The municipality, centred around Drachten, is a European City of Sport for 2020
Translated by Thomas Ansell
Thursday evening will see Drachten kick off its year as European City of Sport, reports the Omrop Fryslân. “It is a possibility that gives us a year to see what we can offer in the field of sport and movement”, said Kim Assen of Sportbedrijf Drachten, who are putting together the programme.
“There are more activities, more events. And for us, it’s an opportunity to create more thinking around sport and movement. We want to bring about as many events as possible this year, and hopefully in the coming years we will profit from the title. We hope to create a richer sporting climate for all residents”, Assen said.
One of the events in Drachten is the first stage of the Healthy Ageing Tour, a cycling tour for women. “The first stage will begin and end in Drachten. We’re hoping that lots of people, young and old, will come to watch. We’ve also managed to bring the European Championships of dodgeball to Drachten. And we expect that sports societies will also do things within the year. One of these is that the squash centre is organising a clinic where young players can come and learn from professionals”, added Assen.
Today is the official kick-off, and (amongst others) SC Cambuur manager Henk de Jong, who is from Drachten, will be attending the event. Assen: “He is an ambassafor for the City of Sport, and has his heart in sports too.”
Smallingerland is not the only European City of Sport: 16 other European cities have taken the title for this year, and Malaga in Spain has been named as ‘Capital of Sport’.