The official mascot of the games is Soohorong, a white tiger. In Korean folk tales, these animals embody trust, strength, and protection. According to the , the white tiger is also one of four guardian gods and protectors of peace.
The cute kids that drove the show's storyline went on a time-traveling quest of peace, with segments of the show playing out throughout the ceremony. The crossing of the buckwheat field on a raft , but they ultimately saw a future with digitally enhanced medical care and flying cars.
Since the Parade of Nations is organized by the alphabet of the host country, the delegations marched out in an unusual order for Western audiences. The Jamaican team stood out with its expert dance moves, and Audra Segree led the way as a member of the .
Pita Taufatofua reprised his viral moment in Rio by going shirtless in PyeongChang despite saying he would "be keeping nice and warm." The judo athlete qualified in cross country skiing this year.
Samsung distributed limited edition Galaxy phones worth $1,100 to all of the athletes, just in time for plenty of selfie-taking. While sanctions against Iran and North Korea for their nuclear programs almost prevented those competitors from receiving gifts, that both delegations would get phones — but North Korea wouldn't be able to take theirs home.
While the island nation often dons its trademark summer wear for the Olympics, the outfit seemed especially bold in light of temperatures in the low 30s plus winds.
At a whopping , the United States broke the record for most competitors from any nation in the history of the Olympic Winter Games. The team also includes three five-time Olympians.
There's a reason Team USA looked so hyped. While the stadium piped in a during the Parade of Nations, the United States' entrance coincided with the record-breaking viral anthem by South Korean artist Psy.
The outfits by Ralph Lauren included a set of statement-making suede mittens that the athletes clearly got a kick out of. Their big parkas also featured built-in warmers to keep the marchers toasty.
With the severe cold somewhat restricting what athletes could wear, most countries opted for plain parkas and snow pants. Finland's multi-patterned jackets — with different colors for men and women — stood out as one of the most unique outfits.
While cameras caught the gold medalist walking in PyeongChang Olympic Stadium, she apparently didn't stay long. According to a post on the , she left before the festivities ended. "Back on the bus ... knee doesn't like standing like that," she captioned the pic.
As part of sanctions against Russia for systematic doping in previous Olympics, the IOC had athletes march in generic outfits: gray coats, jeans, and white scarves embroidered with a simple logo. A volunteer from the carried the Olympic flag while leading the delegation around the arena.
The Americans weren't the only ones sporting unusual gloves. The Ukrainians wore blue from head to toe, with the exception of the embroidered sunflowers — the — on their mittens.
As part of the North and South Korea marched under one flag during the Parade of Nations. South Korean bobsledder Won Yun-jong and North Korean ice hockey player Hwang Chung-gum shared the role of holding the Korean unification flag.
In a huge symbolic moment, South Korean President Moon Jae-in (bottom left) welcomed Kim Jong Un's sister Kim Yo Jong (top left) as the Korean athletes entered the stadium. Japanese President Shinzo Abe is seen looking on (bottom right).
Thomas Bach, a former fencing Olympic champion, told athletes they would only cherish memories of a "truth and worthy Olympian" if they "respect the rules and stay clean."
Impersonators of the American president and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un were escorted out of the ceremony. Of course, the actual Mike Pence and his wife Karen Pence attended the event on behalf of the president as previously announced.
If you're not into K-pop, you might not realize the quarter performing John Lennon's famous peace anthem consisted of : Ha Hyun-woo, Jeon In-kwon, Lee Eun-mi, and Ahn Ji Young. Ha Hyun-woo, 36, is the lead singer of rock band Guckkasten. Jeon In-Kwon, 63, sings for Korean band Deulgookhwa. Lee Eun-mi is a 51-year-old solo artist and Ahn Ji Young, 22, is part of the K-pop duo Bolbbalgan4.
The crew of kids released a dove-shaped balloon following the ballad. The traditional peace symbol is a longtime part of the games, but the Olympics hasn't used live birds since the 1988 Seoul Summer Olympics, when a group of birds met an unfortunate fate in the Olympic cauldron.
The athletes came from the women's ice hockey team, the only joint team North and South Korea are fielding. South Korean Park Jong-ah and North Korean player Jong Su-hyon climbed a massive set of stairs as part of the relay — earning praise from for the impressive feat.
The iconic South Korean figure skater Yuna Kim (or Kim Yuna, in the eastern name order) retired four years ago after her last Olympics, ending an essentially perfect career. She in all her years of competition, highlighted with a gold in Vancouver and silver in Sochi. South Korea gave her the honor of lighting the Olympic cauldron, which she did after showing off some of her moves.
Here's a look at how Summer Olympics fashion has evolved since 1896.