The Opening ceremony of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Friday, August 5 did not disappoint. Athletes, spectators, and the media from all over the world gathered at Maracana Stadium to begin the Summer Olympic Games.

The Opening ceremony was watched by over an estimated three billion people. NBC televised the four-hour ceremony. 

Because of Brazil's budget, people were not expecting the Opening ceremony to be as spectacular as Beijing's ceremony eight years ago or London's ceremony four years ago.

However, Brazil's ceremony left a lasting impression. Viewers enjoyed the beautiful colors of the setting as well as the music, singing, dancing and fireworks. Rio's Opening ceremony was an educational experience as viewers learned about Brazil's culture.

Brazilian's supermodel Gisele Bundchen

Supermodel Gisele Bundchen from Brazil represented her country when she walked the longest runway of her career as The Girl from Ipanema could be heard in the background. Later, she was seen dancing wildly in the audience. Her husband, Tom Brady, was not seen at the event.

Michael Phelps' first time at Opening Ceremony

Michael Phelps has participated in many Olympic Games, but this was the first time he has marched in with Team USA. That's because he was resting for his swimming competition the next day. This year, Phelps was honored to lead the largest group participating in the games. He had a big grin on his face as he led the group of 554 America competitors. The host country had only 465 athletes.

This year, Phelps was honored to lead the largest group participating in the games. He had a big grin on his face as he led the group of 554 America competitors. The host country had only 465 athletes.

Unfortunately, some people missed the entry of USA because they were expecting the team to march in much later. They marched in alphabetically according to Portugal alphabet. 

Standing ovation for refugees

It was an emotional entry when refugees marched into the stadium for the first team ever.

The ten athletes displaced from their own homes in Syria, South Sudan, Ethiopia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo were received with a warm reception and a standing ovation from the audience, including Olympic officials. 

Tonga's entry

Tonga usually has few athletes and has won only one medal in Olympic history. That was a silver medal in 1996. When Tonga's flag-bearer led his team in, he was shirtless.

Pita Nikolas Taufatofua's bare chest was shining with what seems to have been bottles of oil. The 32-year-old flag bearer had failed to make two previous Olympics. This year, he was greeted with approval from viewers. 

Lighting of the cauldron

The lighting of the cauldron indicates the end of the Opening Ceremony and the sign that the games are officially ready to begin. Brazilian marathon runner Vanderlei De Lima did the honors.

De Lima won bronze for Brazil in the marathon at the 2004 Games.  

The cauldron will remain lighted for the next 17 days while the best athletes in the world represent their countries as they strive to take home a gold medal

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