Friday, June 10, 2022
When I was appointed to serve as the Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games 2022 (PMG 2022) chief executive officer in April 2021, I knew there would be a lot of work to prepare for the first-ever PMG 2022 event hosted by the Northern Marianas. Nevertheless, I was up for the challenge to the stage an amazing, exciting, and unforgettable experience on Rota, Tinian, and Saipan for all athletes, coaches, officials, and spectators.
As of today, June 10, we are seven days away from the PMG 2022’s opening ceremony. I have never felt so nervous and excited at the same time. The CNMI will welcome 177 teams from the 20 participating countries, who will compete in nine sporting events -- Athletics (Track and Field Events), Badminton, Baseball, Beach Volleyball, Golf, Tennis, Triathlon, Va’a (Outrigger Canoe), and Weightlifting. We look forward to putting on an remarkable event for our community and striving to make this the best PMG 2022 event in the history of the games.
An investment in the Marianas
By the start of the games, the Oleai Sports Complex (OSC) will be equipped with a new batting cage and pitching machine, track and field facilities, a baseball field, an air-conditioned gym, and more! We’ve made significant investments in each venue to support world-class competition. The best part is these facilities will be used by our local athletes well after the games. To ensure our spectators’ comfort, we rented over 100 tents to ensure that each event has ample shading. We will also install additional over 1,000 seat bleachers with canopies at the OSC.
Though I won’t be on Rota, I am personally excited about the triathlon. We’ve been meticulously working on our broadcast capabilities for the events. The committee invested in broadcasting equipment to bring the games into the homes and across the Pacific. The Northern Marianas College, the Public School System, and the Governor’s Office have been instrumental in helping us develop our communications plan, and we are ready to cover the games for the world to see.
We will have a dedicated PMG 2022 channel, courtesy of the KSPN Flame Tree TV, which will be broadcasting all PMG 2022 competition highlights throughout the week. In addition to having a channel, the KKMP Radio Station developed a KPMG radio station where they will cover the PMG 2022 live from the Multi-Purpose Center in Susupe. The Multi-Purpose Center will serve as the central media center where our media partners will be able to receive the results in real-time throughout the games. On Saipan, the Polynesian/Melanesian French community will play a key role in translating commentary into various languages for the visiting athletes.
A culturally rich experience
Although this is a sporting event, the PMG 2022 will be a culturally-rich event. We invite our residents to warmly welcome and engage with our brothers and sisters from throughout the Pacific. Come out to watch the competitions and cheer on the CNMI’s national team and the visiting teams. Let’s show our warm Håfa Adai and Tirow hospitality and keep everyone safe by practicing the three Ws – wear a mask, wash your hands, and watch your distance. To promote a safe event, we will have sanitizers at all the competition venues.
This event is our community’s labor of love. We’ve joined together to put on the most historic and marvelous event that the CNMI and the Pacific Islands will be able to enjoy. We are grateful to Governor Ralph DLG Torres and our government agencies who have championed the event’s success.
I want to personally thank the PMG 2022 Games and Oversight Committees, respective agencies, and the hundreds of people who are involved one way or another– the sponsors, volunteers, and all the hard playing athletes on the national teams– in making the PMG 2022 a big success! We could not have done it without all the unconditional support that we’ve received.
For more information about the opening ceremony, competition schedule, how you can enjoy the games on all three islands, or lend a hand as a volunteer, please visit the PMG 2022’s website at northernmarianas2022.com. Together, We Can!
For more information or to view the full list of MVP winners and Adopt-A-Median partners, visit the GCEA website at cnmieconomy.com. Engage with the Council on Facebook and Instagram (@cnmigov.economy) or contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Vicente “Ben” Babauta
Vicente “Ben” Babauta served as the assistant general manager of operations for the Duty-Free Shopping Saipan and brings 33 years of experience in business operations to his role as the Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games CEO of the Games Committee.