Organisers of the European Games in Kraków-Małopolska, Poland, have put preparations in place to share the vivid experiences of the multi-sport event across the country.

Fan zones in a total of 12 municipalities, including Czarny Dunajec, Trzebinia, Gorlice and Miechów have been established across the Małopolska region – also known as Lesser Poland – which is home to some nine million people.

“These will be the places where we will all come together through sport,” said Łukasz Smółka, Małopolska’s Deputy Marshal.

Kraków, Małopolska’s capital and largest city, will be the epicentre of the event, which will take place from June 21 to July 2 and attract some 7,000 athletes from 48 countries who will compete across 29 sports.

Fan and commerical zones

A fan zone will be situated at Galeria Krakowska on Jan Nowak Jezioranski Square in the centre of Kraków, featuring a number of activities and attractions, while so-called commercial zones will also be located at the Games’ various competition venues.

Each commercial zone will consist of a sports zone, giving visitors an opportunity to try out one of the sports on show, as well as an animation zone for children, with face painting and engaging contests also on offer. There will also be an information zone, a sponsorship zone for commercial partners to offer items and keepsakes to visitors, a merchandising zone, a ticketing zone and a catering zone for food and drink.

The fan zones, meanwhile, will be equipped with attractions that relate to the different sports, with children’s games and interactive elements also available, as well as a big screen presenting live coverage of the sport, and deckchairs for fans to watch the action.

The remote fan zones will be partly financed by the Małopolska regional authority.

“We’re just hoping the weather will be good so that we can spend this time together – not at home, with two or three people, but in a place where there will be more people,” said Stanisław Banach, Head of the Podegrodzie municipality.

Sharing experiences 

Those behind the delivery of the Games, who have indicated that they expect “hundreds of thousands” of attendees to visit the fan and commercial zones, have been keen to engage potential attendees at home and abroad.

Earlier this year, the Organising Committee for the Krakow-Małopolska 2023 European Games signed a partnership with LaLiga, which operates the top two divisions of Spanish football. Under the arrangement, LaLiga has been promoting the Games to its fans through a variety of channels.

Furthermore, some 20,000 display screens, advertising opportunities to attend the Games, have been installed across Poland since March. 

Meanwhile, accessibility has been prioritised with the ticketing arrangements. General admission ticket prices range from just PLN20 (£3.50/€4.25/$4.30) to PLN90 and the first 10,000 single tickets that went on sale in April had further discounts applied. Additionally, spectators will benefit from free admission to athletics, kickboxing, muaythai, padel and teqball competitions over the first three days.

“I know that Polish fans will come out in large numbers and, by offering free admission to various sports, these Games will truly be accessible to everyone,” European Olympic Committees Coordination Commission chair Hasan Arat said.

This year’s event will be the third edition of the European Games, which were first held in Baku, Azerbaijan in 2015 before taking place in Minsk, Belarus in 2019.

Image credit: Image courtesy of European Games Kraków-Małopolska 2023

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