Flaming Winter Games breaks out at Elijah Smith

A flaming torch was passed around by students of Elijah Smith Elementary School, Tuesday afternoon. The torch passing is part of a celebration…

A flaming torch was passed around by students of Elijah Smith Elementary School, Tuesday afternoon.

The torch passing is part of a celebration of  pan-northern spirit that is heating up as the 2007 Canada Winter Games draw near.

This torch was one of three — one for each territory — that began a northern journey in Alert, Northwest Territories.

The Yukon torch was the one that visited Whitehorse. In total, the torches will visit 83 northern communities, traveling almost 100,000 kilometres in 45 days.

This one will return to Whitehorse just in time for the Canada Winter Games.

As part of the ceremony, a luncheon was held at the Nakwataku Potlatch House.

The gathering featured young Elijah Smith School Dancers, who demonstrated traditional First Nation dancing and singing.

Dorron Fox, a 17-year-old pan-North traditional and Dene Games athlete will be competing at the Canada Winter Games.

He’s ready for the Games and “can’t wait to win some medals,” he said during the luncheon.

Fox competes in many events, but his specialties are stick gambling and the snow snake.

“He’s a great athlete, one of the most dedicated,” said Dean Mastrangelo, executive director of the Yukon Aboriginal Sports Circle.

“He should be medaling in the snow snake.” 

After the luncheon, Elijah Smith students carried the caribou antler torch from the potlatch house to their school, where the students, teachers and representatives from the Vancouver Olympic Committee were waiting to greet them with applause.

John Furlong, chief executive officer of the Vancouver committee, was visiting Whitehorse and taking part in the torch ceremony to observe how the city is preparing to host the Canada Winter Games.

“To some degree we’re here out of respect … the athletes of the Canada Winter Games are the athletes that will eventually be on the Olympic team,” said Furlong.

“Some of the best Olympians have started their rise to stardom at the Canada Winter Games and gone on to Olympic teams.”

Pam Boyde, pan-North chair of the torch relay committee, gave an inspirational speech, encouraging students to get excited about the Canada Winter Games by participating in the torch relay and adopting the spirit of the Games into their hearts.

“The torch is a way for everybody in the North to touch a part of the Canada Winter Games,” said Boyde.

Once the torch was placed at the school, the children, Grades 1 through 6, sang O  Canada just as if they were medal winners at the Olympics.

Following that, Grade 5 and Grade 6 students played some of the traditional games that will be played at the Canada Winter Games.

The children danced on their knees to the beat of drums while they stick gambled against each other.

There were smiles on all of their faces.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Patti Balsillie will be running for the mayor’s seat in Whitehorse in the Oct. 21 municipal election. (Submitted)
Balsillie aims to serve as city’s mayor

Says she has the time, skill set to serve in full-time role

Mayo-Tatchun MLA Don Hutton sits on the opposition side of the legislative assembly on March 8 after announcing his resignation from the Liberal party earlier that day. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)
Don Hutton resigns from Liberal caucus; endorses NDP leadership

Hutton said his concerns about alcohol abuse and addictions have gone unaddressed

Crystal Schick/Yukon News
Calvin Delwisch poses for a photo inside his DIY sauna at Marsh Lake on Feb. 18.
Yukoners turning up the heat with unique DIY sauna builds

Do-it-yourselfers say a sauna built with salvaged materials is a great winter project

Wyatt’s World

Wyatt’s World for March 5, 2021.

Yukonomist: School competition ramps up in the Yukon

It’s common to see an upstart automaker trying to grab share from… Continue reading

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley receives his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from Public Health Nurse Angie Bartelen at the Yukon Convention Centre Clinic in Whitehorse on March 3. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
State of emergency extended for another 90 days

“Now we’re in a situation where we see the finish line.”

The Yukon government says it is working towards finding a solution for Dawson area miners who may be impacted by City of Dawson plans and regulations. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Miner expresses frustration over town plan

Designation of claims changed to future planning

Team Yukon athletes wave flags at the 2012 Arctic Winter Games opening ceremony in Whitehorse. The 2022 event in Wood Buffalo, Alta., has been postponed indefinitely. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News file)
2022 Arctic Winter Games postponed indefinitely

Wood Buffalo, Alta., Host Society committed to rescheduling at a later date

Housing construction continues in the Whistle Bend subdivision in Whitehorse on Oct. 29, 2020. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Yukon Bureau of Statistics reports rising rents for Yukoners, falling revenues for businesses

The bureau has published several reports on the rental market and businesses affected by COVID-19

Council of Yukon First Nations grand chief Peter Johnston at the Yukon Forum in Whitehorse on Feb. 14, 2019. Johnston and Highways and Public Works Minister Richard Mostyn announced changes to the implementation of the Yukon First Nations Procurement Policy on March 3. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Third phase added to procurement policy implementation

Additional time added to prep for two provisions

Crews work to clear the South Klondike Highway after an avalanche earlier this week. (Submitted)
South Klondike Highway remains closed due to avalanches

Yukon Avalanche Association recommending backcountry recreators remain vigilant

RCMP Online Crime Reporting website in Whitehorse on March 5. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Whitehorse RCMP launch online crime reporting

Both a website and Whitehorse RCMP app are now available

A man walks passed the polling place sign at city hall in Whitehorse on Oct. 18, 2018. The City of Whitehorse is preparing for a pandemic-era election this October with a number of measures proposed to address COVID-19 restrictions. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
City gets set for Oct. 21 municipal election

Elections procedures bylaw comes forward

Most Read