The 2010 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Swimming World Championships started with a colourful Opening Ceremony last night in Eindhoven, the Netherlands.
Entertainers for the big event included singer Nici Apfel and piano player Sven Jansen, who both were born blind. The Red Lobster Divers, which is a foundation for divers with a disability, were showing off their skills in the water as part of the programme. The senior synchronized duet of Elisabeth and Nicolien were performing in the water for the audience, both of whom have been part of the National Duet of the Netherlands since 2009. Junior synchronized duet Anouk and Margot were also performing.
Additionally, Uki, the mascot of the 2010 IPC Swimming World Championships, made a special appearance during the Opening Ceremony.
IPC President Sir Philip Craven gave and official speech during the ceremony, welcoming everyone who has come to watch Paralympic Sport on the World Championships level. President of the Local Organizing Committee Henny Jacobse also gave a speech.
Taking place from 15-21 August, more than 640 athletes from 53 different countries will be participating at the 2010 IPC Swimming World Championships in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Competing inside the Pieter van den Hoogenband Swimming Stadium for the gold, silver and bronze medal in their respective event, the number of participating athletes and countries will be one of the largest of any previous Swimming World Championships.