Kids of the world come to Lake Placid

Lake Placid’s 2019 International Children’s Winter Games mascot is Bernie the Bear. (Enterprise photo — Griffin Kelly)

LAKE PLACID — Three years ago, after a contingent of 18 young Team Lake Placid athletes returned from the International Children’s Winter Games in Innsbruck, Austria, this village proposed hosting the games here. This coming week, that’s exactly what’s going to happen.

Lake Placid is hosting the 2019 International Children’s Winter Games next week from Jan. 6 to 11, and the community is ready, according to ICWG Executive Director Eileen Mowrey. This is the first time the International Children’s Winter Games have been held in the U.S.

“I think that this is a kind of event that Lake Placid is very accustomed to hosting,” Mowrey said. “We’re used to welcoming the world on a world stage. I think this is something that the community is looking forward to, is ready for, and it’s certainly something that we as the organizing committee are excited to get underway.”

Lake Placid has hosted a number of international winter sporting events, from speedskating contests on Mirror Lake a century ago to the Olympic Winter Games in 1932 and 1980, a World University Games in 1972 and World Cup competitions such as luge, bobsled, skeleton and freestyle skiing. Yet, 19 years after hosting the Winter Goodwill Games, Lake Placid is once again bidding for, being awarded and hosting Olympic-like international competitions. In 2023, for example, Lake Placid will again host the World University Games.

When Lake Placid hosts these types of competitions, the community usually gets involved — from volunteers to athletes to spectators. The International Children’s Winter Games is an opportunity to show the world our community spirit, according to Mowrey.

“I think it’s a good way to get the community thinking about their involvement in the international sports community again,” Mowrey said. “It’s certainly something that’s always in the back of our minds, but to have 450 kids from 14 countries here I think is a good way to get people in that mindset again.”

About 450 athletes ages 12 to 15 will compete from 33 cities spanning 14 countries in eight sports: alpine skiing, freestyle skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, biathlon, long-track speedskating, figure skating and hockey. The events will be held at the Whiteface Mountain Ski Center in Wilmington and the Olympic Jumping Complex, Olympic Speedskating Oval and Olympic Center in Lake Placid.

The International Children’s Games were created 50 years ago, modeled after the Olympic Games. They are sanctioned by the International Olympic Committee, and the goal was to promote peace and friendship through sport and competition. Entry into competition for the ICWG is by invitation.

When Sue Cameron, Lake Placid’s ICWG volunteer, VIP and delegations director, returned from the International Children’s Summer Games in Jerusalem, Israel, last August, she stressed that having the best 12- to 15-year-old athletes in the world compete is not the point of the games.

“The selection process for the children that attend the children’s games is kind of different from other events in that the elite athletes from each city are not necessarily the ones who are chosen to come,” Cameron said. “They may well be, but they also base a lot of their selection process on what they think each child will get out of the event, the sportsmanship-type athlete, how they’ll experience the cultural exchange. So there are a lot of elements that go with the selection of athletes, and it’s not just to win everything.”

Instead, the ICG also focuses on cultural exchange. The theme for Lake Placid’s games is “Friendship and Sport Move Mountains.”

Who is coming

Other than Lake Placid, teams representing the U.S. will come from the following cities: Cleveland, Ohio; Twinsburg, Ohio; Frisco, Colorado; and Roseville, Minnesota. Team Lake Placid includes 67 athletes from the area, according to Mowrey.

“We have a very large Lake Placid delegation, and those kids are going to be interacting with other athletes from all over the world,” Mowrey said. “I think that’s a really good introduction to international sporting.”

The other cities participating will be: Graz and Innsbruck, Austria; Ancaster, Hamilton, Kelowna, Penticton, Port Moody and Windsor, Canada; Beijing and Changbaishan, China; Tartu, Estonia; Darmstadt, Germany; Naoussa, Greece; Szombathely, Hungary; Akureyri and Reykjavik, Iceland; Kaunas, Lithuania; Alkmaar, Netherlands; Gorje, Ljubno, Maribor and Velenje, Slovenia; Daegu, South Korea; and Delemont, Lausanne, Montreux, Saanen and Vevey, Switzerland.

The athletes arrive in Lake Placid on Sunday, Jan. 6 and leave Friday, Jan. 11. Headquarters for the ICWG will be the Lake Placid Conference Center, and the transportation hub will be the Main Street parking lot near the post office.

When not competing, athletes will get to meet fellow competitors through social activities aimed at inter-cultural learning and fellowship. They will gather together each night at in the conference center for learning activities and presentations, including a snowshoe expo, an Olympic athlete meet and greet, and team-building games by Experience Outdoors.

