Expatica news

Olympic torch arrives in Belgium

21 June 2004

BRUSSELS – The Olympic torch arrived in Belgium on Monday as part of  78,000-kilometer, 45-day round the world trip to the August Olympic Games in Athens.

The torch’s first Belgian port of call was Antwerp and it will arrive in Brussels on Tuesday.

In the Belgian capital, a musical celebration to welcome the flame’s arrival will be held on Rond Point Schuman in the heart of the EU district from 10am until noon.

The festivities will include performances by Milk Inc., a new Belgian pop band performing its latest song “I Don’t Care,” and the boy band B3 playing its current hit “Move Your Body.”

The latter is the theme song of the European year of Education through Sport 2004 (EYES) and preaches that sports should be part of everybody’s life.

Viviane Reding, the EU commissioner for education and health, will accompany the lighting of the torch on a podium on Rond Point Schuman.

After that the flame will be carried to the Grand’Place, where there will be even more festivities from 12 until 2pm. Not to be left out of the fun, Manneken Pis himself will be donning a special outfit in honor of the occasion.

From Belgium the torch next goes to Amsterdam.

The Olympic flame symbolizes the Olympic ideas of noble competition, friendship, peace, culture and education. The 2004 torch relay is the first to span the globe leading to this year’s games in Athens, birthplace of the modern games in 1896.

The torch burns a mixture of butane and propylene to produce a rich, orange hue. It has been manufactured to burn for 20 minutes. Each torchbearer carries an individual torch, and passes the flame torch to torch. More than 10,000 torchbearers are to participate this year.

Those who are interested in more details can track the torch’s route on www.torch2004.com.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject : Belgian news