Games’ torch comes off ferry to start relayThe Guardian
Premier Robert Ghiz will help kick off the 2009 Canada Games torch relay Monday by running the first leg after the torch arrives on the ferry at Wood Islands at 9:30 a.m.
On hand to welcome the torch on the crossing from Caribou, N.S. will be Ghiz, Joseph Spriet, president, 2009 Canada Games; Terry Shea, general manager, P.E.I. Mutual Insurance Company and Mark MacDonald, CEO of Northumberland Ferries.
When the ferry docks, Spriet will accept the torch and then hand it to Ghiz, who will run the first leg of the relay. A news conference will be held prior to the ferry’s arrival.
P.E.I. Mutual Insurance Company is the title sponsor for the relay which will last six days before ending in Summerside.
The torch will make its journey across the Island, being passed from runner to runner, until it hits Tignish and returns to Summerside for the opening ceremonies on Aug. 15.
Spriet has expressed his excitement at the prospect of the upcoming relay.
“This torch relay kickoff is actually a real beginning of getting the Games going in our community,” said Spriet.
“Our Games will unite P.E.I. from one tip of the province to the other in celebration of the opportunity to show the rest of the country what Prince Edward Island is all about.”
Torchbearers were chosen in a public competition. Groups, consisting of five to seven individuals, will carry the torch for a 12-kilometre section of highway. The competition was open to residents of P.E.I. only.
There will be 19 legs of the relay, which will cover 491 kilometres of Island highways. Runners will start each morning between 9 and 10 a.m. and will finish for the day between 3 and 5 p.m.
Organizers have hinted there will be a surprise carrier who will run the torch into the opening ceremonies.
The torch itself will zigzag its way across the province and pass through several communities, including Wood Islands, Montague, Cardigan, Souris, St. Peters, Stratford, Charlottetown, Cornwall, Crapaud, New Glasgow, Cavendish, Kensington, Abram-village, O'Leary, Tignish, Alberton, Tyne Valley, Wellington and Summerside.
On Monday, the route will cover Wood Islands to Pooles Corner, then to Fortune and Souris. On Tuesday, the torch heads to St. Peters, Morell, Stratford and Charlottetown.