Thursday, September 17, 2009

Cross-Canada countdown is on for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay

Skydivers parachuting in from above, top regional musical performers, giant puppets, a dazzling light show, foot stomping Acadian fiddlin’, towering snow and ice sculptures, a huge tepee, as well as a kazoo band: that is just a sampling of the unique local flavour almost 200 torch relay celebration communities plan on showcasing when they welcome the Olympic Flame and potentially the world to their part of the country.
Communities in all regions are readying themselves to become an "Olympic Town" for the day when the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay, presented by Coca-Cola and RBC and supported by the Government of Canada, makes its historic 45,000 kilometre journey across Canada starting October 30. One of the most anticipated announcements in each community hosting a celebration will be the naming of the community torchbearer. They have been nominated by fellow members of their own city, town or village as the person who best exemplifies their civic pride and the Olympic Spirit.
The Olympic Flame will be lit by the power of the sun’s rays during a time-honoured ceremony in Olympia, site of the first Olympic Games in ancient Greece. Sheltered in a security lantern, similar to a miner’s lantern, the Olympic Flame will embark on a trans-Atlantic flight to Canada on board a Canadian Armed Forces’ aircraft. Less than 24 hours later, it will arrive in Victoria, BC. The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay will visit more than 1,030 communities from coast to coast to coast across Canada before it finishes its 106-day journey in downtown Vancouver on February 12, 2010 when the Olympic Flame will light the Olympic Cauldron during the Opening Ceremony of the Olympic Winter Games in front of a television audience of billions. During the longest domestic torch relay in Olympic history, 12,000 torchbearers will carry the Olympic Flame and at various opportunities will feature nearly 100 alternative transportation modes, including dogsled, Haida canoe, chuckwagon, seaplane, ice resurfacer, and double-decker bus.