2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games

Athletes and spectators from around the world gathered in Vancouver and the alpine resort of Whistler in February and March 2010 for 17 days of thrilling competitions, amazing displays of sportsmanship and magical moments when lifelong dreams were finally realized. The event, along with the region’s spectacular natural playground and its vibrant state-of-the-art venues, put Vancouver in the spotlight as a premier sporting destination.


Vancouver 2010 Olympic Venues

  • BC Place: Opening and Closing Ceremonies
  • Pacific Coliseum - Figure skating and short track speed skating
  • UBC Thunderbird Arena - Ice hockey and Paralympic sledge hockey
  • Vancouver Olympic Centre/Vancouver Paralympic Centre (Hillcrest Community Centre) - Curling
  • Canada Hockey Place (Rogers Arena)- Ice hockey
  • Cypress Mountain- Freestyle skiing and snowboarding
  • Richmond Olympic Oval - Long-track speed skating


The 2010 Olympic Winter Games in numbers:
  • 17 days of competition
  • 9 competition venues
  • 615 medals awarded in 86 competitions
  • 2,632 athletes
  • 10,800 media attendees
  • Approximately 3.5 billion TV viewers worldwide
  • More than 3.3 million pairs of Vancouver 2010 red mittens sold


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Five Top Olympic Firsts

Vancouver was unique as an Olympic host city. How unique? Here are the top five ways

  1. The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games marked the first time in history that Indigenous peoples were recognized as official Olympic hosting partners. The Four Host First Nations (Lil’wat, Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations people) were involved in virtually every aspect of the event.
  2. The 2010 Winter Games were the first Olympics to use a rigorous set of environmental criteria called Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for all new construction.
  3. Vancouver was one of the largest cities ever to host a Winter Olympic Games.
  4. With its mild climate, Vancouver has the warmest average temperatures of any previous Winter Olympic host.
  5. The Games were among the most accessible ever staged, with barrier-free access for persons with disabilities at all venues and facilities.


The Symbol of the Vancouver 2012 - Inukshuk

The Vancouver Organizing Committee (VANOC) selected a contemporary interpretation of the inukshuk as the official emblem of the 2010 Winter Games. Inukshuks are stone sculptures traditionally used by Canada's Inuit people as directional landmarks across the north, but have become adopted as a symbol of hope, friendship and hospitality throughout Canada. The emblem was unveiled in 2005 and named “Ilanaaq,” the Inuit word for friend. Vancouver’s most photographed inukshuk can be found at English Bay Beach.


Keeping the Flame Alive: Experiencing the Games in Vancouver

Sports-minded visitors still have plenty of ways to emulate the athletes, reawaken the vibe and experience the 2010 Olympic Winter Games on a visit to the city. Dip into these unique Olympic-themed activities:

Story idea
Consider a story focusing on the legacy that the 2010 Olympic Games left to Vancouver…and how your readers can experience it when they visit. Partake of all the activities mentioned above, include interviews with locals on their memo-ries of the event, and see if you can hunt down any souvenirs of Games mascots Quatchi, Miga and Sumi – try the souvenir stores in Chinatown. Create an image slideshow of your experiences.