Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Olympics Day #2 - Pine Beetles and Parks

Transportation - Day #2
7 Skytrains.
2 Streetcars.
Millions of miles walked (okay, maybe not, but it felt like it!)

Today was our first chance to see an event at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics and I was impressed on so many levels. We went to the women's 500m Speedskating - what amazing athletes! The medals went to Korea, Germany, and China, but there were also some super fast skaters from USA, Canada, Japan, and Holland. Their were a lot of Canadians at the Richmond Olympic Oval, but I'm quite certain the Dutch outnumbered everyone. Just in case their orange wasn't visible enough, Benetton was passing out neon orange gloves for free.

This was the one venue I was most excited to see because it plays a big part in Vancouver's sustainability message for the Olympics. The massive roof of the oval is built entirely out of pine from British Columbia's forests that were devastated by the pine beetle. Of their 47 million hectares of forest, seven million were ruined by the pine beetle. Vancouver is hoping to show people that the dead trees can be put to good use as lumber and used a million board feet in the ceiling to prove their point. It's beautiful too!

We're definitely getting to know all of Vancouver while we're here and today we were down in Richmond walking along the river. There were some great parks to play at along the riverwalk leading to the Olympic venue and that provided some nice distraction and entertainment.

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