Thursday, 17 December 2009

Olympic Fever

Our busy Main Street shut down completely at 9:00am this morning. There were RCMP vehicles on standby, and York Regional Police cars with their lights flashing, and the road was choked with thousands of cheering patriotic Canadians, wearing red and white and waving our Maple Leaf flag.




Why all the excitement?

The Olympic Flame was coming through town.





The route was lined with enthusiastic supporters. See the Canadian Olympic gloves the girl on the left is wearing? I desperately want to buy a pair, but they're always sold out.

The Town Crier arrived on a horse-drawn carriage to announce the Flame's imminent arrival.


The Olympic Flame was carried along Main Street by at least fourteen different torch bearers, with the crowds cheering loudly each time the flame was handed off to a new runner.

A school band played "O Canada" from the snow-lined sidewalk, and hundreds of students from nearby schools were in the crowd. Mike Harris, who won silver in curling at the Nagano Games in 1998, was in the crowd in his Team Canada jacket.

The Flame is crossing Canada to herald the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. You can follow the progress here.

These kids were waving their flags and chanting "Canada! Canada!" for the benefit of a News television camera crew. No doubt they'll be looking for themselves on the local news broadcast tonight.

Inside the new Arts and Culture Centre, video clips of the Olympic torch’s history as well as how this torch was made and the torch relay through Canada were shown on the giant screen.
Karen Cockburn was signing autographs and displaying her Olympic medals. Isaac was very impressed.... he is definitely inspired and he told me he wants to be an Olympic athlete in training when he grows up. Karen let me hold her medals.... ooooh... real Olympic Silver!


And then The Bride and I helped Isaac hold the Olympic Torch for a special picture.

YoungerSon, Isaac's dad, was 6 years old when he had a candle lighted with the Olympic Flame at our town's Olympic Torch Ceremony for the 1988 Winter Olympics that were held in Calgary.

The Olympic Cauldron will be lit in Vancouver on February 12, 2010, during the Opening Ceremonies of the Winter Games.

Another picture of the Flame handover here. Thanks Ken.

25 comments:

dogbait said...

I saw that kid with the Tim Hortens top and would kill for a vanilla killer again.

BTW, give me tee shirts and shorts anyday even if I whinge about 40c.

R. Duckie said...

It came through Victoria about a month and a half ago. It was pretty cool!

Changes in the wind said...

Special treat to experience this.

Bogey said...

The flame is heading our way and I am so looking for the opportunity to be a witness to this event. Great pictures of the event.

rosemary said...

WOW....how amazing is that event. I love watching the Olympics...and to have them so close....well, that's unsurpassed in the WOW factor. Love your photo with the torch.

Charles Bjørnsen Ravndal said...

Wow that's an awesome event! I hope I get to experience something like that. It's nice to be back in the blogging world after a month of project exam

Squirrel of Nyack said...

wow! major excitement in your neck of the woods. we're up to not much here, just waiting for a promised snowstorm and finishing up the holiday shopping.

Squirrel of Nyack said...

I love the song "O Canada"

Ken said...

Sure was exciting. We had the date marked on the calendar for months. My wife actually took a holiday just so she could see the flame pass by.
Those two cars must have passed all the stopped cars and trucks, a couple of real winners!
BTW, I'm in one of your photos.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

How very very exciting and moving, too...! Knowing that this comes from such a long long tradition--it had to be thrilling to see this. And to hold some actual medals in your hands...More Thrills! What a special thing to have happen right there in your town!

LC said...

What a honor to have the Olympic flame coming through town. Merry Christmas. Ranger and Lloyd

CanadianSwiss said...

The flame went through my home town, too, I heard. I wish I had been there.

Dumdad said...

Flaming great!

Dumdad said...

Hi,

I don't recall a David Harvey of Whitstable. I did work for The Whitstable Times many years ago - did he work there?

Your EG Tour Guide said...

How very cool to have held the torch!

Dumdad said...

I did meet Mark Ashton in Paris and I wrote on my blog about him coming to lunch etc but I didn't know David Harvey. Still, it's a small world!

edward said...

nice bride and baby and you and peoples, and gloves! you should pre-$ order some gloves if you can.

madretz said...

I got goosebumps reading your post because of that Olympic country pride. I love the Olympics and really really REALLY wanted to go to them in Vancouver. Because I really really REALLY love Vancouver. It's one of my favorite cities in the world, probably right behind San Francisco. Toronto would probably be in the top 5!

Hilary said...

Oh very cool post, Shammie. My son saw it make its way through RMC in Kingston last week.

sonia a. mascaro said...

Great reportage!

I wish to you and yours a Happy Christmas and a Wonderful New Year!
A big hug to you.
Um grande abraço para você.

Ken said...

Good guess!, I thought I was well disguised. Next time I'll wear my Emmerson mask!
Don't know about you but I found myself watching the flame on it's tour around the GTA on TV and it still gave me goosebumps!

Ginnie said...

One of the reasons why we just bought a 40" flat-screen TV, Sham, is so we can watch the Vancouver Olympics here in Holland!!! :)

Suldog said...

You got to hold The Torch? Way cool.

I tried to get it together for MY WIFE and I to attend the Vancouver games, but our finances wouldn't really allow it. Too bad, as she attended the Montreal summer games before she met me. It would have made a nice bookend for her Olympic experiences.

photowannabe said...

That's so thrilling Shammie. There is nothing like the pomp and "glamour" of the Olympics. Hubby, son and I attended the Montreal Olympics in 1976. It was amazing experience for all of us.
If I don't get back before Christmas, I just want to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Joyous New Year.
Sue

Middle Ditch said...

Such an amazing event!! It looks you had some fun.

Passing by to wish you and yours a most joyful Christmas