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A day of Ukraine at the Olympic Games


Gan bei in Chinese is close in meaning to the Ukrainian budmo, or cheers! in English. During the Day of Ukraine which was held during the Olympic Games in Beijing, China, last August, this exclamation was heard many times.


Olympic games should be outside politics and should become a symbol of peace, friendship and healthy spirit, proposed the French educator and thinker Pierre de Coubertin who initiated the modern Olympic games at the end of the nineteenth century. Since then these principles have remained unchanged but the scale of the games has changed greatly. The summer Olympic Games which were held in Beijing, China, in August 2008 were to date the biggest as far as the number of participants is concerned, and the most glamorous from the point of view of shows that opened and closed the games. The organization of the games was highly praised too.

Sport fans came to Beijing from many countries of the world and at the stadiums they provided moral support and cheered the athletes from their respective countries participating in the games. At night, parties were organized to celebrate victories. The sumptuous palace Chateau Lafitte, an exact replica of the Palace of Fontainebleau (royal palace situated southeast of Paris) which is located in the Olympiad Friends House Complex in a suburb of Beijing, was the venue of meetings and parties of the Ukrainian and Russian sport fans who came to Beijing to support their Olympic teams.

On the Day of Ukraine at the Olympic Games, the palace shook with Ukrainian rock music provided by Ruslana. But it was not only rock music that played that day  Ukrainian folk songs were sung, Ukrainian horilka (vodka) was served with all kinds of dainties. The guests, among whom were such celebrities as the boxer Vitaliy Klychko, joined in singing. They also danced all kinds of dances, including Wild Dances of Ruslana. Between the dancing and singing, Ukrainian cheers budmo and Russian cheers pey do dna and Chinese cheers gan bei were repeatedly heard, as well as best wishes to the Ukrainian Olympic.


The initiative to hold the Day of Ukraine at the

Olympics came from the Ukrainian company

Nemiroff. At a press conference, Oleksandr Glus,

Head of the Board of Directors of Nemiroff Holding,

said, Our company fully shares the philosophy of

the international Olympic movement which is

based on the striving to win, on perseverance, on

fair competition. We also support the main idea

of this movement  only in the unity of culture,

education, and sports it is possible to develop a

harmonious personality. Olympic games unite

people all around the world. That is why the

international brand Nemiroff is a partner of the

House of Friends of the Olympiad in Beijing.



Some time before the party at the Palace Chateau

Lafitte began, soccer games for the House of

Friends of the Olympiad Cup were played and the

winners were the team of Russias Embassy in

China. Nemiroff presented the winners with

boxing gloves autographed by Klychko and Dzyu.


The organizers of the Day of Ukraine at the Olympics

also organized a show, Great China World, which was

held the day before; the show presented spectacular

aspects of Chinese culture.


The Russian pop star Filip Kirkorov sings in duet with

the Ukrainian pop star Taisiya Povaliy; Kirkorov had

his own one-man show later on.


Chinese martial arts enthusiasts with a huge toy red

pepper; real bitter red peppers are put into some of

the Nemiroff vodka brands.



Vitaliy Klychko came to Beijing with three pounds of

the best Ukrainian salo (hard pork fat, Ukrainian

staple food) hidden in his suitcase, and he shared

the salo with friends at the House of Friends of the

Olympiad. Oleksandr Glus, Head of the Board of

Directors of Nemiroff Holding, coordinates the

salo cutting process.


Kostya Dzyu and Vitaliy Klychko, world champions,

were among the supporters of the Ukrainian Olympic

team. Kostya Dzyu spent some time skating as part

of his training for taking part in the Ice Age Show,

and Vitaliy Klychko had a workout at the Great Wall

of China, as part of his training for his forthcoming

bout with Samuel Peter.


Marysya Horobets, a beautiful MC, was the star

of the day.


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