Hungary and Vietnam, winners of World Ice Skating Day awards. 'X' / ISU

The second annual World Ice Skating Day awards were presented this week by the International Skating Union. The initiative was supported by 53 countries. Indonesia and Mexico won the Best Dance and Inaugural awards, alongside winners Hungary and Vietnam.

The International Skating Union (ISU) celebrated the second edition of World Ice Skating Day (WISD) on 3 December with numerous partners, national federations and skating clubs around the world. To motivate participants and countries, the ISU launched the "Best World Ice Skating Day" (Best WISD) competition.

From the entries received, Hungary and Vietnam were chosen as the winning nations. Indonesia also came out on top, winning the Best World Ice Skating Dance (#WISDance) award, and Mexico won the inaugural 'Spirit of WISD' award.

In the category of events with 500 or more participants, Hungary was named Best WISD 2023. Meanwhile, Vietnam won the award in the category of events with less than 500 participants. This follows awards for Indonesia and Mexico last year.

During the holidays and celebrations, the aim is to create a spirit of joy and togetherness among the participants. Children are the ones who have the most fun at the events. To enter the competition, the organiser of a WISD event submits a comprehensive report. This includes information on the characteristics and impact of social media and initiatives focused on children.

The winner of each category will receive the following cash prize;

-Best WISD (+500 participants) - USD 5,000.

-Best WISD (less than 500 participants) - USD 3,000.

-Best #WISDance Choreography - USD 3,000.

-Special prize - 'Spirit of WISD' - USD 3,000. 

ISU President Jae Youl Kim said: "Congratulations to Hungary, Vietnam, Indonesia and Mexico for winning the awards for the best WISD of 2023. The passion and imagination of these countries, as well as the other participants, is an inspiration to us all. I thank everyone for their tireless efforts and innovative contributions to make WISD 2023 a memorable event. "

"We are very pleased to see the growing involvement of national associations and clubs around the world. Let's continue this energy in future editions of WISD. Let's celebrate this great festival with the whole family and stay true to our mission of bringing the joy of skating to future generations," the Asian added.

Hungary, through its national federation (Hungarian National Skating Federation - HNSF), organised WISD in Budapest at the historic 'City Park Ice Rink'. With around 2,000 participants, this is the largest outdoor ice rink in Europe.

Lajos Kosa, President of the HNSF, Hungary, said, "Having a charming 150-year-old historic and picturesque City Park Ice Rink inevitably obliges us to host a celebratory event such as World Ice Skating Day."

Vietnam, through the Skating Federation of Vietnam (SFV), emerged as the second winner of the Best WISD Awards 2023 in the second category, which recognises events with less than 500 participants.

"The Skating Federation of Vietnam is honoured and excited to be chosen as the 2nd winner of the Best WISD Awards 2023. It was a great team effort that made this celebration a success," said Dr. Dang Ha Viet, President of the SFV.

Indonesia (Federasi Ice Skating Indonesia 'FISI') won the Best #WISDance 2023 choreography award. The #WISDance signature choreography was originally created by last year's Best #WISDance winners, the Ice Academy of Montreal. It served as a unifying force, bringing together skaters from all participating countries.

"We had 11 cities - 14 ice rinks and 3800 participants in Indonesia this year. We will do our best to introduce winter activities as a 'national sport' in our country. Suzan Herawaty, President of FISI, said proudly, "If all rinks, coaches, rink managers, skaters and parents come together as one, we can reach great heights

A new award category was introduced this year, the 'Spirit of WISD' award, which recognises those who have gone out of their way to motivate and inspire the entire nation to join the WISD movement.

"It is an honour to be the first winners of the Spirit of WISD award! We have tried," said Mrs Ana Luisa Aguillar, President of the Mexican Skating Federation, "to spread the joy of skating throughout our country in the most Mexican way possible. On 1 December 2024 the next World Ice Skating Day will be celebrated.