Sydney will host the 2018 Invictus Games for injured, wounded and sick armed forces veterans, Prince Harry has announced.
The prince confirmed the chosen city in a video message, which ended with the backing of pop star Kylie Minogue.
The Invictus Games are a Paralympic-style multi-sport event ranging from archery and wheelchair rugby to road cycling and swimming.
The event began in London in 2014 and visited Orlando, Florida, in May ahead of Toronto in 2017.
Image source Wikimedia
In the video message, Prince Harry said: “We have raised the bar higher with each successive games. I am happy to say the Invictus Games journey won’t end there.”
The prince said the competition had “shown us what can be achieved when wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women rediscover their fighting spirit through sport”.
He has been heavily involved in the organization of the event, after attending the Warrior Games, a similar gathering held in the US.
Prince Harry himself served 10 years in the Armed Forces and saw action in Afghanistan twice.
The video message, filmed at the Tourism Australia offices in Australia House, London, shows Prince Harry’s mobile phone ringing to the sound of the Kylie Minogue hit I Should Be So Lucky.
Prince Harry, surrounded by members of the Australian military, announces to cheers that the caller is Kylie.
He says: “Hi Kylie, good timing, the 2018 Invictus Games is coming to Sydney, can I guarantee the Aussies are going to bring it?”
In her own video message in reply, Kylie Minogue says: “Hey Prince Harry, listen – we’re stoked the Invictus Games is coming to Sydney, but you don’t need to tell the Aussies to bring it – it’s guaranteed, no worries.”
Prince Harry, who is patron of the Invictus Games Foundation which oversees the delivery of the tournament, said Sydney was chosen because it is an iconic location with a proud military heritage and a population that is “absolutely sports mad”.
The 2018 Invictus Games are set to take place in New South Wales from October18-29.
Thousands of people are attending Sydney’s traditional pyrotechnic as Australia welcomes 2014.
Celebrations around the world are under way to mark the start of 2014
Earlier, Auckland in New Zealand was one of the first cities to ring in the New Year, at 11:00 GMT on Tuesday.
In Japan, Shinto priests gathered at shrines to prepare to usher in the New Year.
Other cities globally are also planning big displays, with Dubai attempting a world record for the largest display.
Thousands of people are attending Sydney’s traditional pyrotechnic as Australia welcomes 2014
The display will be streamed live on the internet and organizers say it will stretch over 30 miles of seafront, with the highest fireworks reaching more than one kilometer in height.
While celebrations are expected in major Chinese cities, the city of Wuhan called off its display in order to avoid worsening the city’s smog problem.
Later on, festivities will be held in European cities including Moscow, Paris and London.
Cape Town in South Africa is planning a free concert with lasers, fireworks and a special 3D tribute to former President Nelson Mandela, who died on December 5.
New York will mark the New Year with the traditional New Year’s Eve countdown and ball drop over Times Square, while Rio de Janeiro is once again expecting more than two million people to pack its Copacabana beach.
Sydney is experiencing its hottest day on record, with temperatures reaching nearly 115 F (46 C).
A temperature of 114.4 F (45.8 C) was recorded at Observatory Hill in the Australian city at 14:55 local time.
Some areas in the wider Sydney region were even hotter, with the town of Penrith, to the west, registering a temperature of 115.7 F (46.5 C).
Firefighters are still battling dozens of wildfires sparked by the intense heat in New South Wales and Victoria.
The small town of Licola in eastern Victoria is reported to have been cut off by a 44,500-hectare fire, as its sole access road is blocked.
Officials said dozens of people had been evacuated but 10 locals were still there.
Rob Gilder, a sheep farmer, said he and two employees had found themselves trapped on their farm and were “in grave danger”.
He told the Herald Sun they were taking steps to protect their house and farm equipment, but that he was concerned for his livestock, and that the situation could worsen.
“I am very worried. But I am hopeful that one of those helicopters will come and get us but I think the smoke might beat them.”
Sydney is experiencing its hottest day on record, with temperatures reaching nearly 115 F
Australia faces wildfires each year as temperatures climb. In February 2009, on what has come to be known as Black Saturday, 173 people were killed in fires in the state of Victoria.
On Friday, Prime Minister Julia Gillard attended a memorial service for fires in 2003 in the capital, Canberra, which killed four people and destroyed thousands of homes.
She reminded Australians to “take the appropriate precautions to stay safe and monitor information from local emergency services as they work to protect lives and property”, the AFP news agency reports.
The previous recorded high in Sydney was in January 1939, when the thermometer topped 113.5 F (45.3 C) at Observatory Hill.
The Bureau of Meteorology said in a statement that Friday’s record-setting temperatures “were not limited to Sydney, with records being set along the coast from Bega (44.6 °C) to Williamtown (44.8 °C)”.
