Let the games begin: the running of the flags

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As the Vancouver 2011 Outgames gets underway in Vancouver and Whistler today, a special group of 111 volunteers are limbering up and getting ready to particpate in the running of the flags, which will mark the official opening of this week-long celebration of sport, human rights and culture.

For those wanting to catch a glimpse of the flags as they make their way from Whistler and across Vancouver you can watch for the runners on the following routes.  The runners will converge on the Vancouver Art Gallery for the opening ceremonies and lighting of the Cauldron which gets underway starting at 5pm.

The Marine Leg – University of British Columbia to Vancouver Art Gallery (3:30pm – 6:55pm)

This leg will see runners start off at the Student Union Building and depart to cover the grounds of UBC to then follow on to NW Marine Drive and on to Jericho Park. From Jericho Park  the runners will cross English Bay to Sunset Beach at the bottom of Davie Street. Runners will follow Davie Street to Hornby Street and follow the Bike Lane across the City to The Vancouver Art Gallery.

The Land Leg – Simon Fraser University (3:00pm – 6:55pm)

This leg will see runners start off at the Student Union Building and depart to cover the grounds of SFU to then follow on to University Drive E to Gaglardi Way to Broadway  and on to the Sky Train Station where the runners will board the train and travel west to Commercial Drive Station and continue the run north to 1st Avenue and on to Venables where runners will turn west to Chinatown, and the Street Viaduct Bike Lane West on to  Hornby Street Bike Lane to head South to the Vancouver Art Gallery.

The Mountain Leg – Whistler & Grouse Mountain (3:00pm – 6:55pm)

This leg will see runners start off at the heart of the Village and cover off the Resort following roadways and trails to the HeliJet pad where the flags will be transported to the top of Grouse Mountain where the flags continue on to the Gondola and are carried down to the mountains base where the run resumes to pass Cleveland Park, Capilano Suspension Bridge, pass under the Trans-Canada Highway, to Marine Drive and on to the Lions Gate Bridge where at mid point another pass off  will see the runners follow the Stanley Park Causeway  and on to the Seawall at the corner of  Denman and Georgia to head East along the Seawall past the Bayshore  to the Vancouver Convention Centre where the final portion of the leg will follow Burrard Street South and East along Georgia to pass the Hotel Vancouver and join the other runners at the Vancouver Art Gallery North Lawn.

2011 Vancouver Outgames - The Running of the Flags

Each leg of the run, divided into the marine, land and mountain, will see runners carrying the three flags of the games: the Vancouver 2011 Outgames flag, the Gay and Lesbian International Sports Association, North America Chapter flag and the rainbow flag.

North America Outgames Vancouver 2011
25 – 31 July 2011

For more information on visit http://www.vancouver2011outgames.com

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