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22 Jul 2011
London 2012 , IOC News , London 2012 News

London 2012 Open Weekend kicks off one-year-to-go celebrations

This weekend will see thousands of people across the UK take part in the London 2012 Open Weekend, in the lead-up to the celebrations marking one year to go until the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

The annual Open Weekend has been held each year since 2008 as part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, which has given everyone in the UK the chance to be part of London 2012 through a series of cultural events designed to inspire creativity across all forms of culture.

This year’s Open Weekend, from 22 to 24 July, is set to be the biggest and best yet, with over 1,000 sporting and cultural events taking place across the country ahead of the one-year-to-go milestone on 27 July.

Sebastian Coe, Chairman of the London 2012 Organising Committee (LOCOG), said: “For our fourth year, Open Weekend is focused on celebrating the ‘One Year to Go’ countdown to the London 2012 Games and helping communities across the country experience the best of British sporting, artistic and cultural talents up close. I’d encourage people to get involved at a local event as part of this nationwide celebration; it will be an amazing event.”

Highlights of the Open Weekend include a floating cinema, which will navigate the Olympic Park waterways; an interactive treasure hunt through East London; youth theatre and dance performances; circus acts, children’s animation workshops and hands-on art activities.

London’s Trafalgar Square will be transformed for a screening of ‘The Itch of the Golden Nit’, an animated film conceived and drawn entirely by children, while Live Sites at 20 locations throughout the UK will also show the film on big screens, accompanied by a variety of interactive games.

The Open Weekend comes a year before the London 2012 Festival – the finale of the four-year Cultural Olympiad – which will bring together leading artists from all over the world from 21 June to 9 September 2012, giving everyone the opportunity to celebrate London 2012 through dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, film and digital innovation in an outstanding summer of arts and creativity in the UK.

Ruth Mackenzie, Director of the Cultural Olympiad and London 2012 Festival, said: “The weekend will give people a taste for 2012, when the London 2012 Festival and the Olympic and Paralympic Games will bring a summer of cultural and sporting celebration across the nation.”

Full listings for the Open Weekend can be found at

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