By Nelson Belen, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – This Saturday (September 17th) and Sunday (September 18th), Casa Brazil, which continues to shatter attendance records, will offer visitors one last chance to visit A Tour of Brazil. The interactive exhibition allows guests to relive, through photos and video, the Rio 2016 Olympic torch’s remarkable journey across Brazil last May through August.
For the past 44 days, Casa Brazil, set up in two immense warehouses (Armazém 1 and Armazém 2) on Olympic Boulevard, has delighted almost half a million visitors with exhibitions showcasing the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes of Brazil.
The A Tour of Brazil exhibit, particularly, has proven to be a crowd favorite for the hundreds of thousands of visitors to Olympic Boulevard and Casa Brazil, as it gives guests the chance to see the beauty and diversity of the country in one unique space.
“I thought this exhibition was really great because it showed all the places through which the torch passed and many people have no idea of the wealth and beauty of the states of our country,” exclaimed carioca Roberta Gomes de Oliveira to a government agency. “I found it a great experience, imagine for a foreigner who does not know our country?”
Along with numerous photo displays and stories of the various regions throughout Brazil, the sixty-square-meter space allows visitors to experience the journey of the torch on an interactive table where guests can select an area or region to immediately access a video further highlighting the torch’s visit to that region.
Agência Terruá, the exhibit’s curator, put together the exhibit from a database of 7,500 photos and more than 440 hours of news coverage related to the Rio 2016 Olympic torch relay.
The interim Tourism Minister, Alberto Alves, in a released statement yesterday (September 15th), explained the importance of last month’s torch relay for the country’s tourism industry. “We had the opportunity to reveal to all the spectators of this great event [Rio 2016 Olympics], Brazil’s beaches, waterfalls, fields, our innovation, technology, and adventure.”
Minister Alves added, “This is the Brazil that is open to Brazilians and foreigners and we want it to increasingly become one of the most attractive tourist destinations in the world and accessible to all audiences.”
The Rio 2016 Olympic torch began its 95-day tour across Brazil in capital city Brasilia on May 3rd. During the relay, over 12,000 torchbearers carried the torch across three hundred towns culminating with its arrival at Maracanã Stadium for the Olympic opening ceremony on August 5th.
Officials also announced yesterday that Casa Brazil shattered attendance records on Sunday, September 11th, with a total of 26,500 guests. The previous record had only been set the day before, with 25,700 visiting on Saturday, September 10th. Impressively, both figures surpassed Casa Brazil’s single day attendance totals during the Rio 2016 Olympics.
“Many feared that the movement might fall during the Paralympics, but what happened was just the opposite,” asserted Casa Brazil spokesperson, Jun Yamamoto. “This proves that the visitors believe in the Olympic project, which will certainly result in a long-term legacy for the country’s tourism.”
Casa Brazil will be open this weekend, its final weekend, from 10AM to 8PM.