West Coast Kid

Follow my journey as a Students Live reporter through the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games and beyond!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Youth Olympic Games

Probably not too many people are aware, but we are into the 10th day of Olympic play right now: the 2010 Youth Olympic Games in Singapore. These are the first ever Youth Olympic Games, with athletes ranging from 14 to 18 years old. These games are 12 days long and have 3,600 athletes competing. Although you may not have even known they were going on, they actually are a huge event with 205 National Olympic Committees, 1,200 media representatives, 20,000 local and international volunteers and over 370,000 spectators. These are Summer Games and consist of 26 different summer sports, being competed in 18 different venues.

The mascots for these games are Merly; a merlion (an imaginary creature with the head of a lion and the body of a fish) and Lyo; a lion. Merly's dream is to become an environmental scientist, and Lyo's favourite saying is "Never say never".

The Youth Olympic Games even have their own Olympic Flame:

A simple flame passed hand to hand
Not by the fastest or the strongest,
But by people whose greatest gift is what they give of themselves
Because, it’s not just what you do for the record books,
It's what you do for others.

It's a real shame that these don't get the publicity that the regular Olympic Games receive, because at the end of the day it's all the same. These athletes work just as hard as the older ones, and their competition is just as intense. The Olympic Committee and volunteers work just as hard and people could be having just as much fun. Really the Olympic Games are about athletes working hard for something they love, it's about education, it's about countries coming together and about people celebrating; the Youth Olympic Games have all that and more.

The pattern seems to look like the Youth Olympic Games are hosted on the same year as the regular Olympic Games, but the opposite season. The next Youth Olympic Games are set to take place in January 2012, in Innsbruck, Austria- these will be the first ever Winter Youth Olympic Games.

If you're as interested as I am, you can visit this website to learn more: http://www.singapore2010.sg/public/sg2010/en.html

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Official Commemorative Book

Only a few days ago, I received an email from my good buddy John Furlong. His note was informing me (along with a few of our other friends) that this week VANOC released the Vancouver 2010 souvenir book called:

"With Glowing Hearts: The Official Commemorative Book of the XXI Olympic Winter Games and the X Paralympic Winter Games/Des plus brillants exploits: Le livre commmoratif officiel des XXIes Jeux olympiques dhiver et des Xes Jeux paralympiques dhiver"

In less than a week it is said to already be a Canadian Bestseller. VANOC says it has already received 14,000 orders and is expecting to clear out its first 17,500 prints.

This is a 400 page book of the Games' greatest pictures, quotes and memories; perhaps Sidney Crosby's golden goal might be mentioned?

Here's a note from the publisher: In 2010, Vancouver and Whistler will host 17 days of Olympic Winter Games competition (February 12-28) and 10 days of Paralympic Winter Games competition (March 12-21). With Glowing Hearts will be the single most powerful visual representation of those 27 days of sport - an exclusive publication capturing the true spirit of the Games, as told through breathtaking photographic images and captions that bring the reader right back to the "field of play" and all the Games action. The book will showcase the raw emotion and pure excitement of the Games - a volume to be treasured by all Games enthusiasts wishing to savour the Vancouver 2010 experience long after the competition ends. The first time an official commemorative book of the Games sanctioned by the Organizing Committee has been widely available to the general public, With Glowing Hearts will truly be a Games keepsake.

I hear there's even a quote from my own buddy John; I'm heading to Chapters to pick up a copy. Or you can order online!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Introducing- Wenlock and Mandeville!

As the end of the school year is rolling around and exam stress is piling up, there's light at the end of the tunnel: only 785 days until London 2012! I don't know about you, but I can't wait; I'm hoping to go volunteer in England!

There has been quite a lot of discussion regarding the 2012 mascots Wenlock and Mandeville who were unveiled a few weeks ago. I personally love their British names, but their appearance however, I'm not so keen. To me, they resemble teeth, or dentist friends.

People are wondering if the 2012 Games are being hosted by Japan judging by their mascots. However if you remember back to when our 2010 mascots were unveiled people complained about how Asian they looked as well. I think that almost every Canadian grew to love Sumi, Miga and Quatchi so who knows what could happen with the London fellows.

Wenlock the Olympic mascot and Mandeville the Paralympic mascot came into being from steel being manufactured in Bolton for the Olympic Stadium.

Just like our beloved Vancouver mascots, these guys have a story behind their creation too; with a little bit of a different theme. I'm interested to see if the hearts of the Londoners will open up to Wenlock and Mandeville like us Canadians did with Miga, Quatchi and Sumi.

What do you think?