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A Tourist’s Perspective on the Vancouver Games


Yesterday was my first day at the Olympics and it was amazing!  Vancouver is a beautiful host city and the BC Tourism Board http://www.hellobc.com has done an excellent job promoting the city and its gorgeous scenery.

The day started out with a photo walk around downtown taking pictures of the Olympic flame, then down to Robson Square to see the Chinese gold and silver medal pairs figure skating champions do brief performances.  Then we went to the British Columbia Media Center! And watched some snowboard half pipe and hockey on TV.

Late afternoon I headed to the Pacific Coliseum as I was fortunate enough to wrangle a ticket to the Short Track Speed Skating.  At Wednesday’s Short Track was Women’s 500M quarterfinal, semifinal, and final—yes, we did get to see the final, including flower ceremony.  In the end China won gold, and the home team, Canada won silver!  It was also Men’s 1000M and Men’s 5000M semifinal relay.  In the relay 4 teams compete at once, each with 4 guys on the ice so you can imagine it was quite crowded.  But due to a disqualification, the final will be even more crowded: 5 teams, 4 guys each!  That would be very exciting to see.

It was a fantastic day to be there as new Olympic Records were constantly being set and broken.  What you learn when watching Short Track, is its not over till its over!  You may think you’re out of the qualifying and then 2 skaters knock each other out and suddenly you’re in second place!  Even though these are fairly short distances and people are going at super high speeds, the leader of the pack can change in a heartbeat.  Fight till the end, the race doesn’t end til you cross the finish line!

If you have the opportunity, I recommend short track for the excitement and the crowd’s enthusiasm.  And if you’re Canadian, don’t forget a cowbell to cheer on the home team!

Going to this event by myself, I found the other fans to be extremely friendly and helpful. During the event, I sat near some very friendly Canadians and had a great time exploring the public transportation system with some guys from Toronto. Vancouver was clearly planning ahead for this event: although the line for the 10 Bus to go downtown was a 1/4 mile long, the city had buses coming right after each other to pick us up so I don’t think I waited more than 20minutes before I got on the bus.  Very well done, Vancouver!

Inspiring event! Great day! Awesome Olympics! Wonderful host city!
Guest Post Written by: Toffler Niemuth
Twitter: @tofflerann

Posted in Culture, Fans, Vancouver 2010, VenuesComments (3)


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