Tag Archive | "wintergames"

A 10 Day Summary…


I’ve been quite fortunate in getting tickets to Olympic events here at the Vancouver 2010 Games! I’ve been lucky enough to acquire tickets to several events, all at face value. Events I’ve seen include speed skating at the Olympic Oval, men’s hockey at Canada Hockey Place, and women’s hockey at Thunderbird Stadium at UBC. I’ve also been to a Victory Ceremony and to the Molson Canadian Hockey House twice to watch hockey games there.

The best part about all of these opportunities for me is that I am able to take  photos of once in a lifetime events in our beautiful city!

Here are some of those images to give you a taste of my 2010 Olympics experiences:

Speed Skating:

On February 13th, after winning tickets in the Holland Heineken House ticket lottery for Dutch citizens, I went to my first speed skating event. It was unbelievable! The energy in the Richmond Oval was electrifying! And the fact that Holland’s Sven Kramer won Gold, made it that much better!

Men's 5000m Speed Skating

Men's 5000m Speed Skating

Men's 5000m Speed Skating

Gold Medalist, Sven Kramer of the Netherlands.

Sven Kramer, 5000M Gold Medal Speed Skater

Victory Ceremony:

The first gold medal for Canada was awarded to Alex Bilodeau on February 15th. I was at the medal ceremony to see it happen!

Feb 15 Olympic Victory Ceremony

Feb 15 Olympic Victory Ceremony

Feb 15 Olympic Victory Ceremony\

Molson Canadian Hockey House:

On February 15th, Tom Cochrane played at the Molson Canadian Hockey House. Guests to his stage included Tyler Stewart of the Barenaked Ladies, and Donald Sutherland. It was an amazing show and the House was full of energy and excitement! A super fun time! If you have a chance to watch a game at the Molson Canadian Hockey House, take it! Included in the FanZone ticket is entrance, food, and non-alcoholic beverages. Beer is $7.50 tax and tip included.

Tom Cochrane at Molson Hockey House

Tom Cochrane at Molson Hockey House

Tom Cochrane at Molson Hockey House

Molson Hockey House

Men’s Hockey:

I was at the USA vs Norway game on February 18th. We had seats right behind the photographers’ pit and I was able to sneak into the photographers area for about 20 minutes in the second period! It was amazing to be so close to the action and having the players bang up against the glass right in front of me! Here are some of the shots from that game.

USA - Norway Olympic Hockey Game

USA - Norway Olympic Hockey Game

USA - Norway Olympic Hockey Game

USA - Norway Olympic Hockey Game

Women’s Hockey:

On February 22nd, the Swiss played the Russians in Women’s Hockey at Thunderbird Stadium out at UBC. After a well-matched game, a few injuries, overtime and a shootout, the Swiss were victorious, winning 4th place in the 2010 Olympic standings! Congratulations Switzerland!

Women's Hockey: SUI - RUS

Women's Hockey: SUI - RUS

Women's Hockey: SUI - RUS

Women's Hockey: SUI - RUS

Women's Hockey: SUI - RUS

Believe it or not, there are still tickets available for upcoming events! We are into the final week of the Games and your final chances to see some awesome Olympic athletes in action! Try your luck for tickets at the Vancouver 2010 Fan to Fan site, Craigslist, or even right outside the venues from people trying to simply sell extra tickets at face value because they are unable to attend the event. It doesn’t always have to be pricey!A 10 Day

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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

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Alexandre Bilodeau Press Conference


After winning the first Canadian gold medal on home turf freestyle moguls skier Alex Bilodeau had a press conference this morning which I sat in on at the BC International Media Centre.


Photo credit: John Biehler on Flickr / 2010.JohnBiehler.com

The very humble Bilodeau replied in both French and English, offering much praise to the Own the Podium program, his family (in particular his brother), and his fellow athletes. “This extraordinary effort does not come in isolation,” said Peter Judge, CEO of the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association. “First and foremost we are thanking Canada.”


