A lavish show jump starts Interski congress 2019 in Pamporovo

March 17 2019

The 21st Congress of the international organization of ski instructors, Interski 2019, had its lavish opening show in Pamporovo, Bulgaria, featuring a variety of ski technique demonstrations, lots of music and a swirl of emotions. The show, performed before a live audience of over 1,000 gathered in front of the Studenetz Chalet, was broadcast live on Bulgarian National Television. The program featured the Chinarifolk ensemble, the bands Mystic and 4 Magic as well as over a hundred girls and boys from the nearby towns of Chepelare and Smolyan and the entire region.

The 35 participating countries were represented in a solemn procession of nations by children from the sports clubs in the region flying their national flags while skiing down Stenata slope. Boys and girls from Smolyan and Chepelare demonstrated their skiing and snowboarding skills in traditional costumes to the accompaniment of a band of 101 local bagpipes.

The Bulgarian demo team, comprising instructors from the country’s biggest winter resorts, former national ski stars and one of the few disabled skiers in Bulgaria, VladiGyurov, dazzled the audience with their outstanding skiing technique.

The official guest list at the event was topped by Deputy Prime Minister TomislavDonchev, who is the honorary patron of the Interski Congress 2019; and included the Chair of the Organizing Committee TsvetelinaBorislavova, the President of Interski Erich Melmer, the Minister of Youth and Sports KrasenKralev, the Minister of Tourism NikolinaAngelkova, the Chairman of the Board of the Bulgarian Ski School Association Assoc. Prof. PetarYankov, the mayor of Chepelare Municipality SlavkaChakarova, the mayor of Smolyan Municipality Nikolay Melemov and the Regional Governor of SmolyanNedyalkoSlavov.

‘In Bulgaria we have at least five more mountains with superb skiing conditions, but Pamporovo is a special place,’ said Deputy Prime Minister Donchev at the opening ceremony. ‘Sport is very important for us, therefore we invest in infrastructure. Last year we hosted four world championshipsin this country. But when it comes to sports, the most important thing is to participate rather than watch it on TV. Sport is about business, it is about tourism, even international politics, so hosting the Interski Congress 2019 is a unique chance for Bulgaria.’

‘We hope that in addition to all the hard work it will involve, the Interski Congress will be a time for pleasure, too,’ said TsvetelinaBorislavova. ‘Pamporovo wishes you a lot of success.Have a terrific time together and take home memorable moments from this magic place, the Rhodope Mountains, the cradle of the ancient Thracian civilization.’

The Interski Congress 2019 was officially opened by Erich Melmer, the President of the organization, who handed the Interski flag to PetarYankov, the Chairman of the Board of the Bulgarian Ski School Association, wishing the participants in the Congress to exchange knowledge, to stay united and to gain an insight into the culture of the Rhodope area and Bulgaria. ‘Interski was established 56 years ago by four nations,’ said Erich Melmer. ‘At that time, no one expected it to bring together so many people from all over the world with an interest in skiing. I wish to thank everybody who spent so much time in Pamporovo in the past four years in order to make this opening happen. Interski has been developing over the years and has changed a lot. For a long time, skiing techniques and the methods of teaching them were central for these congresses. But now things are different. Now we want to demonstrate how important it is to preserve the environment, and that ski instructors have a decisive role to play in that respect. The main goal of Interski is to bring people together so that they exchange knowledge and expertise and stay united. I open Interski Congress 2019 with a quote from our founder, Prof.Kukenhauser: “We need to talk to one another.” And that’s my message to you, too.’

The next item on the show’s program was a real stunner: a downhill dash by the all-stars team of Bulgaria featuring outstanding athletes like Ekaterina Dafovska, PetarPopangelov, RadoslavYankov, Aleksandra Zhekova, RenetaKamberova, SnezhanaDocheva, RumyanaNeikova and YordanYovchev.

The ceremony continued with downhill races by 28 demo teams of the nations participating in the Congress. All of them demonstrated superb technique in handling the skis or snowboard, proving that snow can be a canvas on which genuine art is created.