Rio de Janeiro opened South America’s first-ever Olympic Games on Friday with a pared-down ceremony that put the environment to the forefront and celebrated Brazil’s rich and diverse culture.

Hampered by budget cuts enforced by an economic crisis gripping the world’s fifth-biggest country, Rio eschewed the high-end production of previous opening ceremonies yet still managed to delight a packed crowd of 78,000 at Maracana Stadium with a carnival of lights, music and dancing.

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