This article was originally published on the Toronto 2015 website.
Colonel Chris Hadfield to carry the flame on Day 1 of the Pan Am Games Torch Relay
The Pan Am flame will soon be here, and the Canadian astronaut who ignited our imaginations from space will celebrate with us on May 30, Day 1 of the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games Torch Relay, presented by President’s Choice® and OLG. The Honourable David R. Peterson, chair of the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games Organizing Committee (TO2015), told an audience at the Canadian Club of Toronto today about the energy, excitement and sense of pride that will mark the arrival of the Pan Am flame.
“Our great city, region and province has never seen a summer like the one we’re about to have, and the arrival of the Pan Am flame signals that the celebrations and competitions are about to begin,” said Peterson. “The Pan Am flame speaks to our inherent and universal need to feel hope, optimism, belonging and acceptance, and it recognizes the power of sport in bringing people together and recognizing our common humanity.”
On May 25, the Pan Am flame will be lit during a traditional ceremony hosted by the Mexican Olympic Committee at the Pyramid of the Sun in Teotihuacan, Mexico. The flame will then arrive here in Canada on May 30, travelling by air, water and land as it begins its 41-day journey on home soil. The flame arrival ceremony will take place at Canada Square along Toronto’s waterfront, beginning at 2:30 p.m. The ceremony will feature an exclusive soundtrack produced by local musical director Andrew Craig and a special performance from the Obeah Opera.
The relay’s first torchbearer will depart from Canada Square and will travel through the streets of Toronto towards The Distillery Historical District, where a community celebration will take place to conclude the momentous day. The celebration will begin at 4 p.m. and will feature entertainment, including performances by Gypsy Kumbia Orchestra, The Chimera Project, Dance Migration and Jasmine Denham, who will perform the official song of the Games live for the very first time. Colonel Chris Hadfield will arrive at the celebration at 5 p.m. carrying the flame.
“It’s a great honour to carry the Pan Am flame and to be part of this historic event. The torch relay is a wonderful way to connect Canadians with each other and to build our connections within the Americas and Caribbean,” said Hadfield. “When you see our hemisphere from space it just reinforces that while the distances seem vast we share a common future.”
Day 1 of the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games Torch Relay will be a preview of what’s to come and will include a full schedule of entertainment and fun. The Pan Am flame will embark on a 41-day journey here in Canada and will be carried by more than 3,000 torchbearers through more than 130 communities.
Canadians are invited to join this historic journey and celebrate and share the Pan Am spirit leading up to the Games. To learn more about Day 1 of the torch relay and when the flame is visiting a community near you, visit TORONTO2015.org/torch-relay.
About the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games Torch Relay
The TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games Torch Relay, presented by President’s Choice® and OLG, is supported by community partner CIBC, signature supporters Star Media Group and Metroland Media, Ontario Trillium Foundation and Porter Airlines, and funding parties the Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario. The torch relay will invite Canadians to celebrate and share the Pan Am spirit throughout its 41-day journey towards Toronto, the Host City of the Games.
The torch relay starts May 30, 2015, and concludes July 10, 2015, with the dramatic lighting of the cauldron at the Opening Ceremony in downtown Toronto.
The TORONTO 2015 Games are funded by the Government of Canada, the Province of Ontario, as well as Lead Partner CIBC and other partners and sponsors.
For more information, visit TORONTO2015.org/torch-relay.
Buying tickets to the Games
The TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games ticket program is designed to be affordable and accessible for everyone by offering:
Integrated tickets: Every event ticket will allow the holder to access transit on the day of the event.
Affordable pricing: Tickets start at just $20, with 75 per cent of tickets priced $45 and under.
Half-price tickets for persons under 16 years of age, or 65 and over: Tickets will be offered at a 50 per cent discount — some will start at $10. The number of discounted tickets is limited, so buy early.
Tickets for Parapan Am sporting events will range from $20 to $35 for adults, with a youth (under 16) and senior (65+) discount from $10 to $12.50 available, depending on the event. The number of discounted tickets is limited, so don’t delay.
Easy options for buying: Tickets can be purchased online at TORONTO2015.org/tickets or at 1.855.726.2015 and internationally at 1.949.333.4824.
The TORONTO 2015 Pan American Games will take place July 10–26 and the Parapan American Games August 7–15. The TORONTO 2015 Games are funded by the Government of Canada, the Province of Ontario, as well as Lead Partner CIBC and other partners and sponsors.
The TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games Organizing Committee (TO2015) is tasked with managing and delivering the Games. It is working to bring some of the world’s best athletes and artists to Toronto and the Greater Golden Horseshoe region, giving Ontarians a unique chance to be part of the action, and making the region a hub for sport.
For more information, please contact:
Director, media relations and chief spokesperson, TO2015
The Honourable Bal Gosal, Minister of State (Sport):
“The torch relay will fuel the spirit of the Toronto 2015 Pan American Games in our nation through significant community celebrations. Our Government is committed to spreading the excitement of the Games with support for these celebrations. As every cauldron is lit during the relay, people are being brought together to celebrate our diverse culture, our accomplishments and our unique heritage.”
The Honourable Michael Coteau, Minister Responsible for the 2015 Pan/Parapan American Games:
“The future of our young people is why we decided to invest in these Games – to create jobs, build new sport infrastructure and leave an important legacy for generations to come – and that’s why I’m so proud we have nominated 50 young Ontarians who have demonstrated heroism to serve as Ontario’s official Pan Am torchbearers. The excitement for the TORONTO 2015 Pan and Parapan Am Games continues to grow as we get closer to the kick-off of the Pan Am torch relay and I know we’re all excited to cheer on these young heroes and other torchbearers as they proudly carry the torch across Ontario this summer.”
Mayor John Tory, City of Toronto:
“When the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Torch arrives in our city, it will begin a journey of uniting communities in anticipation of the largest sporting event in Canadian history. The torch relay will be one of many exciting events that will showcase Toronto’s diversity to the world, and I encourage Torontonians to cheer on the relay participants.”
Uwe Stueckmann, Senior Vice-President, Marketing, Loblaw Companies Limited:
“President’s Choice is a proud supporter of the Pan Am Games, feeding the thousands of athletes and volunteers as they bring the Games to life this summer. As a presenting sponsor of the torch relays, we understand the importance of making great things accessible to Canadians — from amazing food products, to one-of-a-kind experiences. We are delighted to help bring the torch relays to our customers and colleagues in communities across the country and to share the spirit of the 2015 Games.”
Stephen Rigby, President and CEO, Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG):
“Anticipation is growing across the province with nine days to go before the historic start of the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games Torch Relay. As a Presenting Sponsor of the torch relay, OLG looks forward to being an integral part of the local evening celebrations on the relay route and celebrating with all the torchbearers proudly carrying the flame through their communities.”
Stephen Forbes, Executive Vice-President, CIBC:
“CIBC is proud to help bring this iconic symbol of the Games to more than 130 communities and join with thousands of fans along the route to cheer on some exciting familiar faces, along with all the other incredible Canadians who will carry the flame on its 41-day journey.”