From the Olympic trials to the torch relays, the opening ceremonies, the Games and finally to the closing ceremonies, the Olympic Games are a world-wide event that bring a competitive spirit to the world along with uniting the world through this competition. The 14-day games consist of various winter sports including curling, snowboarding, speed skating, ice hockey, figure skating and many more. The 2018 Winter Olympics will be held in PyeongChang, South Korea (about two hours away from Seoul). The event’s estimated cost is only $10 billion. While that seems expensive, in comparison to the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games, it is five times less expensive.
The torch is crafted to represents PyeongChang specifically and then unify of the rest of the world. It is 70 centimeters in length representing the altitude of the city, which is 700 meters above sea level, along with the white and gold tones, which are the main colors of PyeongChang. Finally, the five angled shapes in the middle of the torch are symbolic of the spirit and common passion for the Games that connects all races, nations, religions, genders, culture and the five continents who participate in the Games. Junior Chase Hill said, “The torch hand-off is an awesome tradition with a lot of history. It is special because it unites all the countries together before the Games.”
The opening and closing ceremonies will be held in the PyeongChang Olympic Stadium, but they have been working hard to make their stadium warmer due to the inside freezing temperatures of the venue. The opening ceremony will be on Feb. 9, and it will follow the same structure as the Sochi Olympics in 2014. The schedule is as follows: entry by the head of state, the national anthem, the parade of athletes, the symbolic release of pigeons, the declaration of the opening, raising the Olympic flag and playing the Olympic anthem, taking the Olympic oath by athletes, officials then coaches, the final torch hand off and, finally, the famous artistic program.
The games will begin, and spectators will be able to watch via TV from all over the world. Senior Molly Bradach said, “I love the figure skating portion of the Olympics because when I was younger all I wanted to be was one of them and they are just so impressive.”
During the Olympic pre-season, North Korea agreed to send athletes to the Games. Only one pair of figure skaters have qualified for the games, and North Korea claims they will come out with a gold medal for this event. Senior Brae Davidson said, “I believe that every country should have the opportunity to support their colors in the Winter Olympics.”
The 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics is an exciting time where all nations can come together and celebrate a common sense of pride for their countries.