The city of Cali lights the fire that will ignite the continent’s passion for Olympic sport in an event full of color and significance for the city and the Valle del Cauca as hosts of the first edition of the Junior Pan American Games.
At the foot of the Cristo Rey monument that overlooks the city, a group of Colombian Scouts created the fire representing the birth of a new Pan American Flame. The Scouts then passed the flame to Cali Mayor Jorge Ivan Ospina and Valle del Cauca Governor Clara Luz Roldan before Panam Sports President Neven Ilic used it to light the torch that will spread excitement for the Games throughout the Valle del Cauca.
Colombia’s Youth Olympic Games champion Valeria Cabezas and National Youth Swimming champion Juan Manuel Morales were chosen as the outstanding young athletes to begin the torch relay, representing the nearly 4,000 competitors who will battle for medals at Cali 2021. They received the torch from President Ilic before running around the iconic Cristo Rey monument surrounded by guests of honor, authorities, and members of the media.
The Scouts created the flame signaling the birth of a new tradition in Pan American sport using four ingredients that have been utilized since ancient times, including flint, acetylene, potassium and sugar permanganate and potassium and glycerin permanganate. The historic moment marks the beginning of a new chapter for the athletes of the Americas and gives recognition to Cali-Valle as the first home of the Junior Pan American Games.