Prior to the opening ceremony on Monday is the Mayor’s Reception at the Crowne Plaza Resort. (Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly said athletes are invited to the Mayor’s Reception.) After the closing ceremony on Thursday, Jan. 10, there will be an Athlete Celebration — dance and skating party — at the conference center while the VIP Reception is held at Nicola’s restaurant across the street.

In addition to the athletes, there will be about 300 VIPs: coaches, heads of delegations, ICWG committee members and city representatives. The delegations and VIPs are staying at three hotels: Crowne Plaza Resort, Golden Arrow Lakeside Resort and Hotel North Woods.

Spectators

Monday is set aside as a training day for athletes, but spectators will be able to attend the opening ceremony at 7:30 that evening at the 1980 Rink – Herb Brooks Arena in the Olympic Center.

“We want to give the kids a really big, energetic welcome to the community and a big kickoff for the games, so we would like to have the community there and bring the spirit of Lake Placid,” Mowrey said.

The opening ceremony is free, open to the public. A live performance by the Montreal-based circus group Throw2Catch will entertain the audience with acrobatics, dance, theater and music. A local Adirondack choir of 150 students will perform, and there will be the lighting of the cauldron, signifying the opening of the games. The master of ceremonies will be magician and mentalist Gary Ferrar, of New York City. Doors open at 6:30, and tickets are not needed.

Competition is held throughout Tuesday and will end with an Athlete Parade starting at 6:30 p.m. at the Conference Center and ending at Mid’s Park on Main Street, where a fireworks display over Mirror Lake will begin around 7:45 p.m. The public is invited to attend these events. Main Street will be closed to traffic during the parade.

Competition continues through Wednesday and Thursday, and the games will end with a Closing Ceremony starting ay 7 p.m. in the 1932 Rink – Jack Shea Arena in the Olympic Center.

Admission to all the events is free. The only exception is taking the chairlift at the Olympic Jumping Complex and for skiers and snowboarders who want to take a lift to see the competition at Whiteface. There is an option for non-skier spectators to watch the competition at the finish line at Whiteface by taking a chairlift, but they have to walk back down to the lodge.

Support for the International Children’s Winter Games 2019 is provided by Market NY through I Love NY, New York state’s division of tourism, as a part of the Regional Economic Development Council awards. Local support comes from the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism, state Olympic Regional Development Authority and the Adirondack North Country Sports Council. For more information, visit www.lakeplacid2019.com.

TEAM LAKE PLACID

Here are the students representing Team Lake Placid during the 2019 International Children’s Winter Games, along with their hometowns, teams and, in the case of hockey players, positions:

