Social Media Spreads Olympic Day Fanfare
An IOC map indicates the more than 160 countries with Olympic Day celebrations planned. (IOC)
(ATR) IOC head of social media Alex Huot tells Around the Rings
"the heart of Olympic Day is to get people active”.
Typically observed June 23, the day the IOC was founded in 1894, Olympic Day encourages people to become more physically active through festivals, promotions and fun runs.
More than 160 countries are organizing events to celebrate this year’s Olympic Day.
Social Media Spreads Olympism
In its efforts to spread the spirit of Olympism, the IOC is taking advantage of social media networks.
Just as in past years, participants who share photos, videos and stories of how they plan to stay active on Olympic Day via Facebook will be entered to win an Olympic pin.
Olympic Day events around the world will also be mapped online through Facebook and Twitter.
Olympic Day pins from the IOC. (IOC)
Unlike previous years, however, the IOC has also launched a Foursquare page to allow for a more interactive experience.
“What we wanted to do differently this year is bring mobile integration to Olympic Day,” Huot tells ATR
Foursquare allows users to “check in” to venues across the globe. When account holders use their mobile devices to check in to two or more past, current or future Olympic stadiums and training arenas on foursquare, they unlock the official “Get Fit for Olympic Day” badge.
“We wanted to add a layer of mobile experience so we’ve done that and it’s been tremendous,” Huot says. “Pretty much everybody who’s signed up to the account has unlocked the Olympic Day badge.”
The IOC will use Olympic Day as the occasion to announce the winner of the "I Copy U" contest. The photo competition involved fans mimicking the poses of iconic athletes and tweeting their pictures. The winner of the competition will win a trip to the London Games.
The IOC is also working with Instagram, Tumblr and Google+ to connect to more fans, according to Huot.
Around the World
Eight cities throughout Turkey, including 2020 bid city Istanbul, took part in Olympic Day celebrations back on June 10.
Madrid, another 2020 candidate, also held Olympic Day early, choosing to celebrate on June 18 instead. Almost 2,000 people participated in the 10 km Korregato Summer Race through the streets of Madrid.
Fun runs are the most frequent means of observing Olympic Day. (IOC)
Rio de Janiero, host of the 2016 Summer Olympics, started celebrating with a photo competition launched on June 19. Organized by Rio 2016, the contest encourages amateur photographers to document their favorite Olympic sports for the chance to win an Olympic pin.
Russia, host country of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, will stage a variety of events to celebrate Olympic Day, including a half marathon, a 2012m fun run, a football match between Olympic athletes and an evening festival featuring fireworks and a balloon launch in Moscow.
The United Kingdom will also host its fair share of Olympic Day events. The University of Bath, chosen to host Paralympics GB’s preparation camp, will host an Olympic Day run with a 3km race for youths under 16 and a 5km run for adults.
More than 700 Olympic Day events will be held across the U.S., almost doubling the participation recorded in 2011.
U.S. Olympic Day events include free race days at each of 351 sanctioned BMX tracks across the country, “Learn to Skate” with Olympic gold medalist Sarah Hughes in New York City, the finale of the US Olympians’ “Walk to London” in Washington D.C., the YMCA National Gymnastics Championship in Milwaukee and an “Olympic Field Day” in Grand Prairie, Texas.
Written by Hannah Reid.
For general comments or questions, click here.
20 Years at #1: Your best source of news about the Olympics is www.aroundtherings.com, for subscribers only.
(Copyright 1992 - 2013, all rights reserved. The information in this report may not be published, excerpted, or otherwise distributed in print or broadcast without the express prior consent of Around the Rings.)