Thursday, February 6, 2014

Let the Games Begin!

By Lori Davison, The Groundwater Foundation

The 2014 Winter Olympic Games are scheduled to begin with the opening ceremonies on February 7, 2014 in Sochi, Russia.  Olympic planners were concerned by how little winter snowpack collected in Sochi last year.  To prepare for this year’s games, the Olympic committee set up snowbanks in Sochi to preserve last year’s snow.  After the snowfall in 2013, roughly 28 million cubic feet of natural and artificial snow was moved into massive piles and covered with reflective and thick blankets to reduce melting.  If there is not enough snowfall for all of the outdoor events, workers will be able to produce more artificial snow from the 446 snow guns positioned along the ski runs, and withdraw from the snowbank.  
Olympic Fun Facts:

How much water is used to build an Olympic ice skating rink and how does it compare to domestic water use?

An ice hockey rink needs between 12,000-15,000 gallons of water to create the ice surface before maintenance over the Olympic festivities.  In the United States, the average person used 54-190 gallons of water per day depending on where they live.

Where was the idea of an Olympic Flame burning from the start of the games to the closing first introduced ?

At the 1928 Amsterdam games.

What country has hosted the Winter Olympics more than any other?

The United States has hosted the Winter Olympics four times; 1932 in Lake Placid, 1960 in Squaw Valley, 1980 in Lake Placid, and 2000 in Salt Lake City.

Where will the next Winter Olympics take place?

In 2018, the winter games will be held in Pyeongchang, South Korea. (The next Summer Olympics will take place in Rio de Janiero, Brazil in 2016).



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