Blog by Brenda Russell

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Canadian Journey Begins in Victoria BC

Olympic Torch Comes to Victoria BC

Normally I talk about homes and real estate. This is a historical event on its way and Victoria is perfect for it.   I wanted to make sure you have information about the Olypmic Torch Relay so The Canadian Journey begins here! We are really a sports playground... check it all out below:

The Starting Point

On October 30, 2009, the eyes of the world will be on Greater Victoria, as we host the launch of the nation-wide Olympic Torch Relay for the 2010 Winter Games. The flame will be lit by the rays of sun in Olympia, Greece, and travel to Victoria directly from Athens. On its first two days of the relay, the Olympic flame will chart a course through virtually every municipality in the Capital Region. The international media spotlight will be on our community for what is widely recognized as the start of the Olympic experience.

The Celebration

Friday October 30 5:30 - 8:30pm The Olympic Torch Relay Celebration will be a once-in-a lifetime event - an incredible opportunity for our community to demonstrate our spirit, pride and character, while showcasing our city's unforgettable beauty and incredible resource of local talent and creativity to the world. Set against the backdrop of the historic Legislative buildings, the Fairmont Empress and Victoria's stunning Inner Harbour, the Olympic Torch Celebration will feature a kaleidoscope of colour, energy and light in a multicultural, multidisciplinary spectacle.

The Olympic Torch Relay Celebration will feature unforgettable ensemble performances featuring many of Victoria's best-known musicians, performers and artists, acrobatics and dance as well as involvement by local luminaries, athletes and celebrities. Attendees can expect a spectacular multi-media presentation, exciting street-level animation featuring giant puppets, interactive characters and lanterns and a choreographed aerial sculpture featuring audience inclusion and interaction. Thousands of handheld torchieres, state-of-the-art glow products and a thrilling pyrotechnics finale will mirror the symbolism of the flame, while adding to the beauty and spectacle of this momentous event.

 The Map for Victoria, UVic, Oak Bay, Esquimalt, View Royal, and CFB Esquimalt.

Oak Bay Olympic Torch Relay

The Relay

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: City of Victoria

Route party plans: The City of Victoria will host the official arrival of the Olympic flame as it arrives in Canada from Athens, Greece. There will be a formal ceremony in the Inner Harbour and on the lawns of the Legislature at 9:30am. This is the site of the large-scale Community Celebration starting at 5:30pm until 8:30pm.

Arrival Ceremony Time: 9:30am 
Relay Route Times: Relay begins from Legislative grounds at 10:40am Community Celebration Time: 5:30pm - 8:30pm

Best viewing points for the torch relay in the City of Victoria:

Morning (from 10:30am approx): Inner Harbour; Belleville between Menzies and Government; Government Street to Pandora; Centennial Square; CRD Square, Chinatown, Wharf Street at Johnson Street.

Evening (from 6pm approx):

  • Oak Bay Avenue from Foul Bay Rd., to Fort Street, Rockland Avenue, Rockland from Pemberton to Cook Street, Cook Street Village and Beacon Hill Park at Cook, Dallas Rd.
  • Waterfront from Beacon Hill Park to Mile Zero (7pm approx)
  • Government Street from Dallas Rd. to Belleville Street (7:30pm)

For more information: Visit www.victoriaspirit.ca for details on Victoria and the entire region's plans.

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: Township of Esquimalt

Route Party Plans: The Township of Esquimalt will have two "Celebration Stations" set up on the day of the Olympic Torch Relay, strategically near the beginning and end of its time in the Municipality of Esquimalt. Residents are encouraged to visit Memorial Park on Esquimalt Road and L'ecole Victoria Brodeur on Head Street. These celebration stations will be a great place to gather, see some of Esquimalt's talented entertainers, pick up a hand-held flag, get their faces painted and more. Students will have the opportunity to pick up a healthy lunch on their way back to school after the relay has travelled through.

Songhees Flame Blessing Ceremony (open to public): at Songhees Band Council at approximately 12:15pm

Best viewing points for the torch relay in Esquimalt: 
Along Esquimalt Rd., between Dominion and Admirals Road. Relay Route Times: 11:10 - 12:27 (including Flame Blessing ceremonies at Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations) Route Party Time: 10:30am - 1:00pm

For more information: Visit www.esquimalt.ca for event details, or contact Vicki Klyne at 250-592-0023

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: Town of View Royal

Route Party Plans: A community gathering will take place at Helmcken Centennial Park, with live musical entertainment and food, planned for after the torch runs through. Community is encouraged to gather early.

Relay Route Times: 12:25 - 12:50 
Route Party Time: (Post Torch Arrival 12noon - 1pm)

For more information: Contact Elissa Smith at esmith@town.viewroyal.bc.ca or call 250-479-6800

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: CFB Esquimalt

Route Party Plans: A welcome ceremony and BBQ for base personnel (please note this is closed to the general public)

Best viewing points: n/a 
Relay Route Times: 11:30 - 11:48

For more information: Major Steve Sawyer at Stephen.Sawyer@forces.gc.ca or call 250-363-4047

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: Town of Sidney

Route Party Plans: The day kicks off at the Mary Winspear Centre at 11:30 am. Visitors can munch on a Sidney Slice baked especially for the day by Sidney Bakery and enjoy a musical program and video presentation of Sidney Olympic stories produced by students from Parkland School and volunteers from Honeycomb Webworks. The first 500 children coming to the Centre who are accompanied by an adult will receive a commemorative tee shirt. Souvenir Olympic Torch Relay flags will be available for everyone. Celebrations then move outside to welcome the arrival of the Olympic Torch.

