Thursday, February 03, 2005

It's Official: The NY Times Says the Lake Placid Olympics Were a Success

The 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid were heavily criticized back then for being poorly organized and debt-ridden, and the organizers themselves were occasionally portrayed as yokels who were either dedicated winter sports enthusiasts but in over their heads as businessmen, or hucksters looking to make a quick buck.

Now, on the 25th anniversary of the start of the Lake Placid games, the New York Times has declared them to be a success: may be the best example of an Olympics that worked, an Olympics that did what it was intended to do. The 1980 Olympics put Lake Placid on the map internationally as a destination resort, brought a boom to the local economy that has yet to ebb, left little debt, bestowed spiritual aid to a flagging Olympic movement and created such good will that Lake Placid is still considered a contender for a future Winter Olympics.

Why would I care about this? I worked there, in a position that had enough responsibility to give me an inside view but not enough to take away the fun. I hope to post some stories and anecdotes and impressions over the next couple of weeks. I'll label them "1980," and if you're interested you can check them out; if not skip on down to Sphere's usual fare.


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