What may be missing at the 2020 (Olympic Games

Click on photos to enlarge

At every Olympics, away from the hordes of cheering spectators and the athletes competing for medals, pin enthusiasts lay out dozens of badges on corkboards or soft cloth in hopes of making a trade. But with overseas spectators banned and delegations asked to stay in a safe coronavirus “bubble”, Tokyo 2020 will be different.

The tradition of trading in the metal keepsakes that represent various sports, cities or competing countries has been around since the early 20th century when athletes and sports officials first swapped their lapel pins as a sign of friendship.

Here are samples of 2020 Pins being traded around the world.

Short History

  • Olympic pin trading is as much a part of the Olympics as the sports themselves.
  • Olympic pins date back to the first Summer Games in Athens in 1896.
  • Everyone from athletes to spectators to journalists all take part in the pin trading tradition.
  • Knowledgeable pin traders said the most coveted pin from the London 2012 Olympics was one that featured a tiny Pikachu.

The pins, about the size of a coin, are these days mostly produced by media and sponsors and given to their staff. The rarest can fetch hundreds of dollars on auction websites.

Here are some sets that are part of our family’s collection. I snuck in a World Series set just happen to have Boston pin.

Author: thom bradley

I am an educator who has worked in Woodstock NY, Rhinebeck NY, Salisbury CT and who has lived in Rhinebeck, Wilmington NC and New York City. I have been interested in photography since the '60s. I enjoy walking as a hobby and have taken quite a few pictures during these strolls. I share some of these adventures on thombradley.org or www.thombradley.wordpress.com. I

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