In unprecedented scenes for FIPJP World Championships (according to old hands who've been to many) Day One ended with all participant nations marching behind their national flags down the street from the site of the competition to a massive tent near the town hall where what seemed like half of Canada was lining the streets and filling the tent to greet us all. They seemed genuinely grateful to see us all. After the requisite speeches including a number by the mayor of Debiens, who is obviously the force behind this massive logistical exercise, everyone was treated to a fantastic concert by a troupe of performers singing songs form Quebec over the past three decades.
Some thoughts from Andre Deramond:
"The evening concluded with the opening ceremony it was quite a show, I have attended around 8 world championships and have never witnesses such a joyful opening ceremony. 1993 Thailand is the only world championships which might match it.
The locals from Desbiens and all surrounding towns and village from around the Lake St Jean, we walked/marched through the town with people cheering, waiving flags from all countries, we walked ½ km through the town and both sides of the street were full of locals, we were greeted by the local music band (Fanfare).
We entered a large Marquis and were again greeted by a large enthusiastic crowd, we were taken to our allocated sitting area and listened to opening speeches from all relevant personalities.
At the completion of the opening ceremony we had a musical show from “Celine Dion a la Bolduc”, we were presented with a variety of songs from Quebec from the last 25 years by a troupe of 20 artists, the local crowd singing along creating an exciting and memorable evening
I have never seen so many volunteers for an event - 200 to 300 people involved from car park to the restaurant and transport.
We can ask a lot and they always try their best or find someone else able to assist you
Desbiens is a small locality with around 1000 people it did look like today the town had double in population.
The event is followed by a large crowd and they are very vocal supporting their national team
Language can be testing sometimes but overall one my best experience in the time that I have been representing PFA at overseas events"