Best viewing points for the torch relay in Sidney: 
Along Beacon Avenue from Pat Bay to Fourth Street; Along Sidney Avenue in front of Town Hall; Beacon Avenue at First Street, Ocean Avenue; Lochside Drive at Tulista Park.

Relay Route Times: 1:15 - 1:30pm 
Route Party Time: 11:30am - 1:30pm

For more information: Contact Murray Clarke at mclarke@sidney.ca or call 250-656-1139

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: North Saanich

Route Party Plans: Local school children and the general public are invited to gather at Panorama Recreation Centre for fun, Olympic themed events, videos and a celebration to welcome the torch as it comes through. There will be a big screen in the tennis building to show an Olympic video; other plans include a hockey challenge between local middle schools, and demonstration sports in speed skating and curling. A joint venture by North Saanich, Sidney and Central Saanich.

Best viewing points for the torch relay in North Saanich: Close to Panorama Leisure Centre.

Relay Route Times: 1:36 - 1:45pm 
Route Party Time: 11:00am - 3:00pm (Torch arrival at approximately 1:40pm)

For more information: Contact Eric Knoester at eknoester@panoramarec.bc.ca or call 250-655-2177

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: Central Saanich

Best viewing points for the torch relay in Central Saanich: 
Saanichton Green Park, Central Saanich Municipal Hall, Centennial Park, Stelly's High School; in Brentwood Bay along West Saanich, Wallace Drive from West Saanich to Benvenuto, Butchart Gardens.

Relay Route Times:

  • Approx. 1:50pm at Saanichton Green Park area; 2:20pm at West Saanich and Stelly's
  • 2:50 at Butchart Gardens (admission fees apply).

For more information: Contact Bonnie McKenzie at bmackenzie@csaanich.bc.ca

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: District of Saanich

Route Party Plans: The Saanich Torch Relay Route Celebration will allow residents to view the Olympic Torch from a safe and controlled environment. The celebration will include a mixture of stage entertainment, interactive winter sports, virtual games, and a variety of information and cultural displays. Elementary schools will display their completed banner projects and have the opportunity to meet with local athletes.

Best viewing points for the torch relay in Saanich: Elk/ Beaver Lake Regional Park. Braefoot Community Park offers a long stretch of sidewalk and grass shoulder area for optimal viewing along Mackenzie Avenue between Blenkinsop and Cedar Hill X Road.

Relay Route Times:

  • 3:45pm on Elk Lake
  • 4:30pm on McKenzie Avenue 

Route Party Time: 2:30pm - 5:30pm (Torch arrival time expected at 4:45pm)

For more information: Contact Rob Phillips at rob.phillips@saanich.ca or call 250-475-5558.

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: University of Victoria

Route Party Plans: Displays and interactive activities, plus the opportunity to meet Vikes' Olympians, BBQ and refreshments in the events area adjacent to Centennial Stadium.

Best viewing points for the torch relay at UVIC: 
On the raised verges either side of McGill Rd and along the Ring Road from McGill to Henderson Rd.

Relay Route Times: 5:00pm - 5:25pm 
Route Party Time: 3:30pm to 5:30pm

For more information: Contact Kera St. John at kstjohn@uvic.ca or call 250-721-7632.

Day One: October 30 
Route Community: Oak Bay

Route Party Plans: Oak Bay will show its Canadian pride with activities, excitement and colorful displays for everyone from small children to seniors, with most of the activity centered in the Oak Bay Village. Excitement will build thanks to a 'celebrity announcer' from describing the location of the torch as the relay proceeds through Oak Bay.

Best viewing points for the torch relay in Oak Bay: Camosun College's Lansdowne Campus at Henderson Rd., Foul Bay Rd to Cadboro Bay Rd, Oak Bay Secondary school, Monterey Avenue to Oak Bay, Oak Bay Avenue to Foul Bay Rd.

Relay Route Times: 5:25 - 6:00pm 
Route Party Time: 4:30pm to 6:00pm (expected torch arrival time 6:00pm)

For more information: Contact Lorna Curtis at lcurtis@oakbay.ca

Day Two: October 31 
Route Community: Sooke

Route Party Plans: Ceremony begins at Municipal Hall/Fire Hall, 2215 Otter Point Road with Mayor Janet Evans officiating at the welcoming ceremony. Portraying the history of early settlement, culture, sports and industry. At 8:00 at everyone is welcomed to the Community Celebration Breakfast and Concert located at Edward Milne Community School, courtesy of the Province of BC, where local entertainers will include:

  • Sooke Pipes and Drums
  • Cole Grifter (youth pop band)
  • Francophone Troubador Rejean Bussieres
  • Sooke Folk Music Group
  • Ekoos Choir
  • Sooke River Bluegrass Group
  • Accordionist Karl Mosig

Information number for public queries: 250-642-1634 - District of Sooke.