“The highest temperature recorded in the Greater Sydney Area was 46.5 °C at Penrith, where observations started in 1995.”
Officials in Sydney have warned people to be ready for the heat, take care, avoid strenuous activity and stay out of the sun.
The heat has damaged wiring to urban railway lines, bringing delays to much of the network – CityRail have warned passengers to carry water with them.
The emergency services has received dozens of calls from people seeking help for heat-related health issues, including dizziness, fainting and vomiting, ABC News reports.
Chief Superintendent Ian Johns said elderly and ill people tended to suffer the most, but warned that “people underestimate the heat and overestimate their ability and that would be particularly so for younger, fitter Australians”.
The heatwave across Australia in recent weeks has been so intense that the Bureau of Meteorology has had to add a new shade to its color-coded temperature chart, so the scale now reaches above 122 F (50 C).
However, meteorologists have forecast a dramatic change in weather overnight in Sydney, with thunder storms expected to bring a rapid drop in temperatures.
Australian department store Myer hosted Big is Beautiful fashion launch during Sydney’s Fashion Festival 2011 on Tuesday, hiring plus-size girls to model outfits by various labels.[googlead tip=”vertical_mediu” aliniat=”dreapta”]
Sydney Fashion Festival, known as Mercedes-Benz Sydney Fashion Festival (MBFF Sydney), is Sydney’s premier fashion and lifestyle event and is a schedule of fashion events showcasing the contemporary Spring Summer Collections of Australia’s leading designer brands and retailers as these collections land in store.
Sydney’s Fashion Festival 2011 official schedule includes the collection shows and Festival Hub activities, which all take place at the Sydney Town Hall from August 23 to August 27.
Myer’s “Big is Beautiful” show during Sydney’s Fashion Festival 2011 was presented on Tuesday and used plus-size girls to model outfits by various labels, as the Australian department store claimed in a statement:
“Myer is proud to support Mercedes Benz Fashion Festival, Sydney and invites you to join us for our Big Is Beautiful Fashion Launch. The show will feature the very latest trends in plus size fashion for sizes 16 to 24. It’s fashion designed for real women with a fuller figure. For Spring Summer 2011 Myer is excited to be re-launching Big Is Beautiful and introducing Leona + by Leona Edmiston and both brands will feature in the show. This is an event not to be missed!”
Australian department store Myer hosted Big is Beautiful fashion launch during Sydney's Fashion Festival 2011
Robyn Lawley – the first ever plus-size model to feature in Vogue Australia – opened the Meyr’s show at Sydney Fashion Festival 2011 in a stunning black assymetric dress.
But while some girls looked healthy modelling sizes 16 to 24, others appeared somewhat overweight.
Some of the media reports claimed that Myer made a big mistake by adopting the slogan “Big is Beautiful” which is encouraging women to remain unhealthy. This could be classed as almost as harmful as promoting the controversial ‘size zero.’
The Myer’s fashion launch at Sydney Fashion Festival has sparked an online debate as The Australian journalist Damian Woolbough branded the choice of models “irresponsible.”
Robyn Lawley (first in left) the first ever plus-size model to feature in Vogue Australia opened the Myer’s show at Sydney Fashion Festival in a stunning black assymetric dress
[googlead tip=”patrat_mare”]The journalist wrote:
“There is a place for women of all sizes in the fashion media, as seen by the positive response to a plus-size shoot with Lawley in this month’s Vogue Australia, but obese models send just as irresponsible a message about the need for healthy eating and exercise as models with protruding clavicles and ribcages.”
However, the journalist’s post received a series of comments from readers defending Myer’s move.
Tam Fry, from the National Obesity Forum, warned the dangers of seeing skinny models on the runway far outweigh the message that plus-sized girls send, saying:
“Is it ok to be overweight? No.
But if you are big and big boned, people come in all shapes and sizes, it would be monstrously wrong to say the models are just overweight.
If they are running a show which has big girls modelling for big girls, then that would be totally appropriate.
Sending skinny girls down the runway does more damage than you might expect this show to be doing.
If the show Big is Beautiful is for ladies that are size 18 because that is their natural size then I see no problem.”
On the other hand, it seems not everyone bought the idea that big is beautiful.[googlead tip=”lista_medie” aliniat=”stanga”]
Only 64 tickets have been sold for Myer’s show, out of the 500 available.
Edwina McCann, Harper’s Bazaar editor told the Sydney Morning Herald:
“I don’t think the consumer is as obsessed with plus-size as the media is.
I think the consumer is quite happy to accept the fact that a model, like an Olympic swimmer, is usually an exceptional beauty and doesn’t look like the rest of us.”