(Fort McMurray, AB – January 30, 2023) – Finally, it’s Time to Shine!

The Wood Buffalo 2023 Arctic Winter Games kicked off in spectacular fashion on Sunday evening with a special and unforgettable Opening Ceremonies presented by Bouchier at Legacy Dodge Field at Shell Place.

Postponed for almost one year due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Wood Buffalo 2023 Arctic Winter Games is the first Arctic Winter Games since 2018 and represents the 26th edition of the event.

With nearly 1,700 participants representing eight contingents from across the circumpolar North, the 2023 Arctic Winter Games features 20 sporting categories and a series of cultural events and experiences.

“After years of planning and preparation, the Games are finally here,” said Melissa Blake, Chair of the Host Society. “If the energy, celebration and friendship displayed at the Opening Ceremonies are any indication, this will truly be a week to remember. Thank you to Bouchier for its support of the Opening Ceremonies and to all of our partners, the Arctic Winter Games International Committee, AWG Board of Directors and staff, volunteers, participants, and everyone supporting the Games: This is possible because of you.”

The Opening Ceremonies was highlighted by the culmination of the Torch Relay and the lighting of the cauldron, which was done in collaboration by local Elder Lina Gallup and 2023 Arctic Winter Games official ambassador Brooke Voigt. A member of Fort McKay First Nation, Gallup is a revered and respected residential school survivor, while Voigt, from Fort McMurray, is a two-time Canadian Olympian in snowboarding and former Arctic Winter Games athlete.

Attended by thousands of participants, coaches, mission staff and Games supporters, the Opening Ceremonies also included a special performance from The Halluci Nation, the release of the official Theme Song of the 2023 Arctic Winter Games Time to Shine, as well as remarks from a series of special guests and dignitaries representing the Games stakeholders and event partners. The night was capped off by a memorable firework display that lit up the northern sky over MacDonald Island.

For more information on the Wood Buffalo 2023 Arctic Winter Games, including the complete schedule of events, please visit awg2023.org.


Media Contact – 2023 Arctic Winter Games: communications@awg2023.org

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