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Olympic Mascots to Be Unveiled

The official Olympic mascots will be unveiled on November 11 at an evening show to mark the 1,000-day countdown to the event, its organizers told a press conference at the Beijing Olympic Media Center yesterday.

"We will launch our mascots and organize a series of commemorative events to remind the public that the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games are coming very soon," said Jiang Xiaoyu, executive vice-president of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad (BOCOG).

"Through these events we will create a warmer and more exciting atmosphere, attract more people's attention to the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, and inspire them to more actively support Beijing's Olympic preparations," Jiang said.

The first part of the show will be themed "The Olympics are Coming towards Us" and will focus on the countdown to the Games, featuring performances that express Chinese people's enthusiastic expectations for the first Olympics to be held on China's soil. The second part, themed "Welcome to Beijing, " will unveil the mascots.

Central government and Beijing Municipality officials will take part, along with an audience of over 4,000, including International Olympic Committee officials, dignitaries and celebrities from all walks of life as well as the diplomatic community. A hundred children from China's western regions, as special guests of BOCOG, will also participate.

The events will be televised nationally by China Central Television (CCTV) and Beijing TV Station, and shown live on BOCOG's website.

From November 12, a series of cultural and sports events will be held across the capital to mark the countdown, including an event at the China Millennium Monument, where young Beijingers will present 2,008 "wishing stars" to officials and guests.

Beijing's co-host cities-Qingdao for sailing events and Hong Kong for equestrian events-as well as Sichuan and Qinghai provinces will also hold celebrations for the start of the countdown.

Olympic organizers also announced similar events marking the 500-day, one-year and 100-day countdowns.

An Overview of Mascot Hopefuls for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games

(China.org.cn November 4, 2005)

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