The Beijing Winter Games will be kindled in a vacuum at Olympia. On Monday, the Olympic torch will be re-lit in an empty stadium as it begins its shortened journey to Beijing for the Winter Games in February.
Monday’s (Oct 18) ceremony, like the ceremony in March 2020 to ignite the flame for Tokyo, and like those Games, which were postponed a year, is a victim of coronavirus limitations.
“Due to the scenario produced by the Covid-19 pandemic,” the Hellenic Olympic Committee declared in September, “the Lighting Ceremony will be held in careful conformity with local health procedures.”
The event is held amid the ruins of Olympia’s Temple of Hera, which served as the location of the ancient Greek games from the eighth century BC to the fourth century AD.

Clear skies are expected at 11.30 a.m. local time, when the flame will be illuminated by the sun’s rays focused in a concave. The torch will be lit from the flames by Priestess Xanthi Georgiou.
Before the epidemic, the flame was lighted behind closed doors once before, in 1984, when Greek organisers wished to protest the Los Angeles organisers’ decision to accept sponsorship of parts of the torch relay in the United States.
This time, the event will be attended by officials of the International Olympic Committee, the Greek and Chinese Olympic committees, as well as Greece’s president, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, and vaccinated members of the media.

While Greek skiers will run the first and last legs, and a Chinese athlete will carry the torch in a brief relay, organisers have decided to forego the traditional voyage around the country.
“There will be no Torch Relay on Greek land, and following the Lighting Ceremony in Ancient Olympia, the Olympic Flame will be carried to the Acropolis, where it will spend the night,” they announced on October 12.
They stated it would be brought to the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens the next morning, a second-century arena used in both the 1896 and 2004 Games, and given over to the Beijing 2022 delegation to be flown to China.

The torch traditionally travels hundreds of kilometres around Greece, visiting fifty cities and archaeological sites and being relayed by artists and sportsmen from all over the world.
On the second day after leaving Olympia, it was abandoned at nearby Sparta, where throngs came to cheer Greek-American actor Billy Zane, well known for “Titanic,” and British actor Gerard Butler, who played King Leonidas of Sparta in the film “300.”
This year’s rehearsal on Sunday coincides with the 100th anniversary of the formation of the Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee, which is being commemorated with celebrations.