Photo credit: John Biehler on Flickr / 2010.JohnBiehler.com

Running on 3 hours of sleep after many media meetings, appearances and television spots in the last 18 hours, Bilodeau did a great job of even addresses tough questions from press about judging at sporting events like his. “The only thing I can control is my performance,” he noted.

When asked what his coach’s last words of wisdom were before he went down his medal-winning run he simply replied, “I said to him, ‘thank you’.”


Photo credit: John Biehler on Flickr / 2010.JohnBiehler.com

With many more press conferences, interviews, and photo ops on his horizon Bilodeau is ultimately looking forward to seeing his family tonight. He added, “for me it’s just the beginning of a great party & all of Canada is invited.”

Submitted by Rebecca Bollwitt

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Austria’s Passive House


The Austria House is a uniquie structure not only to Whistler, but to all of Canada. The Austrians have built what is called a Passive House to house their delagates and media crews during the 2010 Winter Games. It it the first house of its kind in Whistler and the first registered passive house in all of Canada.

What is a Passive House?

“A passive house is a building which is warm and cozy in winter and comfortably cool in summer. The construction is air- and windproof, thermal bridge free, the thermal insulation is particularly good, and it has also a heat recovery system and disc glazing. The construction of a passive house is very compact and if possible south facing. These houses use up to 90% less energy than conventional constructions, and expend a minimum amount of energy. Passive houses are constructed according to state-of-the-art building physics: they are airtight, particularly well insulated and use natural resources like sunlight and terrestrial heat for energy generation and calorific requirements. A passive house is the most intelligent answer to the difficult situation in the global energy sector. Due to the passive house’s minimal need for fossil fuels, it has its share in reducing CO2 emissions globally and therefore also prevents damage to our climate.

The passive house is a substantial development for the protection of our future and our living environment from both an ecological and economic point of view.”
(courtesy of http://www.oesterreichhaus.at)

Once the Games have passed, the Austrian government, Resort Municipality of Whistler and Whistler Blackcomb Foundation will leave a lasting legacy by giving this passive house back to the community. The excited new tenants, the Whistler Off Road Cycling Association (WORCA), are looking forward to having the opportunity to make their home here.

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Preparing the City for the World


Vancity is buzzing with activities in preparation and anticipation for the coming Winter Games.

In 22 days, Vancouver will host the world with Glowing hearts!

Flags and banners are starting to appear in all corners of the city.

Olympics flags popping up around the city Olympics flags popping up around the city

VANOC venue access tents (aka security check points) are being erected, these can be found just on the west side of BC Place, one of the main entrance for the 2010 Opening and Closing Ceremonies as well as for the Nightly Victory Ceremonies.

The tents are going up!

Deliveries are arriving, as seen here on Pacific Avenue, across from BC Place.

Deliveries being delivered

Fan gathering places are starting to pop up all over the city. Two examples seen here at Library Square on Georgia and Homer as well as at the Vancouver Art Gallery on Robson and Hornby.

Viewing area at Homer and Georgia

Vancouver Art Gallery viewing area

Roads are being closed all over the city, these photos taken around GM Place.

Accredited access only

Abbott Street closed at GM Place Abbott Street closed at GM Place

Games sponsors are making themselves known as they manifest themselves on the sides of entire buildings and on various billboards. This one partially completed can be seen from the corner of Hornby and Georgia.

Buildings being covered in ads

Fences are going up and security is starting to tighten, as you can see here at GM Place, just outside the Costco entrance.

Security fences at GM Place

GM’s fleet of sponsored vehicles is ready to crawl the city.

GM sponsored vehicles

Stages are being built for upcoming entertainment acts. This one is found beside the skating rink at Robson Square.

Stage being built at Robson Square

And of course we have the Vancouver Police Department roaming the streets on horseback!

Vancouver Mounted Police on Mooseback?

With three weeks remaining before the world visits our beautiful city, I’m sure we will continue to see the city transform for this exciting world event!

