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Queen's Baton Relay
Wikipedia-Official U.S. Government Photo: National Park Service
The Queen's Baton Relay is quite similar to the Olympic Torch Relay in its essence.
In a ceremony at the Buckingham Palace the Head of the Commonwealth, HM Queen Elizabeth II, puts her 'message to the athletes' inside the baton and then gives it to the
first honorary relay runner.
In order to officially open the Games the Queen or her representative are given the baton back by the relay finalist. Then she takes the note out and reads it aloud to welcome everyone.
The Queen's Baton Relay was presented for the first time at the British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Cardiff, Wales in 1958. Its aim has become to unite the Commonwealth nations with the single message of ‘peace and harmony through sports’.