Beyond numbers: Why Konqer 2018 organizers conquered Palau
The success of an event is mostly associated with statistics but success could not only be accounted in terms of quantity but also of quality.
The Konqer Palau 2018 that was held last October 6 and 7 had, without a doubt, garnered a big number of participants and spectators. I can say this because since I arrived here in Palau, I had been active in participating and covering sports events and the number of participation and the kind of enthusiasm that was displayed by both spectators and participants for KONQER was clearly unmatched.
At the end of the event, the Konqer Sports together with the Palau Visitors Authority (PVA) had accounted a total of 220 participants for the K9 event dubbed as “The Chaos in Koror” and 41 participants for K8 event titled “Escape From Airai.” Over 900 spectators were also accounted to have gathered for the event. That in itself was already a success but I think the biggest accomplishment that Konqer had achieved this year in Palau far surpassed that. Organizers also deserve a pat on their backs for managing to bring everyone, regardless of race and ethnicity, together and work in one goal and that is to complete the course as a team.
It was a fun experience watching the participants made their way out of the obstacles with their pure kinesthetic intelligence but it was even more delightful to see very diverse teams worked together like they were brothers and sisters. It was, so to speak, a great means for cultural integration.
Prior to Konqer, it is irrefutable that participants live by their titles, ranks, and races but the moment they entered Konqer, you could see that none of these things were existent. Each has become dependent on each other’s strength and skills, making them equals.
The creative idea of introducing participants to a piece of history surrounding Yapese’ journey to obtain stone money from Palau was also commendable.
Aside from that, spectators were also there to cheer for the participants. I have never seen such display of excitement just to witness a sports event here in Palau. There were yelps and gasps as spectators watched the participants struggled or fell from a certain obstacle yet all of these pale in comparison to the loudness of the cheers that came afterwards as the participants determinedly stood to continue the race.
Harmony coupled with adventure, fun, and learning a bit of history through sports – that was how Konqer conquered Palau this year. Kudos to the hardworking teams who worked behind the scene just to make the event a success. (Rhealyn C. Pojas)