2010 Winter Games Highlights
Whistler Olympic Plaza, then known as Medals Plaza, served as the heartbeat of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in Whistler. Every night during the Olympics and Paralympics, people from around the world gathered in celebration of athletic excellence. Almost all stayed afterwards to enjoy the most dynamic entertainment roster ever assembled in Whistler.
For 27 nights, alpine, sliding and Nordic athletes who just hours before had become the best in the world, took to the podium at Medals Plaza. Their smiles and tears moved the crowds of up to 7,000 who cheered on their accomplishments. It was a time of pure joy with people from around the world coming together in peace and celebration.
National anthems of winners’ home nations filled The Plaza as their flags were ceremoniously hoisted high above the crowd. When the strains of “O Canada” rang out, the feel of Canadian hearts bursting with pride was palpable. It was a time of smiles, laughter and hugs shared with friends, old and new.
Each night, after the athletes left the stage, Medals Plaza showed us its inspirational potential as a permanent outdoor cultural venue in Whistler Village. The Plaza was festive epicenter of Whistler’s 2010 Winter Games experience, and it rocked, with top tier talent. Whistler had never before experienced this level of programming diversity. On its final night as Medals Plaza, the venue was the final destination for a high-energy parade that led more than 1,000 athletes down the Village Stroll to the closing ceremonies of the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games.
During the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, The Plaza brought together sport and music at a level never before experienced in Whistler. Along the way, many of us became fans of sporting events we had only just become aware of, like biathlon, bobsleigh and skeleton. We learned about Paralympic sport classification, steering a luge and the origins of Nordic Combined. Our knowledge made our admiration for the Olympians and Paralympians even greater. And, on those nights when Canadian athletes received medals at The Plaza, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house — it just felt that good.
That spirit lives on at Whistler Olympic Plaza, the cornerstone of Whistler’s new place-based cultural tourism destination strategy.
Whistler Olympic Plaza, let the future begin.