The first ever Flame Relay in history will start next Sunday, 30 June in Paris.
With the Opening Ceremony of the Deaflympics scheduled for 26 July, the Deaf-lympics flame relay will start a month beforehand in Paris, home of the Jeux du Silence in 1924, the first international deaf sports competition.
The flame will then be carried by cyclists, in miner’s lamps from France to Sofia, Bulgaria in time for the Deaflympics opening ceremony.
By linking the creation of the Deaflympics in Paris, in 1924, with the present in Sofia 2013, the flame relay will celebrate the proud traditions of strength and self-sufficiency that deaf competitions have provided the deaf community. The arrival of the flame at the opening ceremony will inspire the athletes on the eve of their biggest competitions.
The choice of bicycle is practical and philosophical: practical because it allows athletes to cover great distances, philosophical because a lack of safe bicycle lanes in many cities is a real barrier to cycling participation among deaf people. Furthermore the founder of the Deaflympics, Eurgene Rubens-Alcais was a competitive cyclist. Cycling has been part of the Deaflmypics since the very first Games.
Visit the Sofia 2013 website to read more about the Flame Relay and the journey it will take from Paris to Sofia.