Olympic Day is a mass family-friendly event that propagates sport and a healthy lifestyle. Its mission is to introduce various sports to society, to offer an opportunity of trying them out, and to encourage communication with federations, clubs, coaches, and athletes. “Move. Learn. Discover” is the global slogan of Olympic Day that invites everyone to be inquisitive and to discover the joy of the sport.
The history of Olympic Day started in January 1948, when at the 42nd IOC Session in St Moritz, Switzerland, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) approved the idea of Olympic Day. This day commemorates the creation of the IOC and restoration of the Olympic Games during the I Olympic congress on June 23, 1894, in Sorbonne, Paris. June 23 marks the start of the modern Olympic Movement.
In Lithuania, Olympic Day was first celebrated on May 13, 1989. In the Gediminas Castle, the Olympic champion Šarūnas Marčiulionis lit a torch which then was carried in a relay through Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia until reaching Tallinn. Formerly, Olympic Day was celebrated by organizing the running of the symbolic Lithuanian Olympic mile – 1988 meters, symbolizing the year of the restoration of the Lithuanian National Olympic Committee.
In 2015, a festival of mass sports activities started taking place in Lithuania’s largest cities – Kaunas, Alytus, Šiauliai, Panevėžys, and Klaipėda.
In 2019, an attendance record was reached in Klaipėda, whereas many as 30,000 people attended the festival, tried out 100 different sports and Olympism-related activities, observed competitions, and learned about Olympic values and history. The festival featured a live performance by Monique and sports films viewings on the shore of the Baltic Sea.
The organizers encourage active participation in the festival by offering prizes. Before or on the day of the event the festival’s participants claim their Participant’s passport where they collect points by participating in various events. In the evening they can exchange those points into medals, souvenirs, and prizes.
The event is organized by the Lithuanian National Olympic Committee and the Lithuanian Olympic Fund. The municipality of the host-city, Lithuanian sports federations, and clubs help to ensure the quality of the ever-growing festival.
LTeam Winter Festival
LTeam Winter Festival is the biggest festival for winter sports enthusiasts. The Lithuanian Olympic Fund has been organizing the festival since 2014. The first LTeam Winter Festival took place in Ignalina, in 2015, 2016, and 2017 it was held in Druskininkai, in 2018 – in Jonava, and in 2019 as well as in 2020 it returned to Druskininkai.
In 2019, the family-friendly sports and entertainment festival lasted for the whole weekend and was attended by about 10,000 visitors.
LTeam Winter Festival follows the format of Olympic Day – all the participants are issued a free-of-charge Participant’s passport and participate in various sports activities to collect points which can be later exchanged into medals, souvenirs, and prizes.
The Festival’s programme features a multitude of different activities: from running, luging, and orienteering competition to contests of international sports teams’ mascots, sports film session, slalom canoeing, and performances by Lithuania’s best musicians.
Lithuanian snow volleyball championship was organized in 2020 and the winners earned the place to participate in European championships. A massive crowd came to a free concert of Saulius Prusaitis – approximately 900 people attended “Snow arena“ to party.
“I didn’t expect this festival to be this fun. There were so many interesting activities – I loved to have a chance to learn the basics of how to use a surfboard, I also attended the acroyoga workout which was held very professionally“, expressed her experience Tokyo 2020 Olympian sailor Viktorija Andrulyte.
Every year the members of LTeam show up at this festival to enjoy winter sports. You can also spot guests from other countries here too. There were participants from Belarus, Latvia, Estonia, Northern Macedonia, Portugal, Slovenia, Slovakia, Czech Republic or Poland at 2020’s event.
LTeam Conference is an event where professional athletes, coaches, leaders, and employees of teams, clubs, and federations, as well as dedicated sports fans, may gain additional information and knowledge. In this unique conference professionals of their respective fields talk about global sports market trends, share personal experience and advice.
The conference dedicated to the promotion of sport culture featured presentations covering different areas of sport: insights and experiences were shared by Olympians, sports physicians, psychologists, lawyers, communication specialists, and various discussions and interactive entertainment was abundant.
Since 2017 LTeam Conference has been organized and held by the Lithuanian National Olympic Committee and the Lithuanian Olympic Fund.
Lithuanian Sports Awards
Lithuanian Sports Awards is an annual ceremony for honoring Lithuania’s best Olympic sports athletes. During the awards ceremony, the winners of the following nominations are announced: Male Athlete of the Year, Female Athlete of the Year, Men’s Team of the Year, Women’s Team of the Year, Male Coach of the Year, Female Coach of the Year, Breakthrough of the Year, and Victory of the Year, ect.
Special awards are also given for winners of nominations Help to Athletes and Lifetime Achievements. Also, since 2017 the most popular Lithuanian athlete has been honored during the ceremony. The winner of this nomination is decided exclusively by an open public vote.
The winners of awards are chosen by representatives of Lithuanian sports organizations and the public. Athletes are nominated for their achievements from December 1 until December 1 of the following year.
Lithuania’s Best athletes:
1994 – Raimundas Mažuolis (swimming)
1995 – Remigijus Lupeikis (cycling)
1996 – Arvydas Sabonis (basketball)
1997 – Raimondas Šiugždinis (sailing)
1998 – Diana Žiliūtė (cycling)
1999 – Edita Pučinskaitė (cycling)
2000 – Virgilijus Alekna (discus throw)
2001 – Rasa Polikevičiūtė (cycling)
2002 – Raimondas Rumšas (cycling)
2003 – Šarūnas Jasikevičius (basketball)
2004 – Virgilijus Alekna (discus throw)
2005 – Virgilijus Alekna (discus throw)
2006 – Virgilijus Alekna (discus throw)
2007 – Ramūnas Šiškauskas (basketball)
2008 – Edvinas Krungolcas (modern pentathlon)
2009 – Simona Krupeckaitė (cycling)
2010 – Simona Krupeckaitė (cycling)
2011 – Laura Asadauskaitė (modern pentathlon)
2012 – Rūta Meilutytė (swimming)
2013 – Rūta Meilutytė (swimming)
2014 – Rūta Meilutytė (swimming) and Jevgenijus Šuklinas (canoeing )
2015 – Laura Asadauskaitė (modern pentathlon) and Ramūnas Navardauskas (cycling)
2016 – Simona Krupeckaitė and Aurimas Didžbalis (weightlifting)
2017 – Airinė Palšytė (high jump) and Andrius Gudžius (discus throw)
2018 – Rūta Meilutytė (swimming) and Andrius Gudžius (discus throw)
2019 – Laura Asadauskaitė (modern pentathlon) ir Danas Rapšys (swimming)
2021 – Laura Asadauskaitė (modern pentathlon) ir Mindaugas Griškonis (rowing)