The early portions of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi have already begun, but Americans can catch the opening ceremony of this year's Games on NBC in primetime on the evening of Feb. 7.
The kickoffs to Olympic Games in recent history have built up a reputation of being spectacular, must-see events—this year should be no exception.
Let's break down everything you need to know about Sochi's opening ceremony.
2014 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony
Date: Feb. 7
Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
Where: Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi, Russia
While in technical terms the action has already begun, athletes, fans and spectators around the world will officially ring in the start to another Olympic Games on Feb. 7, with a sure-to-be dazzling performance.
The event is being hosted in the brand new Fisht Olympic Stadium, built for these Games as well as the 2018 World Cup. Viewers will get their first glimpse into the new building that will play host to many of the events throughout.
Fisht Olympic Stadium is slated to hold 40,000 people and will surely be packed for what is one of the biggest traditions in all of organized sports.
Fireworks are expected to light up the Russian skyline during the opening ceremony as over 3,500 fireworks will be used in the ceremony (per Yahoo! Sports).
As they typically do, NBC will host the Olympic coverage from Sochi and will air the opening ceremony to its U.S. viewers at 7:30 p.m. local time on Feb. 7. And they didn't hide their top personalities for the marquee event—Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira will be hosting.
But the television coverage and stadium don't make the opening ceremony—or the Olympics, even—special; it's the players. And, as they usually do, the athletes will take center stage.
During a portion of the broadcast, every participating nation will be recognized as they march around the outskirts of the stadium one after another.
Some nations walk around by the hundreds, while others boast only a handful of participants.
But each nation putting their differences aside for one night to march in unison together is one of the most satisfying moments of the Olympic Games for any viewer.
Each Olympic opening ceremony brings something new to the table. And Sochi is sure to be no exception as the Russians are set to put on a captivating show.
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