Hockey

¯ Ferebee, Olivia, Elizabethtown, Saranac Lake Placid, goalie

¯ Dann, Sydney, Saranac Lake, Saranac Lake Placid, defense

¯ LaPlant, Claudia, Malone, Franklin Academy, defense

¯ Monette, Abby, Malone, Franklin Academy, defense

¯ St. Hillaire, Alyx, Malone, Malone Jr. Huskies, defense

¯ Patterson, Dariana, Lake Placid, Saranac Lake Placid, forward

¯ Patterson, Danaya, Lake Placid, Saranac Lake Placid, forward

¯ Smith, Iliana, Lake Placid, Northwood, forward

¯ Melicant, Paige, Lake Placid, Northwood, forward

¯ Perras, Julia, Malone, 46ers Hockey Club, forward

¯ Cook, Olivia, Chateaugay, Malone Jr. Huskies, forward

¯ Francis, Sydnee, Canton, Nepean Wildcats, forward

¯ St. Hilaire, Vail, Malone, Malone Jr. Huskies, forward

¯ Holland, Avery, Plattsburgh, Plattsburgh HS, forward

¯ Munn, Brayden, Bloomingdale, Sara-Placid, goalie

¯ Klemm, Lukas, Lake Placid, Northwood, defense

¯ Sturgeon, Carter, Saranac Lake, Syracuse Cadets, defense

¯ Kratts, Jon, Gabriels, St. Lawrence Steel, defense

¯ Munn, Nicholas, Bloomingdale, Sara-Placid, defense

¯ Smith, Jackson, Lake Placid, Lake Placid HS, defense

¯ Cook, Kade, Fort Covington, St. Lawrence Steel, defense

¯ Miller, Luke, Fort Covington, St. Lawrence Steel, defense

¯ Lynch, Jakob, Redwood, Thousand Island, forward

¯ Bullock, Brendan, Lake Placid, Lake Placid HS, forward

¯ Bartholomew, Bailey, Saranac Lake, Saranac Lake HS, forward

¯ Jones, Bryan, Potsdam, St. Lawrence Steel, forward

¯ Shaheen, Griffin, Tupper Lake, St. Lawrence Steel, forward

¯ Berkman, Tyler, Potsdam, St. Lawrence Steel, forward

¯ DelliQuadri, Peppi, Lake Placid, Lake Placid HS, forward

Alpine skiing

¯ Toishi, Sonja, Lake Placid, NYSEF-Whiteface

¯ Reynolds, Anna, Rowayton, Conn., NYSEF-Whiteface

¯ Broderick, Kate, Lake Placid, NYSEF-Whiteface

¯ Leonard, Micaela, Clifton Park, NYSEF-Gore

¯ Norfolk, Rowen, Lake Placid, NYSEF-Whiteface

¯ Galperin, Joseph, Great Neck, NYSEF-Whiteface

¯ Wright, Alex, Lake Placid, NYSEF-Whiteface

¯ Kelleher, Dan, Lake Placid, NYSEF-Whiteface

¯ Paton, Cole, Clifton Park, NYSEF-Gore

¯ Day, Carter, Lake Placid, NYSEF-Whiteface

Biathlon

¯ Kelting, Sophia, Paul Smiths, NYSEF

¯ Samburgh, Jordanna, Gabriels, NYSEF

¯ Wissler, Bella, Saranac Lake, Dewey

¯ Van Dorn, Abigail, Lake Placid, NYSEF

¯ Flanigan, Max, Lake Placid, NYSEF

¯ Douglas, Will, Lake Placid, NYSEF

¯ Nobles, Liam, Saranac Lake, Dewey

¯ Keal, Owen, Saranac Lake, Dewey

¯ Kenyon, Noah, Glenville, Lake Placid Ski Club

¯ Moffett, Luke, Peru, Lake Placid Ski Club

Nordic skiing

¯ Frantz, Tate, Lake Placid, NYSEF

¯ Scanio, Andrew, Lake Placid, NYSEF

¯ Linck, Daven, Saranac Lake, NYSEF

¯ Halasz, Galen, Saranac Lake, NYSEF

¯ Evans, Ellie, Lake Placid, NYSEF

¯ Rother, Lilly, Lake Placid, NYSEF

¯ Crane, Maise, Lake Placid, NYSEF

¯ Lawrence, Sydney, Lake Placid, NYSEF

Free skiing

¯ Bilow, Marc, Malone, NYSEF

¯ Hogan, Shea, Middle Grove, NYSEF

¯ Saltsman, Alexander, Altamont, NYSEF

¯ Shute, Pierson, Allendale, NJ, NYSEF

¯ Rose, Cooper, Lake Placid (Clifton Park), NYSEF

Long-track speedskating

¯ Ripchik, Ellie, Saratoga Springs, Adirondack SpeedSkating Club

¯ Clarke, Cassandra, Fulton, Adirondack SpeedSkating Club

¯ Hasselback, Gabriel, Hamburg, Adirondack SpeedSkating Club

¯ Hart-Gorman, Sammy, Syracuse, Adirondack SpeedSkating Club

Snowboard

¯ Sinclair, Robbie, Saranac Lake, NYSEF

SCHEDULE

Monday, Jan. 7

7:30 p.m. Opening Ceremony, Herb Brooks Arena, Olympic Center

Tuesday, Jan. 8

7 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Ice Hockey, boys games, 1980 Rink – Herb Brooks Arena, Olympic Center

7:15 a.m. – 5:45 p.m. Ice Hockey, girls games, USA Rink, Olympic Center

9-10:30 a.m. Cross-Country, Distance Classic, boys, Olympic Jumping Complex

9:30-10:15 a.m. Alpine, Giant Slalom, girls first run, Whiteface Mountain

10-10:45 a.m. Speedskating, Long Track, 500 meters, girls and boys, Olympic Speedskating Oval

10 a.m. – noon Freestyle, Slopestyle qualifications, girls and boys, Whiteface Mountain

10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Snowboard, Slopestyle qualifications, girls and boys, Whiteface Mountain

10:15-11 a.m. Alpine, Giant Slalom, boys first run, Whiteface Mountain

11 a.m. – noon Speedskating, Long Track, mass start, girls and boys, Olympic Speedskating Oval

11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Cross-Country, Distance Classic, girls, Olympic Jumping Complex

12:15 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Speedskating, 500 meters and mass start, Olympic Speedskating Oval

12:30-1:15 p.m. Alpine, Giant Slalom, girls second run, Whiteface Mountain

12:45 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Cross-Country, Distance Classic, Olympic Jumping Complex

