FINA World Championship Opening Ceremonies


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The Welland International Flatwater Centre is excited to be hosting this prestigious world championship event as the highlight of its week-long Niagara Open Water Festival. Teams from over 30 countries will travelling to Niagara, and we look forward to celebrating them with an exciting show, produced by neXt Company Theatre.

Some of the highlights of the Opening Ceremonies will be:

  • Native American Indigenous drumming, dancing and blessing of the competition
  • A young and upcoming Niagara band, called The Bends providing the live music
  • Exciting young performers from Zacada Circus School
  • Niagara Cheerleaders, dancers and other entertainment

Date: Thursday, August 16
Start Time: 8:30 pm SHARP!
Suggested Audience Arrival Time: 8:00 pm
Athlete Arrival: 7:45 pm

Finish: 9:30 pm (approx.)
Location: Welland Merritt Park Amphitheatre, in downtown Welland  (click here for map)

More information about the event can be found at:





Sports ... Theatre ... Culture ... Mixing it up in Niagara!

In February, 2011, the executive of the Fédération internationale de natation (FINA) awarded the 1st FINA World Junior Open Water Swimming Championship to the Welland International Flatwater Course (WIFC) located in Welland.


From August 16-19, 2012, this prestigious international championship event will host nearly 200 swimmers from 40 countries, their coaching teams and families, and international delegates from FINA and the swim organizations of participating countries.


The World Junior Open Water Swimming Championship will be staged in tandem with the first Niagara Open Water Festival, which will be an annual event celebrating open water sports across a range of disciplines, along with the local culture and community of the community Niagara Region. The Niagara Open Water Festival is anticipated to bring an additional 400 – 1000 athletes and coaches who will participate in open water events hosted by their aquatic organizations in partnership with the World Junior Open Water Championship Host Organizing Committee (HOC).


What's neXt got to do with it?

The FINA organizing committe has asked neXt Company Theatre to collaborate on the Opening Ceremonies on Thursday, August 16 and the Closing Ceremonies on Sunday, August 19.


neXt Company Theatre will, in turn, collaborate with artists and musicians from the region to showcase the talent and beauty of the Niagara Region.


The Opening Ceremonies took place on the floating Illuminaqua stage on the canal located in the Welland Merritt Park in downtown Welland. International athletes, coaches and guests will gather alongside Niagarans for this unique opportunity to mix sports, theatre and culture in the Niagara Region.



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Brock Congress 2014

  • "I was extremely impressed with the professionalism and quality of the Lundy's Lane performance – something we weren’t expecting. Everything was orchestrated perfectly, down the shuttles that whisked everyone away at the end of the evening. It was an excellent way to generate interest in the history of the area among kids and adults alike. We thoroughly enjoyed it and cannot thank you enough!"
    - L. Harris, Niagara Falls Tourism

neXt Company Theatre is grateful for support from:

Twenty Valley Tourism, Niagara Falls

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