As we surpass the six-month mark to next summer’s Games, the heat is still a hot topic as organizers scramble to find alternative solutions. On a different note, tickets for the 2020 Games will go on sale worldwide come the month of May. Here’s the latest on those topics and much more in an all-new Olympic Update:
TICKETS FOR TOKYO OLYMPICS TO GO ON SALE WORLDWIDE COME MAY
Per Japan Today, the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee said Feb. 12 that Olympic tickets will be made available to people living outside Japan starting in mid-May.
Spectators looking to travel to Japan for this summer’s Games kicking off July 24 will be able to purchase tickets from the official ticketing websites or from authorized resellers. The exact date has yet to be determined.
The tickets will be made available to all on a first-come, first-served basis online as well as over the counter at ticketing booths across Tokyo. Nonresidents of Japan can also purchase tickets at the ticketing booths.
Some 4.48 million tickets have already been sold to Japanese residents in the first two phases of the domestic Olympic ticket lottery. Organizers have not disclosed the total amount of tickets available, estimated to be over 9 million.
SNOW SHORTAGE THREATENS TOKYO GAMES TEMPERATURE CONTROL MEASURES
Japan’s news service Kyodo reported that the Tokyo Olympics face a lengthening list of concerns as the clock ticks down to the opening ceremony — a bid bribery scandal, dangerous summer heat, transport congestion, and a potentially catastrophic coronavirus outbreak -but a lack of snowfall is an unexpected addition.
Last Sept. we reported that organizers were testing measures such as a specially designed main stadium that is supposed to channel cooler air across spectators and onto the track, water mist towers, ice packs, or shaded areas to provide relief to spectators lining up outside venues.
Other plans included toying with the idea of deploying artificial snow-making machines to sprinkle spectators in the hopes of counteracting high humidity and expected scorching temperatures during next year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games.
However, plans to transport snow from Minamiuonuma in Japan’s north-central Niigata Prefecture, a skiing and snowboarding resort famous for its deep powder snow, to Tokyo are under threat because of a record shortage in snowfalls.
FEMALE ATHLETE TO LAUNCH TORCH RELAY FOR THE FIRST TIME
Per the Associated Press, for the first time, a woman has been chosen to launch the torch relay for the 2020 Tokyo Games at the birthplace of the ancient Olympics in Greece.
Greece’s Olympic Committee said it has picked Rio de Janeiro shooting gold medalist Anna Korakaki as the first torchbearer following the flame-lighting ceremony in Ancient Olympia on March 12.
The carefully-choreographed ceremony is led by an actress posing as an ancient Greek priestess who lights the flame using a bowl-shaped mirror to focus the heat of the sun’s rays on her torch. She will then pass it on to Korakaki.
FLAME FESTIVAL DETAILS UNVEILED
The Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee has unveiled details of the Flame Festivals with 200 days to go until the beginning of the Paralympic Games on Aug. 25
They will be held between Aug. 13 through the 17 in 43 of Japan’s 47 prefectures and from 18-21 August in the four prefectures co-hosting Paralympic events during the Paralympic Torch Relay.
Each Flame Festival will incorporate a lighting ceremony, a departure ceremony, visits of the Flame to local sightseeing spots and, in the case of the four prefectures hosting events, a torch relay.
Flame Festivals will be held in historic locations and local community spots such as the Peace Memorial Park in Okinawa, M-WAVE in Nagano and Yokohama’s famous red brick warehouse district.
MOBILE MOSQUES TO PROVIDE PRAYING SPACE FOR MUSLIM ATHLETES
Per the Evening Standard, Mobile Mosques will be used at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo to help against a severe lack of appropriate prayer space.
With thousands of Muslim athletes, officials and supporters arriving in the Japanese capital this summer, prayer space is said to be severely lacking in hotels and public areas, while some of the event venues themselves may not house a designated space.
The Yasu Project is behind the scheme where trucks fitted with a fully-equipped 516-square-feet prayer room will provide the necessary space.