BUDAPEST, Hungary – This morning, the city of Budapest officially launched its bid to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2024. The timing is appropriate, as this week Hungary also celebrates its part in the founding of the modern Olympics and the first gold medal ever won for the country in the 1896 Olympic Games.
A program of coordinated citywide activities commenced this morning at the Freedom Statue, a national symbol of liberty and peace that commands spectacular views over the Citadella. The day’s events began with short addresses from key figures in Budapest’s bid committee and sport community. The speaker line-up demonstrated strong support for the bid from the city of Budapest and the Hungarian government, and underlined Budapest’s capability as a seasoned host of numerous European and World Championship sport events, including the FINA World Championships and the European Youth Olympic Festival. Speakers also invoked the special relationship that Hungarians have with sport.
After the panel discussion, the much-anticipated logo of the bid was unveiled on a 300 square metre flag draped from the iconic Chain Bridge. The logo represents the vitality of Budapest’s bid: at its centre is the Freedom Statue, with the fresh waters of the Danube at its feet, surrounded by the celebratory warmth and openness of the Hungarian personality.
The celebrations will continue for the rest of the day in central public meeting places and leisure locations across the city. Demonstrations in seven sports will take place, followed by open sessions, allowing the people of Budapest the chance to join in a favourite sport, or try their hand at a new one, alongside national Olympic and Paralympic athletes. The planned sport activities include basketball, fencing, table tennis, water polo, beach volleyball, gymnastics and weightlifting.
The launch day activities will conclude with a free festival of live music in Erzsébet Square in the city centre, headlined by popular Budapest bands.
The bid’s official online presence and social media channels will also be launched later today.
The mayor of Budapest, István Tarlós
Zsolt Borkai, President of the Hungarian Olympic Committee
Balázs Fürjes, Chairman of the Budapest 2024 Bid Committee
Attila Szalay-Berzeviczy, President of the Movement to Bring the Olympics to Budapest
Ágnes Kovács, Olympic champion and Chair of the National Athletes’ Committee
Amarilla Veres, Paralympic champion
Pál Szekeres, Olympic and Paralympic champion