Tokyo Olympics to have two cauldrons for Olympic Flame

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For a second straight Summer Olympics, there will be two cauldrons for the Olympic Flame.

The 2020 Tokyo Games will have the traditional cauldron inside the Olympic Stadium and a second in the Japanese capital’s bustling waterfront area, organizers confirmed Monday.

A second cauldron at the Ariake side of the Yume-no-Ohashi Bridge will be added to allow “the wider public to view it and experience the spirit and excitement of the Games.” The Flame will be displayed in one location at a time.

At the last Summer Games, a second cauldron was placed at Candelaria Church in downtown Rio. That decision was made in part because the stadium for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, the Maracanã, did not hold track and field events and thus would not be used for almost all of the Games. The cauldron lit inside the Maracanã was also not visible from outside the stadium.

The 2004 Olympic marathon bronze medalist Vanderlei de Lima lit the Maracanã cauldron. A former homeless boy, 14-year-old Jorge Gomes, lit the outdoor cauldron, according to the CBC.

In 2010, the Vancouver Winter Games had two cauldrons — one inside in the indoor ceremonies venue (and thus not viewable from the outside) and one outside in the city of Vancouver for the public to view.

Wayne GretzkySteve Nash and Nancy Greene lit the indoor cauldron (joined by Catriona Le May Doan, whose part of the cauldron malfunctioned). Then Gretzky was driven by a police escort to light the outdoor cauldron.

The first Olympics with two cauldrons was Helsinki 1952, according to Olympic historian Bill Mallon.

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