Millions of people will be glued to their television when the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympic Games begin. The pageantry, the show, the Parade of Nations and the lighting of the cauldron entertain and move us.
From experience, I can tell you that it is a thrill to walk into a stadium filled with 100,000 people that are cheering for you. Ok, they may not all be cheering for you as an individual, but for you as a nation and what you represent. It sends a chill up your spine and brings a tear to your eye.
As you may imagine, there is a lot that you don’t see on TV. Or even as a spectator in the stadium. Come back stage with me as I lift the curtain of what happens before the athletes and officials enter the stadium for the Parade of Nations.
Getting 10,000 athletes from the Olympic villages to the Olympic Stadium at the same time is no mean feat. Just think of the amount of buses needed. And not to even think about the logistic nightmare of routing close to 200 buses around town, closing down highways as these buses make their way to the stadium.
It was one of the most impressive sights that I have seen as an event planner to see the California freeways shut down exit by exit as the Olympic buses traveled to the Opening Ceremony. No other traffic was allowed on the freeways. I have never seen the freeways empty like that. I can only imagine what the gridlock was like after we had passed them.
Waiting and Waiting
When you arrive at the Olympic stadium, you don’t get to just hop out and parade your way into the stadium. This is when you wait your turn while the festivities begin inside the stadium. As athletes, you are corralled either inside an arena as in Los Angeles, or just on the training track outside the stadium as in Seoul. This can easily take several hours that you are standing around in the blazing sun with nothing to do. No wonder then that many athletes whose events are in the first days of the Olympics don’t walk in the Opening Ceremony. It is pretty tiring!
On the other hand, when you are waiting, it is a perfect time to find some new friends and take pictures with athletes you have always admired. In Seoul, I took pictures with my diving friends from all over the world, as well as with famous athletes like Swedish tennis player Stefan Edberg and US basketball player David Robinson.
That’s what you’ve been standing around for the last few hours. To walk into a stadium and have 100,000 people cheering for you. To see the Olympic flag brought into the stadium and the final lap of the Olympic flame before the cauldron gets lit… Let the Games begin!
Just as you don’t see everything that is happening, attendees don’t see everything that is going on behind the scenes of your event. And they shouldn’t. You also don’t usually see behind the scenes of what the makes the best entrepreneurs successful.
I have assembled a Dream Team of Marketing Champions to share some of their Gold Medal Secrets during the Games. They are top notch in their area of expertise and they each will be giving away some amazing information on the subjects of public speaking, video marketing, sponsorships, workshops and seminars, productivity and performance.
Grab your Gold Medal Secrets from Marketing Champions absolutely free at http://marketingchampionsgold.com.