McDonald’s is honoring the spirit of friendship that is at the heart of the Olympic values by celebrating nearly 100 kids from around the world with a once-in-a-lifetime, and first-ever, opportunity to participate in an Opening Ceremony at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. The McDonald’s Olympic Kids will walk in the Parade of Nations at Rio’s famed Maracanã Stadium in front of 80,000 live spectators and billions of television viewers worldwide.
McDonald's Olympics Kids from 20 countries around the world, represent friendship and unity for children worldwide, which are key values of the Olympic Games. The flag bearer of each of the 207 country athlete delegations will be accompanied by a McDonald’s Olympics Kid.
In addition to walking in the Parade of Nations, the McDonald’s Olympics Kids are experiencing Olympic events and enjoying activities around Rio. Nearly 100 kids, aged 8 to 12 years old, will be participating from 20 countries around the world, including: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Costa Rica, France, Germany, Guadeloupe, Indonesia, Japan, Martinique, Mexico, Panama, Puerto Rico, South Korea, Thailand, the U.K., and the U.S.Each country held their own local promotion to select the kids to represent their respective country.
Ronald McDonald House Charities selected the McDonald's Olympics Kids from the U.S. and Canada for having overcome great adversity.
Also joining the McDonald’s Olympics Kids program are children of Olympic gold medal winners who are McDonald’s Athlete Ambassadors for the Rio 2016 Games: son of gymnasts Bart Conner and Nadia Comaneci, daughter of swimmer Dara Torres, son and daughter of soccer player Julie Foudy, daughter of swimmer Susie O’Neill, son of judo athlete Tadahiro Nomura, and daughter of volleyball player Dante Guimarães Santos do Amaral.
McDonald’s commitment to the Olympic Games began in 1968, when the company airlifted hamburgers to U.S. athletes in Grenoble, France, after they reported being homesick for McDonald’s food. Since then, the company has served its menu of choice and variety to millions of athletes, their coaches, families, and fans. Rio 2016 marks the 11th consecutive Games with McDonald’s as the official partner, serving Olympic athletes and fans at the Games.
For more on McDonald’s and other brands at the 2016 Olympics, read our feature story.