CVIRAA 2024 opens

CVIRAA. John Lexter Conde, captain of the Don Bosco TC Football Team, champions of the Palarong Pambansa 2023, passed the torch to Cebu City Councilor Dondon Hontiveros, who then handed it to Mayor Michael Rama to light up the the urn that marks the opening of the Central Visayas Regional Athletic Association (CVIRAA) on Saturday night, May 4, 2024.
CVIRAA. John Lexter Conde, captain of the Don Bosco TC Football Team, champions of the Palarong Pambansa 2023, passed the torch to Cebu City Councilor Dondon Hontiveros, who then handed it to Mayor Michael Rama to light up the the urn that marks the opening of the Central Visayas Regional Athletic Association (CVIRAA) on Saturday night, May 4, 2024.Shein Ivan Jiov G. Pacaña/Abellana National School Campus Journalist

THE Central Visayas Regional Athletics Association (CVIRAA) events are all about "sportsmanship and character building," Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said during the event's opening ceremony on Saturday, May 4, 2024.

"We are all here in the spirit of sportsmanship; it is not about winning or losing, but learning. We are now victors. We are now winners because we have converged here at the SRP," he said.

More than 10,000 athletes, coaches and officials gathered at the South Road Properties (SRP) on Saturday afternoon, as Cebu City played host to the games participated by schools divisions from Cebu and the islands of Negros Oriental, Siqujor and Bohol.

In his welcome speech, Rama also assured delegates that the city is prepared to address concerns that may arise during the entire duration of the CVIRAA events from May 4 to 9.

"I went to your billeting schools and I assure you, please get my telephone numbers...and during emergency give me a call," he addressed CVIRAA delegates.

The mayor then shared his 11-digit personal number, before humorously cautioning the delegates to contact him for emergencies and "not for money."

Rama also promoted Sinulog in front of all the delegates, who were then treated to various presentations, including the Sinulog Festival presentation by the 2024 winner of the Sinulog-based category grand champion Banawan Cultural Group of Barangay Guadalupe in Cebu City.

The opening ceremony was also live-streamed by the Cebu City Public Information Office (PIO).

The parade of athletes was scheduled at 5 p.m. followed by the actual opening ceremonies at 6 p.m.

The CVIRAA officials earlier tallied around 5,136 athletes, 1,042 coaches, 167 chaperones, 359 officials and 2,129 working committee members for this year's CVIRAA.

Cebu City Sports Commission Chairman John Pages, in a separate interview, said they rescheduled all late afternoon games on the opening day to ensure that all participants could attend the opening ceremony at the SRP.

Previously, it was announced that some athletes competing in gymnastics and athletics would not be present during the opening ceremony due to overlapping schedules with some of the planned games.

Pages said they started as early as 5:30 a.m. and managed to conduct competitions for five sports, including, including athletics, gymnastics, baseball, softball, and bocce events for the para-games. (WBS, KJF)

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