Guest post by Wendy Piersall
As a native of Chicago, we watched the Beijing Olympics with both excitement and hope. Chicago is one of four cities competing to host the Olympics in 2016 along with Madrid, Rio do Janeiro, and Tokyo.
If Chicago wins the bid to host the Olympics, it will be the second time the city has been chosen. But the Olympics have never been held in Chicago – that’s because the Olympic Committee decided to move the 1904 Games to St. Louis instead of Chicago so that they could coincide with the World’s Fair. Chicago has been trying to get our turn back ever since!
We are putting a lot of resources and money into winning the chance to host the Games here. The 2016 Bid Committee has hundreds of people on it – including well known Olympians Michael Phelps and Michael Jordan. And the fact that our new President Elect Barack Obama is from Chicago is said to have helped us a bit, too. We may not have a true gold medal team working on this project, but it sure comes close!
Chicago is also working to ensure that whatever we do to host the Games is going to leave as little of an impact on the environment as possible. The Olympic Committee has specifically requested of all the competing cities that their preliminary plans provide a long-term answer to what happens to all of the structures that will be built just for the Olympic Games. Chicago is lowering the carbon footprint of the event by building structures that can be converted later to buildings for other uses.
Ultimately, it’s not just the people that will help us bring the Olympics to Chicago, but also what we have to offer. We have the beautiful lakefront Millenium Park, many sports venues, and an existing public transportation system that already transports nearly 2 million people every day between the city and suburbs. Chicago is also already very well known as one of the biggest sports cities in the nation. Between the Cubs (baseball), Sox (baseball), Bears (football), Blackhawks (hockey), Bulls (basketball), and the Chicago Fire (soccer), we have some serious sports fans here!
Wendy Piersall is a entrepreneurial mom who loves Chicago enough in the summertime to put up with the horrible Chicago wintertime. She can be found talking a lot on Twitter and also heads up marketing for Escalate Media and TotallyHer.