7 January 2017
Bercy Village Handball 2017, which is intended to be the festive meeting point of handball fans during all the World Championship, was inaugurated on a Friday evening full of suprises…
Throughout the month of January, handball will be honoured in the area of Cour Saint-Emilion, just a 10 minutes walk away from AccorHotels Arena. Bercy Vilage Handball 2017 was inaugurated there on Friday night, in a shared good mood.
“Fans will want to get together before, after, and maybe even during the games. This village is the ideal place for it, I’m sure the fans will live great moments there”, said Joël Delplanque, President of the France Handball 2017 Organizing Committee, during his opening speech.
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“It’s a true first, added Jean-François Martins, who is assistant to the Mayor of Paris, in charge of sports. The idea was to show the passion and the strength of the French fans, but also offer to the other nations’ supporters a place where to party around handball. We really hope that Bercy Village Handball 2017 will be the beating heart of the World Championship during three weeks.”
It surely presents some assets to achieve this goal. The shopkeepers and the residents of Bercy Village neighbourhood worked together in order to make it a place for handball celebration. “I would like to thank the Organizing Committee, which allowed the residents and the economic actors of the neighbourhood to take part in this celebration around the World Championship”, underlined Catherine Baratti-Elbaz, Mayor of Paris’ 12th district, during the opening ceremony.
Many activities to enjoy
These speeches were followed by a little walk in Bercy Village to see the different animations offered all over the place. “any activities are planned during the coming three weeks, some permanent ones, and some more unexpected ones”, explains Edouard Donnelly, Director General of the Organizing Committee.
Among the permanent ones can be found “Phenomenal Energy”, exhibition of the works of young photographer Pierre-Alexis Mulier around handball and the city of Paris, but also a street art mural celebrating handball, painted live this friday evening.
As for the “more unexpected” activities, this inauguration night also set the tone, with a street performance of the Compagnie Progeniture, a group of local artists, and the a suprise appearance of FEDER, musical ambassador of the World Championship, at the Frog pub, where the evening ended with the friendly match France – Slovenia on the screens.
“Much more than a fan zone”
The bars and restaurants of Bercy Village will have a part to play too in this celebration of the 2017 World Championship. “The bars and pubs of the area will be decked out in the colours of the different national teams, announced Edouard Donnelly. The French team supporters will settle at the Frog. It’s much more than a fan zone, it’s a real village for all handball fans. We hope a lot of them will come here.”
After this fine opening night, Bercy Village Handball 2017 is now ready to welcome the handball enthusiasts from around the world. “Our goal is to get together all the handball fans, both French and foreigners, to get them together, and to welcome them to celebrate this World Championship all together, to the delight of all”, sums up Edouard Donnelly.
Crédit Photo : Julian Schlosser/DPPI