Treasures in miniature: The exchange of pins at the Pan American Village

Workers, volunteers, technical officials, Chefs de Mission, and athletes, all in their uniforms show with pride this emblem. They also exchange them, transcending linguistic barriers and unifying people.

It is said that countries with smaller delegations are the most valued. The main pin, of course, is the Fiu one, the official mascot of the Pan American and Parapan American Games. 

Something worthy of framing happens on the walkway that connects with the athlete's apartments. Two Argentinians and one Colombian, next to the freestanding logo of Panam Sports, exchange pins. Even though they didn’t know each other, they saw the pendants of their accreditations and intercepted each other.

Culture, experience, and camaraderie come together in this hand-to-hand transfer. “It’s something historical because then the years will pass, we will look at the pins and we will remember what we lived,'' mentions Natalia Veas to the Argentinean delegation of cycling.

"I gave this pin to Natalia, which has a coastal hat symbol that comes from the region of the Caribbean Sea, it accompanied us in the opening ceremony," expressed Fernando Farfán from Colombia.

Natalia Veas, Fernando Farfán, and Daniel Capella (Photo: Santiago 2023).

"We look at what pin the other person has and what country they are from. And that's how we meet, from the exchange of pins. The idea is to exchange one from every nation. Some are more difficult because they have fewer participants, but these are the most valued," explains the Argentinean Daniel Capella.

Who walks through the Pan American Village, will find people with up to two lanyards full of pins hanging from their necks. How many kilograms can a cervical stand? We don't know, but even the police dogs have these badges.

Even the police dogs have pins (Photo: Santiago 2023). 

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