Athletes excited to return home but sad to see Canada Games experience end
© Guardian photo by Jason Malloy
Myriam Cyr waves her Prince Edward Island flag proudly at the Canada Games in Sherbrooke, Que., on Saturday night. The Evangeline resident competed in athletics.
Nicholas Tanton had mixed emotions after arriving home Sunday from the Canada Games in Sherbrooke, Que.
“It’s good to be home. It will be nice to sleep in your own bed,” he said after arriving at the Charlottetown Airport. “It’s also a bit sad. You’re taking a break from the sport you love.”
The 17-year-old Summerside resident ran the 4x100-metre relay and competed in the long jump and the triple jump.
The country’s largest multi-sport competition ran from Aug. 2 to 17 with the events split into one of the two weeks.
“It seemed like it might be a long week when we first got there, but now looking back on it, you just wonder where the time went,” Tanton said. “I really enjoyed it.”
Prince Edward Island won two silver medals in wrestling on Thursday, Aug. 8. Summerside’s Hannah Taylor and Kingston’s Lorena Ellis came second in their respective weight classes. There were also numerous personal bests and team accomplishments set during the Games.
“Team P.E.I. athletes, coaches and managers did an excellent job of representing our province at the 2013 Canada Games,” said chef de mission Francois Caron. “I had the great privilege of watching many of our athletes compete against the best in Canada and witnessed first hand fantastic displays of athleticism and sportsmanship.”
Taylor carried the flag into the opening ceremonies and kayaker Brady McKenna the closing.
“To be the first one to walk into the whole venue is something I will never forget,” McKenna said Sunday before leaving Quebec Sunday morning. “It was a really good closing ceremony.”
The 21-year-old Cardigan native competed in four events during the week. He was fifth in the K1 5,000 metres, seventh in the K1 500 and 1,000 metres and eighth in the K1 200 metres.
“It’s been a really good week don’t get me wrong, but it will be nice to get back home and situated with friends and family,” McKenna said.
He has two weeks of work remaining before he heads back to Halifax for the second year of his pharmacy program at Dalhousie University.
Saturday evening's ceremony included an array of fireworks, music and speeches from dignitaries at Parc Jacques-Cartier along the city’s waterfront.
After the ceremony many of the athletes swapped their provincial clothing with counterparts from across the country. It is just one of the ways athletes get to meet people from throughout Canada during the Games.
“I think all our participants will leave Sherbrooke with memories that will last a lifetime,” Caron said. “The host society did a fantastic job of organizing these Games and made us all feel welcome in their community.”
The next Games will be held in the winter of 2015 in Prince George with the next summer event set for 2017 in Winnipeg.