration and get into the football spirit.
About 25 000 people are expected on the Grand Parade for a concert featuring an exciting line-up of mostly local artistes. The concert will start at 14:00, and at 18:30 flaming torches will light a cauldron on the City Hall balcony – from which Nelson Mandela made his first speech after his release – to signal the start of the carnival parade.
At 19:00, the Rainbow Parade featuring 2 000 Cape Minstrels will move through the city centre.
The party will also include the switch-on of eight colourful soccer streetlight displays in Adderley Street. About 10km of rope lights was used to create the displays. These use 55% less energy than traditional light bulbs.
“The City wants to position itself as the party capital of the world. This party promises to be bigger, better and safer than any of the previous parties,” said Cape Town Executive Mayor, Dan Plato.
Law enforcement officials will be out in full force, and trains will run until 01:00. Bus services – including the City’s newly-launched MyCiTi service, will also be operational. Food and art stalls as well as toilet facilities will be available.
Executive Deputy Mayor, Alderman Ian Neilson, posed for photographs with some of the performers at a preview event.
“It’s very exciting, after four years of planning – in which we built a stadium and a transport system – it’s finally here.
“And in just over a month, it’s all going to be over, so we’ve got to grab this opportunity and make the most of it,” he said.
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