2016 Rio Olympics opening ceremony takeaways: Tonga, Gisele steal the show

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2016 Rio Olympics opening ceremony takeaways: Tonga, Gisele steal the show
Friday’s ceremonies were a smashing success

Colin Ward-Henninger mugshot
by Colin Ward-Henninger Aug 06, 2016 • 1 min read

The

2016 Rio Olympics officially kicked off on Friday night with the opening ceremony.

At Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, athletes, spectators and media from all over the world convened to usher in the Summer Games.

After an action-packed ceremony, the Olympic cauldron was lit by Brazilian marathon runner Vanderlei De Lima, and the games were officially commenced.

Here are a few takeaways from the ceremony:
Gisele’s still got it

The early highlight of the ceremony was when Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen walked the runway while “The Girl from Ipanema” played in the background. There was no sign of husband Tom Brady.
Brazil isn’t scared

While highlighting the history of their country, the Brazilian organizers did not shy away from the negative side of their history. Large sections of the opening ceremony were devoted to the history of slavery and the dangers of climate change.
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They also aren’t scared to claim that they were the first ones to achieve flight.
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However, the First Flight Society provided their own rebuttal to the claim.
Tonga steals the show

During a long parade of nations, Tonga spiced things up with its flag bearer. Pita Nikolas Taufatofua, an Olympian in taekwondo, showed off his oiled, muscular frame much to the delight of the crowd, the NBC announcers, and the Twittersphere.
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Tonga take over! USATSI
Brazil knows how to throw a party

Despite serious moments in the ceremony, overall it was an atmosphere of jubilation and celebration to kick off the first South American Olympics. Bright colors, dancing and singing filled the stadium throughout the ceremony.

Let the games begin.

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