Special Olympics Hellas and Coca-Cola Celebrate the 2011 World Summer Games

May 12, 2011

The Coca Cola Company has been a proud sponsor of Special Olympics for forty-three years. Together we are able to share the power of sport with the world.

Members of the Special Olympics and Coca-Cola at the art auction

From left: Mr. Jeremy Brown, Operations Director of Coca-Cola in Greece, Cyprus and Malta; Ambassador Sophonia Makgetla of South Africa; Chairman of the Organizing Committee of Special Olympics ATHENS 2011, Ms. Joanna Despotopoulou; General Manager of Coca-Cola 3 Epsilon Vidakis Dimitris; President of ELPA Vassilis Despotopoulos; and Chargé d'Affaires Ambassador of South Africa, Johan Oberholzer.

Coca-Cola hosted a special art auction on May 9th to benefit the athletes of Special Olympics Hellas as they compete in the 2011 Special Olympics WOrld Summer Games in Athens.  The auction, which kicked off Coca Cola’s summer-long activation around the World Games throughout Greece, was titled “1+25” after the iconic brand’s 125th Anniversary.   The evening program featured Greek Olympic Gold Medalist and Special Olympics volunteer Voula Patoulidou, along with twenty five prominent Greek artists who have been inspired by the story of the beverage company and have used the distinctive bottle as a medium for their work. 


Artwork by George Vorres

Photo Vorres-artwork by George Vorres

True to the Coca-Cola heritage, the night was filled with art, happiness and refreshments served on draft from a replica of an 1886 soda fountain. Among those in attendance were Jeremy Brown, Operations Director of Coca-Cola in Greece, Cyprus and Malta; Vidakis Dimitris, General Manager of Coca-Cola 3 Epsilon; and Joanna Despotopoulou, President of the 2011 Special Olympics World Games Organizing Committee. Guests shared stories of Coke’s 43-year legacy with Special Olympics and celebrated the upcoming Special Olympics Summer World Games.


Artwork by Carolin Rovithi

Photo Rovithi-artwork by Caroline Rovithi

"We are happy to celebrate the 125th anniversary of our flagship brand Coca-Cola, by supporting the dreams, hopes and efforts of the athletes who will participate in the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Athens,” said Anastasia Sideri, Director Public Affairs & Communication, Coca-Cola South & Eastern Europe, “The auction is just one of the numerous events we have planned in order to support the Games Organizing Committee."

The auction, conducted by renowned auctioneer Petros Vergos, raised $124,703 for Special Olympics Hellas. As part of their activation, Coca-Cola will commemorate the Special Olympics World Games by providing packaging and advertising throughout Greece this summer.


Artwork by Patoulidou

Patoulidou-artwork by Olympic athlete Voula Patoulidou

Special Olympics thanks our founding partner, the Coca-Cola Company, for its tremendous support of the World Games. Forty-three years together and a million different moments of happiness for Special Olympics athletes and their families!

About our Global Partner:
The Coca-Cola Company has been a founding partner of Special Olympics since 1968. Through the generosity of cash, in-kind, volunteers and awareness that support Special Olympics Programs and events around the world, Coke has fostered acceptance and inclusion of millions of Special Olympics athletes.


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