A local has been awarded a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Brittany Jones, born and raised in Golden and currently attending college in New York, has won a Coca-Cola sponsored contest to become a torchbearer of the Olympic Flame.
By winning the contest, Jones will join 12,000 other Olympic torchbearers carrying the flame along its 45,000 kilometre journey.
Jones says she was searching online to purchase tickets to the figure skating events at the Olympics when a pop-up from Coca-Cola appeared on her screen. She filled out the application and answered questions why she would be a good candidate to carry the torch. Afterwards, she received a notice that she had won.
“I was in my dorm room at college with some friends when I opened an email and there it was. My friends and I were very excited and I called my parents right away to let them know. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity.”
Jones says she will take an extended Christmas holiday to carry the torch in Castlegar on January 24.
“January 24 will be a great day to say, ‘I am proud to be Canadian.’ It will also give me an opportunity to show support for our country and our athletes.”
According to the contest rules, Coca-Cola selects torchbearers who embody the spirit of the Olympic Games – people who live actively, protect the environment and create a more positive reality.
Jones meets the criteria because of her extensive sports history and commitment to volunteerism.
“I was a figure skater for 13 years with the Golden Figure Skating Club. I coached for some of these years and I have my professional qualifications for coaching figure skating. It’s my dream to eventually have my own club somewhere.”
Jones plays a variety of sports, including basketball, softball and soccer. She will be graduating this year from North Country College with a degree in Sports and Events Management. She is also a Student Trustee and a Residential Assistant at college.
“I’m a busy girl. I’ve always kept busy with sports, volunteering and youth groups and try to make positive contributions to the community. I balance my school work, sports and volunteerism all at the same time.”
Jones’ good fortune extends beyond winning the honour to be a torchbearer for the Olympics. She was also recently nominated by her school to be a Winter Carnival Princess.
“Each year our college has a Winter Carnival event with a neighbouring school called Paul Smith College, 15 minutes away. The two schools alternate nominating a prince and a princess for the event. I was fortunate to be nominated this year’s princess.”
After her memorable torchbearing day, Jones will be returning to New York.
“I’ll be watching from the States, but cheering for my home country Canada.”