Nanaimo’s B.C. Summer Games organizers are making sure that the opening and closing ceremonies will be memorable.
There will be song and dance and words of wisdom surrounding the lighting and extinguishing of the torch this month.
The opening ceremonies will be held July 17 at Rotary Bowl stadium.
Simon Whitfield will be joined by Nanaimo Track and Field Club members in a torch run leading up to the lighting of the torch, and the Olympic gold-medallist triathlete will also give a keynote speech.
The event will begin at 7 p.m. with the RCMP and the Canadian Scottish Regiment (Princess Mary’s) leading the athletes, coaches, officials, special guests and dignitaries into the stadium.
Mikaila Tombe will perform the Games theme song Get in the Games along with dancers from Vibrant Dance Studios and Tempo Dance Academy, and throughout the evening there will also be performances by the Jayden Holman Band, the Abbotsford Skipping Sensations and the Le-la-la Dancers.
The closing ceremonies, also held at Rotary Bowl, begin at 1:30 p.m. on July 20. That event will also begin with an athletes’ parade, this time led by B.C. Lt.-Gov. Judith Guichon along with RCMP and Pacific Gael pipers and drummers.
Tombe will perform the Games song again and there will also be a performance by Ian Perry. David Calder, Olympic silver medallist in rowing, will deliver the keynote address. Following the extinguishing of the flame, the Distributors will take the stage to play the finale.
There will be some traffic restrictions on Third Street on the days of the opening and closing ceremonies. Vancouver Island University is offering free parking from July 17-20.
Also, Loudon Park and Westwood Lake Park will see some parking restrictions and beach access at Westwood will be limited July 18-20.