Putin support helps make Snow Leopard one of three mascots for Sochi Olympics
The Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee shows an illustration of a leopard which was announced to be one of the official mascot winners from a list of 10 short-listed entries.
Elspeth Lodge February 28, 2011 – 2:30 pm
A snow leopard, polar bear and hare were chosen as official mascots of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics on Saturday after an online vote open to Russians.
The snow leopard got a prominent boost when Russian Prime Minister Vladmir Putin said it was his preference. PM Putin is largely responsible for helping Sochi win the 2014 Winter Olympics bid, and he said early on Saturday, before the vote, that the leopard would be his “symbolic choice.”
Putin told students during his visit to Sochi: “(The snow) leopard is a strong, powerful, fast and beautiful animal. Leopard species had been destroyed around here but now they are being regenerated. If the Olympic project, at least in some way, should help the local environment, then it (picking a leopard) would be symbolic.”
Characters were shortlisted from over 24, 000 ideas submitted to the contest, but suspicions of foul play began to arise when a front runner in the competition, Russian Father Christmas Ded Moroz, was suddenly dropped from the running with no explanation.
A Russian political analyst Dmitry Oreshkin told Moscow Echo radio that the telephone system could have been rigged to engineer results, reports Breitbart. He also said the the leopard “somewhat implausibly” moved around in the ratings.
The snow leopard received 28% of the votes during a live broadcast on Russia’s main Channel One, followed by the polar bear in second place with 18% and the hare in third (16%).
“There are three mascots for the Olympic Winter Games, representing the three places on the Olympic podium,” Sochi 2014 chief Dmitry Chernyshenko said in a statement.
“All top-three characters will become the Olympic Winter Games mascots. The mascots are the choice of our whole country and will remain in the history of the Olympic movement.”
In addition, the Paralympic winter games mascots of 2014, the Ray of Light and the Snowflake, were chosen by Paralympic champions: the Paralympic Games champion and the general secretary of Russian Paralympic committee Mikhail Terentiev, the Paralympic champion and the Sochi 2014 Ambassador Olesya Vladykina, and Paralympic sportsmen Alexander Alyabyev, Vladimir Kiselyov, Margarita Koptilova, Xenia Ovsyannikova and Igor Pustovit, reports Sochi.ru.
“It’s the great honor for us to choose the symbol of the first Paralympic Games in history of our country. The Games will help to deliver positive changes to the lives of millions of people with a disability. It is very important to us that the millions of people living with a disability can find hope and understand that they can achieve incredible goals,” says Mikhail Terentiev. “The story of our fantastic mascots is that they arrived from a far-out planet and that they have infinite potential. It is a highly powerful and emotional image that, despite the difference in their make-up, the Ray of Light and the Snowflake are so united. I’m sure our two mascots will provide further inspiration to our future Paralympic champions and will help to develop Paralympic sports in Russia.”
The rights to the five 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic cartoon mascots have been passed to the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee. Those who appeared in the final of the contest have received certificates for attending the opening ceremonies of the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in 2014, reports Sochi.ru, and they have been awarded with commemorative medals and gifts from the Sochi 2014 Partner Megaphone.
“The finalists visited the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee offices before the vote and met with Dmitry Chernyshenko. The authors have received the encyclopedia “History of the Olympic Games: from Athens to China” containing a written message from the President of the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee,” reports Sochi.ru.
Who designed the mascots?
• Oleg Serdechniy, 1957, Sochi (the White bear),
• Vadim Pak, 1977, Nakhodka (the Leopard),
• Silviya Petrova, 1994, the Chuvash republic state, Yankovsky region, New Buyanovo village (the Hare)
• Natalia Balashova, 1963, Moscow (the Ray of Light),
• Anna Zhilinsky, 2002, St.-Petersburg (the Snowflake).
With files from Thomson Reuters
AFP / The Sochi 2014 Organizing Comittee / Getty Images
The Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee shows an illustration of a polar bear which was announced to be one of the official mascot winners from a list of 10 short-listed entries.
AFP Photo / The Sochi 2014 Organizing Comittee / Getty Images
The Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee shows an illustration of a rabbit which was announced to be one of the official mascot winners from a list of 10 short-listed entries.
Elspeth Lodge January 19, 2011 – 10:05 am
A driving instructor was ignoring the rules of the road when he crashed his tractor into a train on Tuesday in Northern Russia’s Murmansk Region, reports RIA Novosti.
According to Oktyabr rail officials, the instructor was ignoring safety rules when he had the collision:
“The driver ignored not only the automated stop signals on the crossing but also signals and warnings given by the rail staff,” the official statement said. “It is remarkable that the driver works as a teacher at a driving school.”
While no one on the train was hurt, the driver suffered injuries. This is the second collision at this particular railway crossing in two months.
- Reuters) – President Dmitry Medvedev called on Tuesday for increasing social support to help resolve what he called Russia’s “demographic crisis.”
Elspeth Lodge November 30, 2010 – 5:01 pm
On Tuesday, President Dmitry Medvedev said in his annual address to the nation that Russia’s stability depends on a population increase and the well-being of Russia’s youth demographic. He charted a road map to recovery, which involved encouraging Russians to build larger families and to strengthen family values.
President Medvedev even added incentives: Russian families with three or more children could benefit from an extra 3,000 rubles ($100) a month from the government and free land to build a home.
He spoke of ways to deal with Russia’s approximately 130,000 orphans, reported Business Insider.
“Guardianship must be directly focused on child placement in families and helping foster families,” Medvedev said. “There should be no un-adopted children in our country,” said Medvedev, reported RioNovosti.
In further attempt to protect Russia’s youth, he says all convicted child offenders must be banned from the Russian education sector and anyone caught abusing a child will face the harshest of consequences.
The countries economic future could be at stake, BBC Cites in a Jan., 2010 prediction. Low population predictions were a key factor in the analysis, which showed Russia’s economy progressing more slowly than China’s, Brazil’s and India’s over the next 20 years.
Russia suffers from the 178th lowest birthrate in the world.