Make sure you start planning, this is the perfect time to get your game plan sorted before the storm hits Vancouver… Plan your movement and your schedule wisely, it will be wild…

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Canada Hockey Place – aka GM Place


Officially opening its doors on September 21, 1995, General Motors Place has become symbolic of Vancouver’s proud identity, serving as the city’s ambassador and host to the world of sports and entertainment.

A staple of downtown Vancouver, General Motors Place is one of the premier sports and entertainment facilities in all of North America. Highly praised for its comfortable seating and superior sightlines, visitor hospitality lies at the heart of this 475,000 sq. ft. building.

Home to the Vancouver Canucks of the National Hockey League, General Motors Place has hosted numerous national and international events over the years, as well as welcomed a countless number of world renowned personalities including former US President Bill Clinton, HRH Queen Elizabeth II, and His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

Serving as the primary venue for ice hockey in 2010 at the XXI Winter Olympic Games, General Motors Place will once again be front and center as the eyes of the world will be focused on watching Canada attempt to win Olympic Hockey Gold for the first time ever on home ice.

Since its inception as the leading entertainment venue in British Columbia, General Motors Place has welcomed over 15 million visitors through its doors!

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Winter Games Sponsors


With 24 days remaining on the countdown clock today, the city is quickly filling up with Winter Games sponsored advertising. Here are a few examples I captured on a short downtown photowalk this afternoon.

One sponsor has taken over two sides of the TD Building on the corner of Howe and Georgia. On the other corner we see the city’s patriotism, while we wait for the clock to count down the few remaining days until the festivities begin.

This rotating billboard on Seymour and Nelson, has all three sides showing games related sponsors.

Vancouver2010 sponsors: Visa

Vancouver2010 sponsors Vancouver2010 sponsors

Robson Square decked out with logos on the pillars, the glass and on the ice from the rink’s sponsor.

Vancouver2010 sponsors: GE Vancouver2010 sponsors: GE

Entire buses have been covered! This one was spotted on the corner of Howe and Nelson.

Vancouver2010 sponsor: Samsung

This entire building is plastered with advertising for the official Games clothing, on the corner of Granville and Georgia.

Vancouver2010 sponsors: The Bay

Great big displays, including event mascots, in the hallways of Pacific Center.

Vancouver2010 sponsors: Samsung

With the Games fast approaching, and the more sponsorship ads we start to see, Vancouver2010 fever and fan excitement will surely spread like wildfire soon enough!

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British Columbia International Media Centre


The 2010 Winter Games will welcome media from around the world to a state-of-the-artunaccredited British Columbia International Media Centre (BCMC) at the heart of downtown Vancouver in Robson Square Plaza. The BCMC will be open to serve media from February 1 to February 28, 2010.

The BCMC is a full service broadcasting facility, which includes comfortable, secure, and fully wired networking and operating space. The Centre will provide access to athletes, dignitaries and government leaders, as well as contacts to stories happening outside official Olympic venues. Programming will also occur at the Centre and throughout Robson Square Plaza to showcase B.C. through special events, displays and celebrations.

A prime hub for members of the working press, the BCMC will promote British Columbia, its businesses, communities and tourism opportunities to the world. It will also be a key provider of support services tailored specifically to meet media’s needs.

Accreditation for the BCMC is now closed. For accreditation enquiries please click here.

Accreditation Badge Pickup

Members of the working media who have been approved for accreditation to the BC International Media Centre can collect their accreditation badge before Games-time by visiting Robson Square from January 25 to 29 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. (PST). Media badges will be available in room C245 on BCMC Level C. Please follow signs from the UBC Lobby.

Robson Square is located at 800 Robson Street (between Hornby and Howe). The UBC Lobby entrance is located on the west side of the GE Ice Plaza.

(Media badges will be available again beginning February 1, 2010 at BCMC registration).

Note: You must pickup your own badge and you must present valid picture ID to receive your badge.

Badges must be worn and clearly displayed at all times while at the BCMC.

