Coca-Cola unveils Red Ribbon Panel to help recommend Vancouver 2010 Olympic torchbearers



    Vancouver teenager named first Olympic Torchbearer by Coca-Cola

    TORONTO, Jan. 19 /CNW/ - Coca-Cola Canada today announced the creation of
a Red Ribbon Panel to make recommendations on candidates hoping to be
torchbearers in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay.
    Coca-Cola also revealed the first person selected to be a Coca-Cola
torchbearer: 18-year-old Patricia Moreno of Vancouver. Her leadership role in
the community through programs such as MoreSports, a youth sports program, and
her commitment to an active lifestyle clearly represent the Olympic values,
making her an ideal Olympic Torchbearer.
    The panel is comprised of the following health, wellness and
environmental organizations: the Canadian Diabetes Association, the Canadian
Society for Exercise Physiology, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada,
ParticipACTION, WWF-Canada and the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010
Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC). Dr. K. Kellie Leitch, Chief,
Paediatric Surgery, Children's Hospital, London, is also serving on the panel.
    The panel members will be looking for inspirational, everyday Canadians
with unique stories about their dedication, decisions and deeds in becoming
more physically active and environmentally conscious, as well as in
influencing others in their communities to follow their examples.
    "It is about inspiring Canadians to make even a small difference in their
lives by having a more active or environmentally sustainable lifestyle," said
David Moran, Director of Public Affairs and Communications at Coca-Cola
Canada.
    The nomination process via www.iCoke.ca will be conducted in two stages.
First, lucky Canadians will be identified by a random draw in May 2009 from
the millions of expected applicants. Then, moving beyond the luck-of-the-draw,
these nominees will be invited to submit a short story about how they "Live
Olympic."
    In their "Live Olympic" stories, Canadians will share personal
experiences, achievements and benefits of "Living Active" and "Living Green."
The panel will recommend individuals with exceptional submissions for
selection as Olympic Torchbearers.
    To help evaluate the stories focused on active, healthy living, the panel
will refer to Canada's Physical Activity Guide produced by the Public Health
Agency of Canada and the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology.
    "We're so excited by the approach that Coca-Cola has developed for the
2010 Olympic Torch Relay," said Andrea Shaw, Vice President of Sponsorship
Sales and Marketing at VANOC. "It captures the spirit and the principles of
the Olympic Movement by recognizing people for their initiative, their effort
and their accomplishments. Canadians in every corner of the country have the
chance to carry the Olympic Flame and create a personal and lasting Olympic
experience."
    "This is going to be such a cool experience. Being fit and healthy is an
important part of who I am," said Moreno. "With all my friends and family -
and even all of Canada - watching, it will be one of the most amazing and
proud moments of my life."
    Coca-Cola understands the critical importance of physical fitness and
environmental stewardship, as well as the impact both can have on quality of
life, communities and society. So, through the 2010 Olympic Torch Relay,
Coca-Cola wants to focus attention on these issues.Do you know someone who
Lives Olympic every day? Share this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity with
friends, family, and anyone you think should carry the Olympic Flame! You
can't submit their names - they've got to step up and nominate themselves.
    "Today, one in two Canadian adults is overweight, with one in seven
adults being obese," said Dr. K. Kellie Leitch, Chief, Paediatric Surgery,
Children's Hospital, London. "Canadians need to exercise. I'd like to commend
Coca-Cola for using the power of the Olympic Flame to inspire Canadians to
lead more active lifestyles."

    Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay

    Coca-Cola is inviting Canadians to nominate themselves for the chance to
carry the Olympic Flame through iCoke.ca and sogoactive.com, a national youth
active living program presented by Coca-Cola in collaboration with
ParticipACTION.
    The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay route will be the longest domestic
torch relay in Olympic history. Beginning its 106-day journey in Victoria,
B.C. on October 30, 2009, the Olympic Flame will travel some 45,000 km and
visit more than 1,000 communities and points of interest across the country.
On February 12, 2010, it arrives in Vancouver to light the Olympic Cauldron
during the dramatic Opening Ceremony before a global audience of billions.
    The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay marks the seventh time Coca-Cola
has served as a Presenting Partner of the Olympic Torch Relay, providing
Coca-Cola with an opportunity to share the Olympic experience with communities
across Canada.

    Coca-Cola and the Olympic Movement

    The Coca-Cola Company has been associated with the Olympic Games since
1928 and is the longest continuous corporate supporter of the Olympic
Movement. Through the Olympic Games, Coca-Cola encourages people to create
their own path of "positivity" in everyday life by believing that anything is
possible. The Company's sponsorship supports National Olympic Committees in
more than 200 countries to help athletes train and compete. The Coca-Cola
Company is the exclusive nonalcoholic beverage provider to the Olympic Games
through 2020.

    Coca-Cola Canada

    The Coca-Cola Company is the world's largest beverage company. In Canada,
the Company is represented by its subsidiary, Coca-Cola Ltd. (Coca-Cola
Canada). Coca-Cola is Canada's largest beverage company. Coca-Cola Canada
markets three of Canada's top nonalcoholic sparkling beverage brands,
Coca-Cola, Diet Coke and Sprite, and the leading ready-to-drink tea: Nestea.
In addition, our subsidiary is the largest juice and juice drinks company with
Minute Maid, Five Alive and Fruitopia. The Company also markets DASANI,
PowerAde and other hot and cold beverages.
    For more information about Coca-Cola Canada, please visit our website at
www.cocacola.ca or our parent company's website at
www.thecoca-colacompany.com.

    
    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at http://photos.newswire.ca.
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/
    





For further information:

For further information: Media inquiries: Lena Beyer, Hill & Knowlton
Canada, (416) 413-4759, lena.beyer@hillandknowlton.ca; Jen Koster, Hill &
Knowlton Canada, (416) 413-4615, jen.koster@hillandknowlton.ca

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