The clock is clicking down to the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games. Canada has been buzzing about these games for the past few years and now Vancouver is the final rush to make sure everything is ready as they prepare to welcome the world. Vancouver was awarded these games over 5 years ago and has been making preparations ever since. This will be the second time Canada has played host to this spectacular event.
Held every fourth year, the Winter Games are an international spectacular. This season the Games will commence in the middle of February and stretch over 16 excitement filled days. One day one will be a moving and somber opening ceremony and on day 16 will be a fun and glitzy closing ceremony. The days in between will be filled with such events as alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, figure skating, bobsled, ice hockey, ski jumping, freestyle skiing, and speed skating..
The Vancouver Olympic Games will be held in the City of Vancouver as well as a number of different places around Vancouver. Vancouver is located on the Pacific Ocean in the lower mainland portion of the province of British Columbia. The other British Columbia towns and villages that will assist in hosting the Winter Games are Richmond, Whistler, and West Vancouver.
Historically, the Winter Olympics and the Summer Olympics were held in the same year. This was the case from the first Winter Games held in France in 1924. Prior to 1924, figure skating and hockey were part of the Summer Games. The same year pairing of the Olympics continued until 1992. Since 1992, the Winter and Summer Olympics have been held in alternate even numbered years.
There have only been a select number of countries to host the Winter Olympics. As mentioned, this will be Canada’s second time to host the Winter Games. Other countries to host the Games twice have been Italy, Japan, Austria and Norway. France has hosted the Games three times while the United States has hosted the Games four times. The next Winter Games will then be hosted by Sochi, Russia in 2014, marking the first time that Russia has hosted a Winter Olympic Games.
In anticipation of the Vancouver Olympics, the Canadian Olympic Association developed a program with the lofty goal of Canadian athletes achieving more Olympic medals than ever before. This program has been called “Own the Podium” and has been in effect over the past number of years. The results of this program will be seen at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.