National Aquatics Center shines for Int'l Olympic Day

The National Aquatics Center lights up on June 23, 2022, to celebrate this year's International Olympic Day. [Photo by Wu Xiaoshan/China.org.cn]

On June 23, Beijing's National Aquatics Center, a landmark and dual Olympic venue, turned on its iconic blue and gold lights to celebrate this year's International Olympic Day.

The move also aims to promote sports and healthy lifestyles across the city as the latest COVID-19 resurgence subsides. After temporary venue closure since May 1, the National Aquatics Center is ramping up preparations for business resumption to bring its sustainable dual-Olympic legacy to the public as soon as possible.

The center, which was converted from the "Water Cube" to the "Ice Cube," was one of the first Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic venues that opened to the public. It launched a public visit season in mid-April with authentic Winter Olympic experiences. Given the popularity back then, the center plans to resume its Beijing 2022 exhibitions as well as other programs that allow visitors to try their hand at curling on world-leading ice rinks and tour the dual-Olympic venue's equipment zones, changing rooms, podium areas, and media halls used during the Games.

Kids try their hand at curling at the Ice Cube in Beijing on April 16, 2022. [Photo by Wu Xiaoshan/China.org.cn]

The center also plans to recreate the Beijing 2022 curling venue in its newly-built Ice Sports Center to translate the sustainable Olympic concept into a reality and promote curling activities in the city after the pandemic ebbs. Various ice sports activities and related training programs will also be available here, with ice-making works to be launched by the end of June.

In addition, the center's main venue is currently undergoing maintenance. After removing the curling rinks, its water sports facilities like swimming pools and water parks will be restored and upgraded, providing a unique Chinese perspective on the operation of dual-Olympic venues following the Games.

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