1-2 p.m. Freestyle, Slopestyle finals, girls and boys, Whiteface Mountain

1-3 p.m. Biathlon, Sprint Distance, girls and boys, Olympic Jumping Complex

1:15-2 p.m. Alpine, Giant Slalom, boys second run, Whiteface Mountain

2-3:30 p.m. Snowboard, Slopestyle finals, girls and boys, Whiteface Mountain

2-4:45 p.m. Figure Skating, Girls Short Program, 1932 Rink – Jack Shea Arena, Olympic Center

2:15 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Freestyle, Slopestyle, Whiteface Mountain

3 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Alpine, Giant Slalom, Whiteface Mountain

3:15 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Biathlon, Sprint Distance, Olympic Jumping Complex

4 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Snowboard, Slopestyle, Whiteface Mountain

5-5:30 p.m. Figure Skating, Boys Short Program, 1932 Rink – Jack Shea Arena, Olympic Center

6:30-7:45 p.m. Parade down Main Street from Lake Placid Conference Center to Mid’s Park, followed by fireworks

Wednesday, Jan. 9

7 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Ice Hockey, boys games, USA Rink, Olympic Center

7:15 a.m. – 5:45 p.m. Ice Hockey, girls games, 1980 Rink – Herb Brooks Arena, Olympic Center

9-10 a.m. Cross-Country, Sprint Free Technique, qualifications, girls and boys, Olympic Jumping Complex

9:30-11 a.m. Alpine, Parallel Slalom (mixed teams), qualifications, Whiteface Mountain

10-11 a.m. Speedskating, Long Track, 1,000 meters, girls and boys, Olympic Speedskating Oval

10 a.m. – noon Cross-Country, Sprint Free Technique, heats, boys and girls, Olympic Jumping Complex

10:45-11:30 a.m. Snowboard, Cross, time trials, Whiteface Mountain

11:15 a.m. – noon Speedskating, Long Track, Sprint Pursuits, girls and boys, Olympic Speedskating Oval

Noon – 2:30 p.m. Alpine, Parallel Slalom (mixed teams), finals, Whiteface Mountain

12:15 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Speedskating, 1,000 meters and Sprint Pursuits, Olympic Speedskating Oval

12:45 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Cross-Country, Sprint, Olympic Jumping Complex

1-2:30 p.m. Snowboard, Cross, finals, Whiteface Mountain

1-4:30 p.m. Figure Skating, Girls Free Skate, 1932 Rink – Jack Shea Arena, Olympic Center

2-4 p.m. Biathlon, Sprint, girls and boys, Olympic Jumping Complex

2 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Snowboard, Cross, Whiteface Mountain

3:30 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Alpine, Parallel Slalom (mixed teams), Whiteface Mountain

4:15 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Biathlon, Sprint, Olympic Jumping Complex

4:45-5:15 p.m. Figure Skating, Boys Free Skate, 1932 Rink – Jack Shea Arena, Olympic Center

5:30-5:45 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Figure Skating, girls and boys, 1932 Rink – Jack Shea Arena, Olympic Center

Thursday, Jan. 10

7:45-9:55 a.m. Ice Hockey, Girls Games (seeds 5, 6, 7), USA Rink, Olympic Center

8-10:10 a.m. Ice Hockey, Boys Games (seeds 5, 6, 7), 1980 Rink – Herb Brooks Arena, Olympic Center

9:30-11 a.m. Cross-Country, Mixed Team Relay, Olympic Jumping Complex

10:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. Ice Hockey, Girls Bronze Medal Game, USA Rink, Olympic Center

10:30 a.m. – noon Figure Skating, Mixed Team Exhibition, 1932 Rink – Jack Shea Arena, Olympic Center

10:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Ice Hockey, Girls Gold Medal Game, 1980 Rink – Herb Brooks Arena, Olympic Center

11:15 a.m. Medal Ceremony, Cross-Country, Mixed Team Relay, Olympic Jumping Complex

12:15-2:30 p.m. Freestyle/Alpine, Ski Cross, Mixed Delegations, Whiteface Mountain

12:30-2:15 p.m. Ice Hockey, Boys Bronze Medal Game, USA Rink, Olympic Center

12:45-2:30 p.m. Ice Hockey, Boys Gold Medal Game, 1980 Rink – Herb Brooks Arena, Olympic Center

2-3:30 p.m. Biathlon, Mixed Team Relays, Olympic Jumping Complex

2:45 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Ice Hockey, boys and girls, 1980 Rink – Herb Brooks Arena, Olympic Center

3 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Freestyle/Alpine, Ski Cross, mixed delegations, Whiteface Mountain

3:45 p.m. Medal Ceremony, Biathlon, Mixed Teams Relay, Olympic Jumping Complex

7 p.m. Closing Ceremony, 1932 Rink – Jack Shea Arena, Olympic Center

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