Oakville Ignites with Excitement as the 2015 Toronto Pan Am Torch arrived

torch bearers with flags behind
Oakville Ignites with Excitement as the 2015 Toronto Pan Am Torch arrived

About the Author

Janet Bedford

Janet Bedford is a broker with Royal LePage in downtown Oakville, with 20 years of real estate experience. Along with helping her clients find the perfect home or sell their home, she is often found photographing the many events that take place in Oakville. She has written extensively for various publications. Janet is a graduate of MacMaster University.

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Sharing the Pan Am Spirit! The Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games Torch Relay passed through downtown Oakville on Tuesday June 23rd. Maggie Kerr, a grade eleven student from White Oaks Secondary School, began the procession. She had her torch lit by Pan Am officials on Lakeshore Road West in Oakville. Although she feels she must focus on her grades this year, Maggie found this opportunity to carry the Pan Am Torch “very exciting”.

Torch bearers two women on a road

Photo Credit: Janet Bedford

There were several opportunities to see the flame transferred from one person to another along the Lakeshore Road West route. The torch was then taken in style by boat to the Burloak Canoe Club. It then made its way to Centennial Square in the hands of Oakville YMCA Volunteer Fitness Instructor, Lynn Petruskavich. Lynn did not have to think of how to find the stage. The route from Navy Street to the stage had been chalk painted with enthusiasm by our young, talented onlookers. The singing of the National Anthem was performed by Oakville’s Youth Week Tune Up winner, 13-year-old Abbey McCay.

Photo Credit: Janet Bedford

Photo Credit: Janet Bedford

After congratulatory remarks by Mayor Rob Burton and MPP Kevin Flynn, and the lighting and celebration of the final torch, the crowd was treated to a musical performance by JUNO award-winning, Canadian Aboriginal singer and musician, Susan Aglukark.

crowd watching

Photo Credit: Janet Bedford

A few Pan Am Games Facts gathered from various sources:

  1. The TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games Torch Relay will be a 41-day journey that will share the Pan Am spirit in more than 130 communities.
  2. Town staff said the torch will travel more than 5,000 km on the road and 15,000 km by air.
  3. The Pan Am flame represents the history and spirit of the Games; it is a symbol that unites the 41 Pan American Sports Organization (PASO) member nations.
  4. The flame for the Pan Am Games is lit during a traditional ceremony at the Pyramid of the Sun, in Teotihuacan, Mexico. Following the lighting, the flame will be handed over to a representative from the Host City. The flame will then be flown back to Canada to begin its nationwide journey before arriving in Toronto to light the cauldron at Opening Ceremony, which signifies the start of the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games.

The appearance of the Pan Am Torch brought forth happiness from the crowds. Oakville was represented today. It was made even better, especially as the event was “a whopping success”; a wonderful day for the community and the crowds who attended.

Halton MPP Indira Naidoo-Harris says that “the Pan Am Flame and Torch are powerful energies and are lighting a fire in our community.”

Judging from the excitement, the number of Canadian flags, and the size of the crowd that lined the streets and filled the Centennial Square, who all waiting for a glimpse of the flame and all it represents, this was a special day for the Town of Oakville: the Most Liveable Town in Canada!

Pan Am Torches

Photo Credit: Janet Bedford

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