Sandton fan park full but thousands still stream in

2010-06-11 14:25

The Fifa fan park at Innesfree in Sandton was full to capacity,

Johannesburg Emergency Management Services said.

Spokesman Percy Morokane

advised people to go home or to other public viewing areas.

The park has a

capacity of 20 000.

People of all ages and races were sitting on the grass, watching

the opening ceremony on a big screen television.

The sound of vuvuzelas was so

loud it nearly drowned out the ceremony’s music. People waited in long queues

for refreshments, but the queues for the mobile toilets were the longest,

winding around the tents.

Australian journalist Carlos Monteiro said there was a “real

energy” in the crowd. “I was in Germany in 2006,” he said. “I feel the

atmosphere here is as good if not better.

The atmosphere in the fan parks is

probably just as great as in the stadiums. This really feels like South Africans

are coming out to party.”

Local car saleswoman Salome Matlhanye, 24, was ecstatic.

“I’m on cloud nine. Everybody has come together,” she said.

Chelsea

Middleton, a student at Monash University, described the atmosphere as

“awesome”.

She did not mind the sound of the vuvuzelas. “I love the sounds and

the colours. The people are amazing.”

Dhiresh Surajpal, a 27-year-old engineer, was watching the opening

ceremony at home with family.

“Wow, this is so amazing ... family, friends,

everyone is in the kitchen, not forgetting the braai,” he said. “African style

is the only way we can celebrate.

Africa is united like never before. Wow, what

a feeling.”


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