Roundhouse, Vancouver’s community centre is a historical monument, its 374 steam engine being the one that pulled the first transcontinental train into Vancouver. Ten of the Roundhouse staff had to be laid off a week before the Olympics started due to money diverted to finance the Games.
Artist Ken Wesman, who has been drawing inspiration from the Olympics since the 1988 Games of Calgary, is raising money for the YWCA in Vancouver, a non-profit organisation working mainly with children and women who have suffered from domestic abuse, by auctioning his Olympic themed paintings.
Following the model of BCMC the village of Whistler, one of the main hosts of the Olympic outdoor competitions, has put together a similar centre catering for the media in town interested in following stories out the beaten Olympic track: the Whistler Media House. This article also features a list of digital resources for the Winter Games.
Atos Origin, the Olympic’s IT partner since Beijing and suppliers since Barcelona, do not want to grab the limelight during this, or indeed, any games. In fact, they actively seek out to be as invisible as they can, knowing that the entire technical infrastructure; from press releases to results, to venue computer terminals and international media coverage depends on their ability to remain ubiquitous, a silent but incredibly important factor of mega events facilitation. A error in the delivery, a server crash or a system failure, could spell disaster for the whole operation.
The Vancouver Art Gallery, located in Robson Square, which includes the British Columbia Canada Pavilion at its 4th floor, is marking the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games with a dynamic exhibition of British Columbia’s renowned artists.
City officials are using the Winter Olympics as a platform to show the world they are leading the way with green energy. Throughout the city, pavilions have been set up to promote and educate people about environmental issues. Live City Vancouver in Yaletown is one example of this initiative. This is where the Vancouver House is located, showcasing ‘Vancouver Green Capital’, an economic development programme which highlights the work of local entrepreneurs and community leaders.
The Aboriginal Pavilion, based in the heart of downtown Vancouver (West Georgia Street & Hamilton St), promotes the culture and heritage of Canada’s oldest people, as part of British Columbia’s showcase during the Vancouver Winter Olympics. A light and visual effects show, traditional food and artwork have attracted 14,000 spectators each day since the start of the Games.
AND + W2 is a programme of debates and artworks, constituting the only Games time cultural collaboration between the Vancouver 2010 and London 2012. It is co-produced with W2 in Vancouver and is thematically structured around the Abandon Normal Devices (AND) festival of new cinema and digital culture. AND is a Legacy Trust funded programme in England’s Northwest. Produced in association with FACT, Tenantspin and Dada for Vancouver 2010 and the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad programme in England’s Northwest.
It was immediately apparent on my first day in Vancouver that experiencing an Olympic city during the games time period is a rich and unique opportunity. My first stop was to register at the British Columbia Media Centre, a slick and professional operation with all the amenities that money can buy and a perfect office from home for the world’s journalists.