BCMC Accreditation Policy:

The British Columbia International Media Centre (BCMC) at Robson Square Plaza in Vancouver will be open February 1, 2010 to February 28, 2010 to all journalists representing news organizations covering the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. The Centre will provide working space for media who do not have an Olympic accreditation card from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) – referred to as unaccredited media.

Unaccredited journalists include media professionals with journalistic status, including radio, television, print and online reporters, photographers and videographers wishing to cover events in Vancouver, Whistler, and British Columbia during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games.

Obtaining an accreditation card to the BCMC will allow media to cover all events at the Robson Square Plaza, including press briefings, and will provide access to work spaces and the many services provided at the Centre. Accreditation will not allow media access to events at any official Olympic venue.

BCMC Application Procedure:

BCMC staff, or designated service suppliers, will assess accreditation applications for media wishing to gain access to the BCMC based on the criteria listed below. Media will not be permitted on-site without prior notice and acceptance by BCMC staff. To obtain credentials, media must prove employment and assignment by a recognized media outlet based on:

  • A byline, in print or online, from a recognized media source (recognition will be authorized by the BCMC)
  • Letter from assignment editor of a recognized media source (recognition will be authorized by the BCMC)
  • Photo identification proving employment with a recognized media source (recognition will be authorized by the BCMC)
  • Proof of employment (screen capture with byline) from a website in existence and defined as “covering related news” (recognition will be authorized by the BCMC)

Due to limited capacity, the BCMC will offer no more than 30 accreditation cards for online media. Online journalists wishing to obtain accreditation for the BCMC must submit detailed information about the website they provide content for, including, but not limited to, number of unique visitors and recent major events covered by the website. Applications for accreditation will be assessed by the BCMC on their individual merits.

Journalists meeting the required conditions will receive an electronic confirmation letter which must be presented to BCMC accreditation staff to obtain photo identification credentials. Accredited media will be able to claim their credentials beginning on January 25, 2010 at the Centre’s Robson Square location.

The B.C. International Media Centre will be a prime gateway for timely information and services, including transportation, technical assistance, Internet, and some catering and entertainment. We are unable to offer any expense assistance for visiting media.

Media not able to obtain accreditation at the BCMC will still have the opportunity to access a range of services provided at Games time. If media wish to cover Games-related activities remotely, they can do so by accessing the BCMC website, where up-to-the-minute information will be available around the clock in the form of live and archived news conferences, high-resolution photos, and news releases.

Contact Information For The British Columbia International Media Centre:

Lara Gerrits
Phone: 604.252.3613
Email: Lara.Gerrits@LBMG.ca

Notes on Accreditation:

  • During the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, journalists who wish to use the BCMC should register according to the rules and regulations posted by the BCMC.
  • Provide valid identification documents upon first entry to the BCMC and go through the security check.
  • After completing the registration procedures and receiving a BCMC accreditation card and a journalist’s kit, you will be an accredited BCMC journalist and will be eligible for all BCMC services and events.
  • If the photo provided through online registration does not meet BCMC requirements, you will be required to have another photo taken in the accreditation hall.
  • We recommend that journalists wear the accreditation card whenever covering or reporting on events in Vancouver as well as in the BCMC.
  • Accreditation for the BCMC closes November 30, 2009.

Notes on the BCMC website:

  • Media unable to visit Vancouver during the 2010 Games, but still wishing to cover Games-related activities, will have the opportunity to do so remotely via the BCMC website: www.BCMediaCentre.ca.
  • All news conferences and other events, including athlete appearances, taking place within the BCMC press theatre will be available in real time, live streaming video on the BCMC website.
  • All partner news releases and advisories available to media within the BCMC will be posted in a timely fashion on the BCMC website.
  • During the Games, the BCMC website will act as the prime source of information for media wishing to cover stories related to the Games as well as the Province of BC.
  • Media using the BC International Media Centre are encouraged to monitor Twitter for up-to-the-minute information on events, athlete interview opportunities and other happenings at the BCMC.

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