Cebu City Olympic games to be played in Naga City

City of Naga.
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DUE to the ongoing renovation of the Cebu City Sports Center (CCSC), two of the major games for this year’s 31st Cebu City Olympics will be held outside Cebu City.

In a press conference held at the Department of Education-Cebu City Division (DepEd-CCD) building on Thursday, Jan. 25, 2024, Francis Ramirez, DepEd Division sports coordinator, said due to the ongoing civil works in the CCSC, the athletic and swimming competitions will be held at the Naga City Sports Complex (NCSC) in Naga City, Cebu for the first time.

However, Ramirez said the majority of the games will be held in Cebu City.

The 31st Cebu City Olympics is scheduled to take place from Jan. 27 to Feb. 2, 2024.

The opening ceremony will be held at the Cebu Coliseum on Sanciangko St., Cebu City, with 10,000 athletes and officials expected to attend.

Ramirez said the Cebu City Government has allocated a budget of P12 million to cover various expenses.

This year’s City Olympics include the following sports events: Archery, Arnis, Athletics, Baseball, Basketball, Badminton, Billiard, Boxing, Chess, Dancesports, Cultural, Gymnastics, Football, Futsal, Karatedo, Scrabble, Sepak Takraw, Softball, Swimming, Taekwondo, Tennis, Table Tennis, Volleyball, Wrestling, Wushu, Mr. & Ms. CCO, Pencak Silat, and Para Games.

The different venues for the games include Filinvest, South Road Properties, CCSC, Naga City Sports Complex, Labangon E.S. Ground, B Sports Institute, Cebu Coliseum, Cebu Eastern College Gym, Cebu City Sports Center, Cebu City Sports Institute, SM City Seaside Cebu, Labangon Elementary School (E.S.) Gym, University of San Jose-Recoletos Basak Covered Court, Robinsons Galleria, Oppra Elementary School Gym, Labangon E.S. Grounds, City Green, Bo. Luz E.S. and Lahug E.S., University of Southern Philippines-Foundation Gym and Covered Court, New Cebu Coliseum, and Zapatera E.S. Gym.

In the same press conference, Adolf Aguilar, DepEd assistant schools division superintendent, said the allocated budget will cover expenses for food, equipment, uniforms and the officials’ honoraria.

According to Ramirez, the CCSC can still be used for some sports events, saying that although the rubber track oval has not been installed yet, the center field is ready.

Ramirez also said the stage used during the Sinulog sa Dakbayan and Sinulog sa Lalawigan last Jan. 13 and 14 had already been removed and the area is being prepared for the upcoming event.

Qualifying meet

The City Olympics serves as Cebu City’s division meet, where athletes compete to secure a spot on the city’s team for the regional meet. Participation in the lower meets is a prerequisite for athletes aiming to compete in the Palarong Pambansa.

“You cannot compete in the Palarong Pambansa if you will not compete in the lower level meets. So it is a series of progression... You need to pass the layers of qualifying meets,” Aguilar said.

According to Ramirez, the participants are student athletes enrolled in Cebu City only, saying they have nine units composed of different schools.

He said one unit is a combination of two districts like Mambaling and Guadalupe, a composition of both public and private schools.

As for the Cesafi (Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc.) schools, they will compete under the names of their schools, he said.

When asked about the arrangements for the upcoming activities at NCSC, Ramirez said the participants are scheduled to stay at the venue for three days and two nights.

However, he emphasized that the athletes have the option to decide whether they will avail of the accommodations or not.

Regarding transportation, he said they are coordinating with the Cebu City Government to use its green buses to ferry the athletes from Cebu City to Naga City.

To support the athletes, Nimfa Bongo, DepEd division school superintendent, said the Cebu City Government had hired coaches for the different sports, adding that right after the City Olympics these coaches will train the qualified athletes for the Palarong Pambansa.

Cebu City is renovating the CCSC for the city’s hosting of the Palarong Pambansa in July.


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