Relay Route Times: 7:19am - 7:50am 
Route Party Time: 7am Ceremony, 8am Celebration Breakfast

Day Two: October 31 
Route Community: Metchosin

Best viewing points for the torch relay in Metchosin: Happy Valley Rd. to Witty's Beach Rd.
Relay Route Times: 8:16am - 8:25am

Day Two: October 31 
Route Community: Fort Rodd Hill & Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Sites of Canada

Route Party Plans: The Band of the 5th (BC) Field Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery will play on site. Hot chocolate and coffee will be served with doughnuts and muffins. Parks Canada staff and volunteers in uniform and in period costumes along with youth groups including Navy League cadets will line the torch route as the torch proceeds through the 18.7 ha. site. A World War II era jeep carrying staff in period uniforms will escort the torch most of the way around the sites. The torch will go up to the top of Fisgard Lighthouse tower. As this is the first of several Parks Canada National Park or national historic sites on the Olympic Torch route, Parks Canada dignitaries may be on hand to welcome the torch bearer.

Best viewing points for the torch relay at Fort Rodd Hill: On Fisgard Island to view the torch come out the causeway to the lighthouse and then up through the building and out again at the top of the tower. Because of very limited space on the island this location will only be open to accredited media. 
Inside Fort Rodd Hill NHS near the entrance/exit to be able to see the torch coming in and going back out. From the Lower Battery in Fort Rodd Hill NHS

Relay Route Times: 9:15 - 9:40am 
Route Party Time: 8:00am to 10:00am

For more information: Contact Dale Mumford 250 478-6481 dale.mumford@pc.gc.ca

OTHER INFORMATION, DETAILS OF INTEREST TO THE PUBLIC The site is reached off Ocean Blvd. in Colwood. Parking is limited to about 100 spaces so visitors should car pool. A shuttle bus will run to the sites from the Park and Ride on Ocean Blvd. at Hwy. 1A beginning at 8:00 a.m. Pets are not permitted on site. For more information about the sites phone 250 478-5849 or visit www.pc.gc.ca/fortroddhill

Day Two: October 31 
Route Community: Colwood

Route Party Plans: The West Shore invites sports groups, schools children and members of the community to join us in a celebration of the Olympic torch relay. The morning will start with a breakfast for the community complete with entertainment from local talents. Bear Mountain Arena is booked for on and off ice activities. Join in on Olympic based art and crafts for the little ones, enjoy the on ice demonstrations of our future curling, figure skating and hockey Olympians or take part in the interactive displays and events. There will be something for the whole family.

Relay Route Timing: 8:30am - 9:45am 
Route Party Time: Saturday October 31 from 8:30am to 12 noon

For more information contact: Karen Frost at Juan de Fuca Recreation Centre.

Day Two: October 31 
Route Community: Langford

Relay Route timing: 10:33 - 10:55 
Best viewing points for the torch relay in Langford: Along Goldstream Avenue at Vanthberg to Spencer Rd.

Olympic Torch Relay – Notice to Residents and Business Regarding Parking Restrictions

The City of Victoria will host the official arrival of the Olympic flame as it arrives in Canada from Athens, Greece on Friday, October 30. For your information, the Olympic Torch Relay route will include roadways on which parking will be restricted.

Signage and/or meter hoods will be placed on Thursday, October 29 with parking restrictions in force on Friday, October 30. The majority of parking will be affected in the morning only. The reverse side of this notice lists the roadways affected.

Please be advised that parking violations may result in vehicles being towed at the owner’s expense.

Full details will be published in the Sunday, October 25th issue of the Times Colonist.

Thank you for your patience and understanding during this community event.

Alan Lowe
Chair
Greater Victoria Spirit Committee

Parking Restrictions

  • Government from Superior to Fisgard – both sides
  • Government from Michigan to Superior – west side only
  • Belleville from Government to Douglas – both sides
  • Superior from from Government to Menzies – both sides
  • Menzies from Belleville to Superior – both sides
  • Government - 200 block (in front of Emily Carr house) – east side only
  • Courtney from from Wharf to Government
  • Wharf from Broughton to Government – both sides
  • Humboldt from Government to Douglas – both sides
  • Michigan – north side only from Douglas to Menizes
  • Pandora from Broad to Government – both sides
  • Fisgard from Government to Store – both sides
  • Rockland - 1400 block, in front of Government House – north side
  • Pemberton from Rockland to Fort – west side only
  • In front of 50 Songhees – both sides

Events

Day1 - October 30:
Victoria
Esquimalt
View Royal
CFB Esquimalt
Sidney
North Saanich 
Central Saanich
Saanich
UVic
Oak Bay

Day 2 - October 31
Sooke
Metchosin 
Fort Rodd Hill
Colwood
Langford

 

Parking Restrictions

 

Find out more about some of the events that are going on leading up the the kickoff of the Relay. MORE...

Olympic Torch Relay