NANJING, China--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Youth Olympic flame lighting ceremony for the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games (YOG) took place on April 30 in Athens, Greece at the Panathenaic Stadium to begin the official Youth Olympic Torch Relay. The ceremony also marked the start of the Virtual Torch Relay which gives fans the opportunity to be torchbearers before the flame arrives once again in China in August ahead of the 2nd Summer YOG.
The Youth Olympic flame lighting ceremony was taken from the Olympic tradition that uses the rays of the sun to start the flame. As soon as the torch was lit, four young athletes kicked off the torch relay inside the stadium followed by International Olympic Committee Honorary President, Jacques Rogge and the Hellenic Olympic Committee president, Spyros Capralos spoke a few words expressing their hope that the Nanjing 2014 YOG would be successful. The torch was then handed to Chinese Olympic Committee Chairman Liu Peng followed by Vice President and Secretary General of the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games Organizing Committee and Mayor of Nanjing, Miao Ruilin kicked off the Virtual Torch Relay.
At the Nanjing 2014 YOG, everyone can use the official application to help carry the Youth Olympic flame. The Nanjing 2014 Virtual Torch Relay offers 258 locations for torchbearers to reach as the torch travels through the 204 countries and regions that will participate in the Games in August. Then, after a 98-day trip, the flame will arrive in Nanjing to mark the start of the Games.
The Virtual Torch Relay application supports 16 languages and can be downloaded from the iTunes, Google Play, and the official website at www.nanjing2014.org. All 258 sites can be unlocked by following in the footsteps of the official mascot, NANJINGLELE.
The application also has an interactive option called “Give Me Fire”. Using this feature, users can pass on the Youth Olympic flame to friends. There are also numbers of mini games to engage young fans. The application represents a new way to pass the torch online to bring the Olympic values of excellence, friendship, and respect to the young people of the world.