The 2010 Winter Olympic Games, officially known as the XXI Olympic Winter Games is a major international winter multi-sport event held in the city of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Vancouver is the province's largest city as well as Canada's third largest. The decision was made on July 2nd 2003 when the city was chosen and announced as the host city. 82 nations competed in the 7 sports divided into 86 events. Governor General Michaelle Jean declared the games open during the opening ceremony. Vancouver 2010 was the first Olympics to have the opening and closing ceremony indoors. It was also the first to have two Olympic cauldrons.
A joint project between the Vancouver Organizing Committee (VANOC) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC), it is the third Olympic games held in the nation of Canada.
To get Canadian athletes ready to compete the program, "own the podium" was put into place to help athletes step up to the challenge to get the first gold medals on Canadian soil.
For the first time, the Winter Olympics will be held by the sea and some venues, such as the Richmond Olympic Oval, are at sea level. Vancouver is also the warmest city ever to host a Winter Olympics. In February, when the Games will be held, Vancouver has an average temperature of 4.8 degrees Celsius (40.6 degrees Fahrenheit). It was also the largest city to hold the Winter Games.
Before Vancouver, Canada hosted the games twice, the first being the Montreal 1976 Summer Olympic Games and the second being the 1988 Winter Olympic Games, to which Canada did not have a single gold medal in either games. Canada smashed the record for most golds on home soil during an Olympic games with 14.
- Just before the competition started Georgian Luger Nodar Kumaritashvili was taking a practice run when his sled left the track and he hit a pole, losing his life. The Georgian team bravely entered the stadium during the opening ceremony wearing black armbands and then left immediately afterward.
- Chile bravely attends the closing ceremony despite worry for their families after a massive earthquake ripped through Chile. A small black flag was attached to the Chilian flag when their flag bearer entered BC Place Stadium.
- Canada's Joannie Rochette bravely skated herself to a figure skating bronze medal, after her mother Therese passed away only four days before. She was also one of the athletes to be awarded the Terry Fox award for her courage and was Canada's flag bearer for the closing ceremony.
- Also in the figure skating competition Kim Yun-na blew away the competition with a spectacular performance to give South Korea their first ever Figure Skating gold.
- The first North American Ice Dancers to win gold went to Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada who smashed the competition with a beautiful display of skill and talent.
- After already clinching the gold, American snowboarder Shaun White landed a spectacular "Double McTwist 1260". This is the first time a double McTwist has been landed in competition
- The first ever gold medal won on Canadian soil went to freestyle skier Alexandre Bilodeau in mens moguls.
- Canada was the first team to receive gold in both men's and women's hockey on home ice, also the first to have a gold in hockey on home ice since Lake Placid 1980
- Cayman Islands, Colombia, Ghana, Montenegro, Pakistan, Peru and Serbia all made their first ever winter Olympic appearance.
Vancouver had three main mascots, Sumi, Miga and Quatchi. The fourth mascot, Mukmuk, was meant to only be on online mascot but people fell in love with the little guy and he became more of a demi-mascot for the games.
Sumi was the major mascot for the paralympic winter games and played a major part in the paralympic opening ceremony at BC place. Sumi comes from the Salish word “Sumesh” which means "guardian spirit." He is an aboriginal spirit who wears the hat of the orca whale, flies with the wings of the thunderbird and runs with the furry legs of the blackbear. Sumi takes his home in Whistler and his favorite event is alpine skiing.
Miga also was created from the legends of the aboriginals tribes. Miga is a sea bear that lives just off the coast of Vancouver Island. Sea bears are basically part orca whale and part bear, they have the unique ability to morph between the two. She loves surfing but her favorite winter event is snowboarding.
Quatchi is a sasquatch who lives in the forests of British Columbia. The sasquatch or "big foot" is of course the legendary human like ape creature that many have claimed to have seen all over North American forests. He loves Canada's favorite game of ice hockey and wants to become a famous goalie, he's really good at it because he takes up a lot of the net!
Despite what most people think Mukmuk is not actually made to look like a beaver. He is actually made after the rare endangered Vancouver Island marmot. There is not much else known about him than that he is a friendly little guy who loves to cheer on his friends. His name comes from the Chinook Jargon word "muckamuck", meaning "food", due to his large appetite.
Canada took a very unique stand on the creation of the 2010 Olympic medals. For each of their medals they took an aboriginal artwork pattern and then took parts of the work and placed it on the front of each medals so every medal given out during the Olympics were completely unique. Each medal winning athlete also got a cloth picture of the artwork so they can find where their medal fits in. Each medal also got a few bends in it to make the medals truly different from anything given out before.
Much like the rest of the games Canada created a very unique torch to go with their games. Canada took the longest torch relay ever in Olympic history. After being lit in Olympia, Greece, it went by plane all the way Victoria BC, and then traveled across the Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut. It then traveled to Saint Johns, Newfoundland and Labrador, and then followed across Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and then finished back in Vancouver British Columbia where the two torches were lit. The indoor one at BC Place and the one down at the waterfront. In every major city in Canada, a small cauldron was lit, and there would be a major celebration before the torch continued on it's way to Vancouver. The whole torch run went from October 30, 2009 to February 12, 2010, and took a total of 106 days to complete.
The Olympic winter venues were placed all over the Vancouver area to take advantage of the wide range of land.
- BC Place Stadium (location of the opening and closing ceremonies as well as medal persentations for most events
- Canada Hockey Place, aka Rogers Arena (Formerly GM Place) (Main Ice hockey arena)
- Hillcrest Park (Curling)
- Pacific Coliseum (Figure skating and short track speedskating)
- Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Center (Media centre)
- Vancouver olympic village
University of British ColumbiaEdit
- UBC Winter sports center (secondary ice hockey arena)
- UBC Thunderbird Arena (Sledge hockey arena)
- Richmond olympic oval (long track speedskating)
- Cypress Mountain Resort (Freestyle Skiing and snowboarding)
- Whistler Olympic and paralympic village
- Whistler creekside (alpine skiing)
- Whistler Olympic park in Callaghan valley (biathlon, cross country skiing and ski jumping)
- Whistler Sliding Center (bobsled, luge and skeleton)
- Logos - A collection of logos featuring this event.
- Mascots - The official mascots of this Olympics'.
- Torch - Information about this Olympics' torch.
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