Presented By

Opening Ceremonies Sponsors

Meet-And-Greet Sponsor
Parade of Athletes Sponsor
Skydivers Sponsor
Healthcare Worker Tribute
National Anthem Sponsor
Fireworks Sponsor
Date & Time

Date: Friday, July 16, 2021


Gates open at 6 p.m.

Show starts at 8 p.m.

Location: Seacrest Field, Lincoln

Opening Ceremonies Program / Timeline


6 p.m. – Gates Open – Seacrest Stadium and Den Hartog Field
6:15 – 7:45 p.m. – Alex Gordon Meet-And-Greet – Den Hartog Field
7:45 – 8 p.m. – Parade of Athletes Staging – Den Hartog Field
8 p.m. – Opening Ceremonies Program – Seacrest Stadium


• Parade of Athletes
• Skydivers
• Healthcare Worker Tribute
• National Anthem
• Special Introductions
• Oath of Athletes
• Mascot Showcase
• Super Retriever Series Demo
• Cauldron Lighting
• Opening Declaration
• Fireworks

Event Details

The Opening Ceremonies take place Friday, July 16 at Seacrest Field in Lincoln.  Prior to the Ceremonies, registered CSG athletes will have the opportunity to meet the 2021 Torchlighter Alex Gordon, who retired last year following a stellar 14-year Major League Baseball career, and other 2021 sports celebrities on hand for the Games.  The Meet-And-Greet will be held from 6:15 – 7:45 p.m. on Den Hartog Field, just East of Seacrest Stadium.

Following the Meet-And-Greet athletes will line up by sport along the warning track on Den Hartog Field.  Sport signs will help athletes find their sport in the lineup.

At 8 p.m. the Ceremonies officially begins with the Parade of Athletes led by Honorary Parade Marshal Gene Haynes, recently-retired and long-time athletic director/principal of Omaha North High School. Once the Parade is complete, skydivers from the Lincoln Sport Parachute Club, including veteran flag-bearer Larry Bartlett, will make their entrance from above.  Next, athletes and guests will pay tribute to Nebraska’s healthcare workers, represented by nurses from CHI Health St. Elizabeth and the Nebraska National Guard’s Covid-19 response team. Together the workers will unfurl the giant American Flag, colors will be presented by the Nebraska National Guard Honor Guard and the Big Red Alumni Pep Band will play the national anthem.

Following the anthem and retiring of colors, CSG athletes will recite the Oath of Athletes, and several Nebraska mascots will storm the field.  After some mascot hilarity, Nebraska’s top retriever dog-and-handler teams will provide an amazing demonstration of human-animal communication as the dogs perform several blind retrieves.

The Torch will then be passed by 2020 CSG Torchligher Eric Crouch to this year’s honoree, Alex Gordon, who will light the cauldron signifying the official beginning of the 2021 Cornhusker State Games.  After the Games’ Opening Declaration, which will be made by Honorary Chairman Frank Wilber, fireworks will provide a dramatic conclusion to a spectacular celebration of sports in Nebraska.

The Opening Ceremonies, which will be televised and streamed by News Channel Nebraska, officially kicks off competition in more than 70 sports in the 37th annual Cornhusker State Games.  Most events will be held July 16-25th and officials expect more than 10,000 participants.  Those interested can find information and register at

The Ceremonies PA announcer is JP Kyhn, PA voice of Husker basketball and host of Lincoln radio station KZKX’s morning show.  Bill Schammert, 1011 news anchor will serve as the field emcee.  The Ceremonies, which are free for athletes and the general public, will be televised and streamed by News Channel Nebraska.

Meet & Greet Details

For everyone’s safety, please do not initiate personal contact with our special guests, i.e. handshakes, hugs, etc…we are still mindful of health considerations, and unfortunately, the COVID-19 virus and variants are still in our midst.

In order for all attendees to have an opportunity, all guests are allowed one signature, and to be considerate of your fellow-Nebraskans, please keep it short and sweet.

Allowable items for signing, include: A. Preferred—Free CSG Opening Ceremonies commemorative trading cards will be provided for autographs from Alex, Eric, Chuck, Jordyn, Erika and Morgan. B. You may also have your shirt or cap signed. C. ONE photo or publication (example: Royals or Huskers Game program you’ve kept for just such an opportunity). D. a baseball/softball/football you bring/provide. E. Nothing Else–No other items will be allowed for signing in the Meet-And-Greet.


Admission to Opening Ceremonies is FREE!

Gates open at 6:30 p.m.


Volunteer opportunities are available! Register HERE!

If you have any questions, please contact the Cornhusker State Games office at

Thank You to our platinum sponsors

Official Member of the

Phone: 402-471-2544

Fax: 402-413-1119

Mailing address: 
Po Box 29366
Lincoln, NE 68529

Shipping address:
3260 Folkways Blvd Suite B
Lincoln, NE 68504