The PyeongChang Paralympics will take place in South Korea in March, kicking off with an opening ceremony of their own on Friday, March 9 and running through Sunday, March 18 of this year, making use of many of the same facilities and mountain setups that have hosted the Olympics as well. This is the first time in 30 years that the Paralympics have taken place in South Korea, following Seoul’s hosting back in 1988. Like in the Olympics, the opening and closing ceremonies and snow sports will happen in PyeongChang, alpine skiing will go on in Jeongseon, and all ice sports head to the coastal city of Gangneung.
What is the official mascot of the 2018 Paralympics?
Paralympians will be represented by Bandabi, an Asiatic black bear, who is the official mascot of the 2018 Winter Paralympics. Mascots are a traditional part of all Olympic Games: this year’s mascot for the February events in PyeongChang is Soohorang the white tiger. Asian black bears are native to parts of the Himalayas, China, Korea, Russia, Japan and India, and are classified as a vulnerable species. They have distinctive markings: all black fur with a white patch on the chest and chin. Bandabi is “symbolic of strong will and courage,” according to the Paralympic site, with his name combining Korean-language references to the white markings on his chest and to the celebration of the Games themselves.