The 2008 Summer Paralympic Games
, the thirteenth
, took place in Beijing,
China from September 6 to September 17, 2008. As with the 2008 Summer Olympics, equestrian events
were held in Hong Kong and sailing events in Qingdao.
Over 4,200 athletes from 148 countries were expected to take part.
This was the largest ever number of nations at the Paralympics
(twelve more than in Athens), and several countries competed for
the first time. China fielded more athlete
than any other country. The slogan for
the 2008 Paralympics was the same as the 2008 Summer Olympics
, "One World, One
Dream" ( Pinyin Tóng yīge shìjìe tóng
, lit. "One World, One Dream"). China dominated
the medal count finishing with 89 gold medals and 211 total medals,
more than double the next-ranked NPC in both cases.
International Paralympic Committee (IPC) President Philip Craven
declared the Games "the greatest
Paralympic Games ever."
competition venues—seventeen in Beijing, one in Hong Kong, and one
in Qingdao—have been
selected for the 2008 Summer Paralympics.
- Beijing National Stadium (Birds Nest)
- Beijing National Aquatics
Center (Water Cube)
- Beijing National Indoor Stadium (Fan)
- Fencing Gymnasium of Olympic Green
- Olympic Green Archery Field
- Olympic Green Hockey Field
- Olympic Green Tennis Centre (Flowers)
- Peking University Gymnasium
- Beihang University Gymnasium
Agricultural University Gymnasium
- Beijing Science and Technology University
Institute of Technology Gymnasium
- Beijing Shooting Range Hall
- Laoshan Mountain Bike
- Workers Gymnasium
Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park
- Triathlon Venue
- Hong Kong Equestrian Venues
International Sailing Centre
The emblem, "Sky, Earth, and Human Beings" ( ), is a multicolored
Chinese character "之" ( ) stylized as an athletic figure in motion.
The red, blue, and green in the emblem represent sun, sky, and
The slogan is the same as the 2008
, "One World, One Dream".
Lele, mascot of the 2008 Summer
The mascot is a cartoon cow named Fu Niu
( ), roughly meaning "Lucky Ox 'Happy'".
The theme song, sung by Han Hong
known and popular Cantonese singer Andy Lau
is 'Flying with the Dream' .
relay of the 2008 Summer Paralympics started from
Tan (Temple of Heaven) on August 28.
then gathered before The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests
(祈年殿) and followed two routes (the "Route of Ancient China" and the
"Route of Modern China"). Both routes returned to Beijing on September
5, and the torch was flamed at the National
Stadium during the Opening Ceremony on September
The opening ceremony took place on September 6, 2008. The
pre-ceremony performance was a succession of various musical
performances, ranging from military music to folk music and a
performance of Ode to Joy
Following a countdown, a fireworks
signalled the beginning of the ceremony proper. The national flag of
was then raised, in accordance with usual protocol, and
the national anthem
performed. Performers wearing suits in bright colours paraded round
the stadium, as a welcoming ceremony preceding the athletes' entry.
As with the 2008
, the ceremony included a parade of nations,
with a flag bearer for each national team. Contrary to Olympic
tradition, the national team of Greece did not enter first; the
host country came last. As Chinese is written in characters and not
letters, the order of the teams' entry was determined by the number
of strokes in the first character of their respective countries'
names. Countries with the same number of strokes in the first
character are sorted by those of the next character. This made Guinea (幾內亞) the
first country to enter as it takes two strokes to write the first
character in the country's name (幾).
Following the athletes'
parade, a performance took place, divided into chapters and
sub-chapters entitled the "Journey of Space" and "Journey of Life"
performance entailed Yang Haitao
(楊海濤), a singer with a visual impairment, singing about dreams
while an acrobat in sunbird costume descended in simulated flight
from the air and "awakened the blind singer from his sleep". The
ceremony concludes with Hou Bin
, the high
jump gold medalist with one leg lighting the flame cauldron.
Summer Paralympics closing ceremony was held at the Beijing
It began at 8:00 pm China Standard Time
) on September 17, 2008.
Twenty sports are on the program:
Rowing made its first appearance in the Paralympics at these
The following National
sent delegations to compete. Macau and the
Islands are members of the International Paralympic
Committee, but not of the International Olympic
Committee; hence they participate in the Paralympic Games but
not in the Olympics.
The top ten ranked NPCs at these Games are listed below. (Host
nation is highlighted)
France, following the Games, Philippe
Juvin, national secretary of the governing Union for a Popular Movement,
accused national public television network France
Télévisions of having practiced "segregation" by providing live
coverage of the Beijing Olympics but only ten minute daily
summaries of events, outside prime time, for the Beijing
- Australia - Australian
Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) will present coverage of the Paralympic
Games, on ABC1 and ABC2.
- Brazil - SporTV2 and Terra Networks (online)
- Canada - Canadian
Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) is providing coverage on their
television and radio networks as well as extensive online coverage
at CBC Paralympics in English. TV coverage consists of
four digest shows. In French, Radio Canada (SRC), CBC's French
language arm, is providing coverage in the form of two digests on
television, with news articles on the web.
- China, People's Republic of - Chinese Central Television (CCTV)
provides coverage on CCTV-5 and CCTV-7.
- France - Eurosport
- Norway - NRK
- Sweden - Sveriges
- Turkey - TRT
- United States of America - Universal Sports, an online subsidiary of
NBC Universal, provides live streaming of selected Paralympic Games
events (free registration required).
- United Kingdom - BBC is providing extensive
coverage on television, and online.
France Télévisions replied that it would take
Juvin to court for slander
While the Games were not broadcast live in the United States,
will be broadcasting a documentary featuring
highlights and athlete profiles on November 9, 2008 at 2:30 pm/ET.
Olympic-themed cable channel, will show seven nights of Paralympic
event coverage beginning November 10, 2008 at 7 pm/ET. There will
be four hours of coverage each evening, including the opening and
- "More than 4,200 Athletes to Compete at Beijing
Paralympics", Xinhua, August 24, 2008
- "CPC announces Canadian team for the 2008 Beijing
Paralympic Games in China", Canadian Paralympic Committee, July
- Beijing Paralympics Emblem - The Official Website
of the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games
- Introduction to the Design of Fu Niu Lele - The
Official Website of the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games
- "Full Coverage: The Opening Ceremony of the Beijing
2008 Paralympic Games", Xinhua, September 6, 2008
- Peopledaily. " Peopledaily.com." China opens Beijing
Paralympic Games in celebration of life and humanity.
Retrieved on September 14, 2008.
- English People's Daily. " People's daily." 2008 Olympics Closing
Ceremony - Beijing. Retrieved on September 28, 2008.
- Official list, International Paralympic
- "Terra transmite ao vivo os Jogos
Paraolímpicos", Terra Networks, September 5, 2008 . Accessed
May 1, 2009. Archived June 1, 2009.
- "Paralympiques: L'UMP accuse", Journal du
dimanche, September 19, 2008
- "Jeux paralympiques: France TV va attaquer Juvin
(UMP) pour diffamation", Agence France-Presse, September 18,
- NBC to Air Stirring Documentary on 2008
Guide. November 7, 2008. Retrieved on November 7,