CHERKESSK, January 27, /ITAR-TASS/. The Karachai-Cherkessia Republic (KCR) will greet the Olympic Torch which will be brought to the republic by helicopter from Makhachkala. A Torch welcoming ceremony will take place at the Nart Stadium in the Green Island Park here, an official at the Republican Ministry of Sports and Tourism told Itar-Tass.
"The relay will involve 16 torchbearers -- prominent sportsmen and coaches of the republic, as well as schoolchildren -- the winners of all-Russia academic and sports competitions. The torchbearers represent the ethnic diversity of the KCR. They are eminent Masters of Sports and coaches, many-time winners of world-level competitions, and young boys who, we hope, in prospect will actively join the Olympic movement," Minister Rasul Chotchayev said.
The torchbearers, succeeding one another, will carry the Olympic Torch about the stadium. The Olympic Flam Bowl lighting ceremony is to begin at 13:50, Moscow time. A festive cultural and entertainment programme has been prepared for participants and guests of the large-scale sports event to include a choreographic composition "Our (Mount) Elbrus will Inspire the Hearts of the Peoples" and a vocal-and-choreography composition "Sochi-2014". The concert at the Nart Stadium will involve about 1,000 performers, schoolchildren and students.The event is to be covered by 50 media people. The concert will be broadcast live and projected onto a large screen installed at the stadium.
"A launch of the balloons representing the mascots of the XXII Olympic Games -- a leopard, a bear, and a hare -- into the air will be the culmination of the performance,"organizers say.
From Cherkessk, the Olympic Torch will be brought to the Chechen Republic.