This coming Saturday, Toronto, Canada will officially open the 2017 Invictus Games. As a Canadian and Deputy Editor of Royal Central, I am fortunate to be heading to the city to cover the events, but am very surprised that there is less attention on the games.
On Monday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Prime Minister Theresa May started their own unofficial countdown to the games by visiting some of the athletes in Toronto. In my eyes, this is too little, too late.
Royal Central commented on the lack of promotion surrounding the games that took place at Disney World, Orlando, Florida last year, although even with the apparent lack there was still more than currently going on in Canada.
Easily the biggest promotion for the games last year were the videos between former President Obama challenging the British to bring it on that resulted in a response from the game’s Patron, Prince Harry and none other than Her Majesty The Queen. The viral videos shot the games in the limelight and the rest was history.
This year is another story, apart from a few posters around the city and the odd newspaper article, no one is talking about it. Here on the opposite coast, most people don’t even know what the games are despite a national flag tour that hardly made it to the headlines.
As of writing this, there is no shortage of tickets up for sale for the opening ceremony on Saturday, the closing ceremony is sold out. Thank goodness for that! An event that should be getting so much attention needs it, sadly I feel that most of those are just in it for the music lineup.
Out of the 14 ticketed sporting events (some are free to the public), only two are sold out.
Last time around, only a handful of the British media made it across the pond to cover the events. I have heard that more are planning on coming this time around, yet my guess is that it could be due to the fact that Meghan Markle, the actress and humanitarian dating the prince, is expected to show at some point or another.
Time isn’t out yet, the world’s media could pull together as a collaboration and broadcast the games like never before. I just hope it isn’t with empty seat behind the athletes that so deserve the full force of the crowd supporting them.