Sherbrooke, February 1, 2013 – The Canada Summer Games–Sherbrooke 2013 are entering a new phase. Today the Host Society lit the Canada games torch on Parliament Hill. As per tradition, the torch was ignited from the Centennial Flame, which is surrounded by a fountain inaugurated in 1966 to symbolize Canadian unity from sea to sea.
“Today’s torch-lighting ceremony represents an important milestone for the 2013 Canada Games Host Society, as the Torch Relay commences and excitement towards the Games is spread across the province of Quebec,” said Tom Quinn, Chairman of the Canada Games Council. “The Roly McLenahan Torch is a modern Canadian icon that represents the athletic and cultural elements of the Canada Games. Steeped in tradition and history, the torch lighting and 2013 Canada Games Torch Relay will create memories gathered over the next six months to be woven into the ongoing legacy that is the Canada Games.”
The ceremony took place in the presence of representatives from the Canada Games Council, members of the Sherbrooke 2013 organizing committee, and the Honourable Bal Gosal, Minister of State (Sport).
Several members of the Sherbrooke 2013 bid committee attended the ceremony. Former Mayor of Sherbrooke, Jean Perrault, spoke on behalf of the group to highlight the importance of this new step on the road to the Games:
“The Sherbrooke 2013 dream has existed for five years now. What started thanks to the initiative, perseverance, and boldness of a small group of people has become a dream that will be shared with all of Quebec thanks to the torch lighting and relay. We invite everyone to participate in the celebrations surrounding the Games torch as it travels throughout the province.”
Over the next several months the torch will make its way through 40 cities and towns in Quebec before returning to Sherbrooke for the Opening Ceremony on August 2.
Before starting its provincial journey, the torch will be in the region on February 2 and 3 for a weekend of celebrations in Magog, Sherbrooke, and Coaticook, our three host cities. Three events will give young and old the opportunity to be among the first to see the Games torch. On the program: entertainment, torch relay, photo session with the torch, and of course, the opportunity to meet Zigzag!
- Magog – Saturday, February 2, 11 a.m. to noon at Merry Point as part of the Fête des neiges celebrations
- Sherbrooke – Saturday, February 2, noon to 4 p.m. at Parc Jacques-Cartier (arrival of the torch at 2 p.m.)
- Coaticook – Sunday, February 3, noon to 3 p.m. at Parc de la Gorge de Coaticook
Before traveling throughout Quebec, the Games team will embark on a two-week tour in some 15 schools of the region, from February 4 to 14, to introduce the torch and this major multi-sport event to young people. A regional Torch Relay will also take place in July.