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All systems go for massive opening day

Fri 11 Mar 2011 In: Out Games News View at NDHA

Some of the many volunteers helping the Outgames run smoothly 4.30PM: As Wellington begins to turn a shade of pink, there's excitement from the AsiaPacific Outgames organising team that the event they have been busily planning for years is about to kick off. After winning the hosting rights in October 2008 the volunteer core crew has given up countless hours getting ready for the biggest gay sporting event the nation has ever seen. Co-chair David Hindley says there's a sense of unreality about the Outgames starting after working on the event for so long. “There is a buzz. Someone popped out to the airport the other day to see a new Air New Zealand plane and they said they saw these lesbian and gay couples flying into Wellington, and it was very exciting.” Everything is running smoothly ahead of a jam-packed opening day tomorrow, which includes Out In The Square, the opening ceremony, Queen of the Whole Universe and the not-to-be-missed Sweatbox opening party at the San Francisco Bath House. Hindley says the city is behind the games. “There's a fantastic goodwill all over the place, from our commercial suppliers and sponsors, the City Council is fantastic, and I think everybody realises that the thing to do is just show a lot of goodwill and relax and have a good time.” Outgames t-shirts, hats and bags are already selling like hotcakes – they can be picked up from the event hub at the Town Hall, where people are registering and grabbing information from a helpful team. Hindley says the volunteers at the hub at the Town Hall are awesome. “It makes all the difference for people to get a nice welcome.” He says the hub is a brilliant space, as it is on the ground floor of the Town Hall and opens onto Civic Square. “Having people just be able to bowl in off Civic Square is great.” Most of all Hindley just wants visitors to feel warmly welcomed to Wellington, saying “have a great time … it's going to be a fantastic week. We've got a tonne of exciting things on.” He advises people to grab a programme and an arts and culture flyer as there are “bucket loads of things on”, saying he has seen most of the art exhibitions already and they are amazing and well worth visiting. GayNZ.com Daily News staff - 11th March 2011

Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News staff

First published: Friday, 11th March 2011 - 4:09pm

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