Revelry in the streets of Medellin is expected to rival the craziness of Barranquilla’s Carnival, when an estimated one million people attend the South American Games’ closing ceremony in the central Colombian city Tuesday. For the first time in the Games’ history, the closing ceremony will take place in the street and is open to the public.
Medellin’s San Juan Avenue will be closed from 4PM as organizers begin to set up for a spectacular street parade that will feature in the closing ceremony. The parade will feature some 500 performers, 95% of which are from Medellin, according to event organizers.
“It will be a spectacle in which the people can participate and dance and be a part of unforgettable images,” said event director Carlos Padrissa.
Colombia leads the medal count for these, the 9th South American Games. With 144 gold medals already won, Colombia has already secured its place as gold medal tally winner of the Games. Brazil currently comes in second, with 131 gold and with only seven more gold medal events remaining before the Games close, will not be able to catch up to Colombia’s gold medal tally.
These Games, Colombia has also achieved the title for the most medals ever won during the two week event, with a total of 372 medals won so far. Colombia beat Brazil’s record of 333 medals won during the 2002 Games.
Colombia leads the medal count with 144 gold, 124 silver and 104 bronze. Brazil follows with 351 gold, 118 silver and 102 bronze. Venezuela is coming in third with 89 gold, 79 silver and 96 bronze.
Argentina, medal tally winner of the 2006 Games held in Buenos Aires, is coming in fourth and Chile is fifth.
3,751 sportsmen and women from 15 countries have competed in this Medellin’s 2010 Games, which began La Paz, Bolivia in 1978. The next Games will be held in Santiago, Chile in 2014.
For the Games’ full medal tally to date, click here.