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Queen Elizabeth to open Olympic Games

3/1/2012

Queen Elizabeth is set to open the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics...

 Queen Elizabeth is set to open both the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics this summer, signaling that both events will be celebrated as great state occasions – something the British are famous for.
 
It is the first time the queen has opened the Paralympics Games, though she has often honored Paralympians for their achievements in the past. The Paralympics started in London in 1948 when injured veterans held the first disabled sport competition in archery.

Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Philip, will perform the ceremonial role at the 80,000-seat Olympic Stadium when the Olympic Games begin on July 27, and for the Paralympics Games on Aug. 29.
 
There will be venues throughout the U.K., from London to Edinburgh.  The monarch and her husband Prince Philip are planning an extensive tour of the United Kingdom during the celebrations, including visits to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Buckingham Palace will be open to Olympics visitors from June 30-July 8 and will re-open in August as is the monarch’s usual summer practice.   The celebrations in London are said to include a flotilla on the River Thames, a gala concert in front of Buckingham Palace, and a carriage procession through the streets of London following a service of Thanksgiving.
 
This year also marks the Diamond Jubilee, celebrating the Queen’s 60 years on the throne. So, if you are an Olympics fan, want to celebrate the Queen or simply hop across the pond for some fish and chips and a bottle of ale – 2012 is looking like the most exciting year to do so.