Young Ambassadors

Magical Moments in China

The Young Ambassadors welcome BYU president C. Shane Reese and Wendy Reese (center), associate international vice president Jeff Ringer and Amy Ringer (top left), and general counsel Steve Sandberg (top right) to their show in Hangzhou, China.

The Young Ambassadors kicked off the second week of their tour with a magical day at Shanghai Disneyland, one of the world’s most beloved theme parks. On Tuesday, May 14, the Young Ambassadors arrived in Hangzhou and explored the historical and natural beauty of the city. They visited Lingyin Temple and Fei Lai Feng, where ancient Buddhist carvings and temple grounds provided a glimpse into China’s spiritual heritage. The day concluded with a walk along Hefang Street, where they explored traditional crafts and local delicacies.

They spent the next morning by Xi Hu (West Lake) before the busy afternoon. BYU president C. Shane Reese and his wife, Wendy; associate international vice president Jeff Ringer and his wife, Amy; and general counsel Steve Sandberg and his son John all arrived in China in time to watch the Young Ambassadors perform at the Dongpo Theater. President Reese greeted the group following the performance and expressed his gratitude for their positive representation of BYU in China.

The Young Ambassadors begin a fun-filled day at Shanghai Disneyland.

The Young Ambassadors took a train to Hefei the next day, where they delivered a stunning performance at the Hefei Grand Theater. The following morning, the group took a bus to Yancheng. There they performed at the Jiangsu Grand Theater. The audience that night was filled with families and included many excited children who enthusiastically waved LED light sticks in response to the dancers’ energy.

Saturday was a much-needed recovery day for the group. They spent the morning enjoying the amenities of their hotel and exploring the city. That afternoon they visited the China Yellow Sea Wetlands Museum, where they learned about the ecological importance of the region. They also spent time exploring the Zhulin Hotel, a replica of old Yancheng that hearkens back to the China of the 1960s and ’70s, before diplomatic relations between the People’s Republic of China and the United States were reestablished.

Members of the Young Ambassadors (from left to right) Weston Wright, Riley Holmes, Mariel Alexander, Bryndal Braithwaite, and JRay Kuhn explore China’s Lingyin Temple.

Sunday morning the group boarded a train for Xi’an. They spent the evening surrounded by the vibrant culture and crowds that thronged the city, from the nearby Dayan (Big Wild Goose) Pagoda to the Great Tang All Day Mall.

The Young Ambassadors’ second week in China was a journey of new discoveries and vivid performances that bridged cultures and created lasting memories. As they continue their tour, the students look forward to more opportunities to connect with new friends and share their talents.

An excited audience in Hangzhou shows its love for the Young Ambassadors.

BYU president C. Shane Reese greets Young Ambassadors members Gabrielle McCarter and Mariel Alexander (right) after the show in Hangzhou, China.