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Dec. 7, 2000

VICTORIA A record twelve communities sent in 23 separate bids to host the BC Summer and Winter Games in 2004 and 2006.

The twelve communities bidding are: Abbotsford, Cranbrook, Greater Vernon, Greater Trail, Kamloops, Kimberley, Vancouver North Shore, Penticton, Port Alberni, Prince George, Surrey and Langley. In some cases, communities bid on up to four separate Games simultaneously. Previously, no more than eight communities have participated in the bidding process.

The recommendations about which communities could host the 2004 BC Winter Games, 2004 BC Summer Games, 2006 BC Winter Games, and 2006 BC Summer Games will be forwarded to Gerard Janssen, minister of small business tourism and culture, in February.

"We are grateful to each of these communities for their endorsement of the BC Games. They know the Games are a valuable incentive for young people to pursue sport, a celebration of their community, and an event that makes economic sense for the host," said Janssen, who is also minister responsible for sport.

John Furlong, co-chair of the BC Games Society, thanked the bidding cities. "The number of bids indicates the commitment throughout the province to our best under-18 athletes. They are reminding us how good it is for their communities to host these Games which are so much fun for their young people, and the stepping stone to provincial teams and perhaps the Olympics."

"Never have we seen such an effort from communities to present such excellent facilities for the Games," said Kelly Mann, BC Games Society president and CEO. "Since the last bids, communities have been investing in sport facilities and want to showcase them at the Games. Our provincial sport organisation partners will be very happy to see the quality of facilities the potential hosts have offered the Games."

Bids are invited every four years in advance of the available Games. Bidding communities must submit a list of the proposed facilities, as well as resolutions from the local school board (the athletes stay in schools, and many sports take place in schools), the municipal councils involved, and other stakeholders in the community.

The selection process evaluates the facilities available for the sports, and the community capacity to host a major event. The rating is compiled by the BC Games Society, which makes a recommendation to the Ministry of Small Business Tourism and Culture, the main financial contributor to the games.

Editors Note: A list of past hosts of all BC Games can be obtained from the BC Games Society.

Lister Farrar, BC Games Society (250)356-3012

2000 BC Games Society