Be the best that you can be and reap rewards 

Former Olympic organizer said goal should be to entertain the spectators so they will come back when they have more time

When Park City hosted the 2002 Olympic Games their goal was to be the best host they could be.

"What you want to create is an experience that will encourage visitors to come back and to spread the word about what a great time they had," said Frank Bell, Park City’s Olympic Services director.

To help the town reach its goals civic leaders and volunteers put together a Master Plan four years out from the Games, Bell told more than 50 people at a Whistler meeting this week organized by the Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation.

The plan outlined how Park City would entertain and benefit from the Games as a secondary host site. In 2002 Salt Lake was the Olympic host, just as Vancouver is, in the B.C. bid to win the 2010 Winter Games.

Vancouver is bidding against Salzburg, Austria and Pyeongchang, Korea. The International Olympic Committee will award the Games in July.

There were several must-achieve objectives in Park City’s Master Plan. They included making sure there was no cost to the taxpayer for the Park City party, inheriting legacies such as venue sites, involving children, getting Olympic city recognition, boosting the economy of the resort and managing the impacts.

"As your dream of the bid comes true," said Bell. "It is important for Whistler to put together its own Master Plan.

"You don’t want the Games to happen to you… You want to be part of it.

"You don’t want the Games to just ride over you."

Negotiating money from sponsors and the Salt Lake Organizing Committee lay at the root of making sure the costs of the $1.5 million US celebrations were not passed on to the taxpayer, explained Bell.

For example Park City negotiated $100,000 from Coke, an Olympic sponsor, for their participation in the town’s festivities. The city also leased all its parking lots to SLOC for volunteer and staff parking and they even rented out civic facilities to get cash.

And the shindig was substantial.

Park City’s main street was closed to traffic and a pedestrian-friendly area was set up. There were specially crafted wrought-iron warming fires up and down the street, food vendors set up in tents, local artists performed and there were even horses to pet as the Budweiser Clydesdales set up their barn in a parking lot just off Main Street.

"We created a people-friendly experience in downtown Park City, said Bell.


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