Opening Ceremonies


Date: Friday, July 20, 2018

Time: 8 p.m.

Site: Seacrest Field (7400 A St, Lincoln - View Map)

Opening Ceremonies Program
SportFest (4:30-7:15 p.m. at East High School)
Gates Open at Seacrest Field (6 p.m.)
Staging For Parade of Athletes (7:15 - 8 p.m. Northwest of Stadium)
Parade of Athletes (8 p.m.)
Skydivers (Lincoln Sport Parachute Club)
Special Introductions
Presentation of Colors (Nebraska National Guard)
National Anthem (Nebraska Brass Band)
Oath of Athletes (Molly Nance)
Freestyle BMX Exhibition (NoWear BMX Stunt Team)
Mascot Challenge
Caldron-Lighting (Mystery Torchlighter)
Opening Declaration (Dr. Rob Rhodes, Nebraska Medical Association)
Fireworks / Autographs
Prior to the Opening Ceremonies, athletes and guests are invited to enjoy SportFest from 4:30 to 7:15 p.m. in and around East High School. Attractions include the athlete meal, compliments of Arby’s of Lincoln, LinPepCo and Hiland Dairy, *Ninja Warrior Activities, Exhibitor Booths, *Eurobungee, National Guard Chopper Display, Lincoln Fire & Rescue Truck Display and an expanded Freestyle BMX  Exhibition. At 7:15 p.m., SportFest closes and athletes move to the parade-staging area in the park between East High School and Seacrest Stadium.
The Opening Ceremonies begins with the traditional parade of athletes, sponsored by BNSF Railways. Here, the stars of the show, Cornhusker State Games athletes, get rock-star treatment, entering the stadium under a fogging archway, waving commemorative parade flags in front of the grandstands to cheers and applause before taking their seats in the east stadium.  This year’s parade marshal is recently-retired Hall of Fame football coach Gene Suhr.
Skydivers from the Lincoln Sport Parachute Club then make their entrance from above, followed by the presentation of colors by the Nebraska National Guard. The Star Spangled Banner will be performed by the Nebraska Brass Band, winners of this year’s National Anthem Contest, sponsored by Amigos/Kings Classic.
Athletes will then recite the Oath of Athletes, led by Nebraska open-water swimmer Molly Nance, who earlier this year became the first woman ever to swim the St. Lucia Channel.
Then comes the NoWear BMX Stunt Team.  Headed by veteran pro-style rider and Lincoln native Karl Hinkley and having played fairs and half-time shows across the country, NoWear BMX may be best known for its growing complex near Unadilla. Professional and hobby riders from around the world have traveled to the complex, furthering its reputation as a must-ride destination in the international BMX community.
Several lovable local mascots will be on hand for the annual CSG Mascot dash.  Perennial Champion Sporty (Nebraska Sports Council) will be joined this year by lovable locals, including: ABO Joe (Community Blood Bank), Chef Buffalo (Buffalo Wings & Rings), Comet (Lincoln Stars), Runza Rex, Sub Man (Subway) and Wobbles (Sun Valley Lanes).
The shining moment of every CSG Opening Ceremonies is the caldron-lighting by a mystery athlete, which is followed by the opening declaration from this year’s Honorary Chairman Dr. Rob Rhodes, representing the Nebraska Medical Association.
The Ceremonies conclude with a rousing fireworks display, sponsored by Runza.
Veteran Lincoln baseball and radio announcer Chris Lofgreen is the PA Announcer for the Opening Ceremonies.  KOLN-KGIN anchors Kevin Sjuts, Bridget Fargen and Bill Schammert will provide commentary on the field.
Admission: Registered Cornhusker State Games Athletes—FREE via the Super Pass, which is included in the athlete packet or team box. Super Passes for non-participants, which cost $15 and include free admission to all CSG sport venues, can be purchased on site. Admission to Opening Ceremonies alone is $10 for adults, $5 for students (6-18 years), free for kids 5 and under, and can be paid on site at entrance gates. Non-athletes can also enjoy the SportFest athlete meal for $5 payable at the SportFest entrance.
*Athletes and guests can participate in Ninja Warrior Train & Play and EuroBungee for a fee.  All other SportFest attractions, include the Ninja Warrior Meet & Greet/Showcase, are free.




Snapchat: We’ve developed a cool Snapchat filter just for the Opening Ceremonies! Snap a selfie and apply the filter on Friday, July 15 from 5pm- 11pm. Save it, upload it to social media, and show your followers the excitement at the 2016 Cornhusker State Games Opening Ceremonies.




Opening Ceremonies Photos


The 30th annual Cornhusker State Games officially opened Friday with eight year-old Jack Hoffman touching off the caldron as mystery torch lighter and capping off opening ceremonies at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

Not quite tall enough to reach the bowl of the caldron, Hoffman got an assist from a pair of National Guard Soldiers who had rappelled from the building’s catwalk moments earlier.

“The purpose of the Opening Ceremonies is to inspire the athletes, and I doubt you get a more inspirational torch lighter than Jack Hoffman,” Games Executive Director Dave Mlnarik said.

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Opening Ceremonies Photos






Ortmeyer Lights Cauldron at the Opening Ceremonies of the 29th Annual Cornhusker State Games

On the eve of ice hockey’s debut in the Cornhusker State Games, 10-year NHL veteran Jed Ortmeyer was introduced as the Games’ Mystery Torchlighter at Opening Ceremonies held at Seacrest Field in Lincoln Friday.

The lighting of the caldron marked the official beginning of the 29th annual edition of the state’s annual multi-sport festival, with more than 12,000 registered to participate in more than 60 sports at venues in Lincoln, Omaha and surrounding communities. Hockey is set for a solid beginning at Ralston and McLean Arenas with 24 teams and more than 350 players registered.

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Kevin Sjuts live interview with Jed Ortmeyer

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Opening Ceremonies photos







The 2012 annual Cornhusker State Games began with a unique torch-lighting ceremony as Erika Anschutz, one of the top archers in the world, ignited the caldron with a flaming arrow. The torch-lighting capped a ceremonies complete with skydivers, fireworks, a parade of athletes and a performance by New York’s Skyriders, a trampoline acrobat duo.

Five Husker track All-Americans, including discus thrower Tyler Hitchler from Fremont, hurdler Miles Ukaoma from Maize, KS, long- and triple-jumper Chris Phipps from Patterson, NJ, Crofton native discus-thrower Morgan Wilken and the Huskers’ most recent of 77 national champions, discus-thrower Chad Wright from Kingston, Jamaica. The group also led the athletes in the sportsmanship oath earlier in the program.

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Opening Ceremonies Photos

Live Interview with Erika Anschutz

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