St. Maarten to host 2013 Kingdom Games

POSTED: 09/15/11 12:22 PM

Six options on table for upgrading Raoul Illidge Sports Complex

GREAT BAY, St. Maarten – Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport Rhoda Arrindell met the board of the foundation that manages the Raoul Illidge Sports Complex on Wednesday morning to examine at least six available options for the complex’s upgrading. The upgrades are important as the facility will be central to the country’s hosting of the 2013 Kingdom Games. That host country status should be confirmed by Friday at the end of a visit by the Steering Committee for the Kingdom Games.

It is not clear how the major overhaul will be financed as the minister, ministry and the foundation are still mulling their options.
“There are different private sector companies that are involved in the smaller upgrading. The bigger thing we’re now busy putting together, which is the plan for the complete overhaul of Raoul Illidge, we have at least six proposals from various persons and entities that have been submitted and the board is busy studying those proposals and we are going to prepare a plan for the total upgrading,” Arrindell said.

Upgrading Raoul Illidge will form part of the wider preparations for the games. The country’s selection has also provided a catalyst for the upgrades and preparing athletes.
“We have to begin preparing like yesterday for this important sporting event. We have to renovate, upgrade and modernize some of our sporting facilities, the main one being the Raul Illidge Sports Complex. We also need to prepare our athletes for the Games. As you are all aware of, it is my considered position that it is no longer acceptable to simply participate in sporting events just for the sake of participating. We have to adopt the mentality of winners and participate because we want to stand on the victory podium. That is the best way to represent St. Martin and fly our flag high,” Arrindell said at Wednesday’s Council of Ministers press briefing.
Part of the steering committees task during their visit is compiling the final list of sports that participants will compete in during the games.
“It is my view that the decision should be based on what the host of the Games can properly provide facilities for and offer each participant a fair and level playing field,” Arrindell said.

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