Park City’s Olympic era, as seen in snapshots | ParkRecord.com

Park City’s Olympic era, as seen in snapshots

by Jay Hamburger THE PARK RECORD

Myles Rademan was one of City Hall’s lead Olympic organizers in the years before the 2002 Winter Olympics were staged.

And he took lots of snapshots as Park City prepared to host the Games.

Rademan, who was City Hall’s public affairs director during the Olympic era, has been tapped to present a slideshow and give a talk about readying for the Games as part of the community’s 10-year anniversary celebration.

The event is scheduled in the Park City Council’s chambers at the Marsac Building on Tuesday. It starts at 6:30 p.m. It is free and open to the public.

Rademan essentially served as City Hall’s No. 2 Olympic organizer. He worked closely with Frank Bell, who directed the Olympic planning for the municipal government.

Rademan said his remarks will address what needed to be accomplished at City Hall and in the wider community to stage the Olympics.

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"A lot of people don’t know the back story," he said.

Rademan and others from City Hall traveled extensively to other cities that hosted an Olympics between 1996 and 2000. He said the slideshow will include images from Olympic cities like Atlanta, Sydney, Australia, the Japanese city of Nagano, and Lillehammer, Norway. Park City leaders of that era were especially impressed with Lillehammer, the host city of the 1994 Winter Olympics.

The Park City area hosted approximately half of the events during the Games in 2002. Athletic competitions were held at Park City Mountain Resort, Deer Valley Resort and the Utah Olympic Park. Main Street, meanwhile, was one of the Olympic region’s celebration hotspots.

Olympic lessons

City Hall on its website maintains a section dedicated to the municipal government’s role in the Games, saying that 175 people from the city ranks volunteered more than 6,000 hours between them.

The numbers do not include volunteers assigned to public safety duties.

The website also lists lessons that organizers learned during the Games and compiles some of the criticism lodged at the time.

Lessons included:

  • "The Olympics are over quickly, but planning takes time, patience and resources."
  • "Post-Olympic expectations might be unrealistic."
  • "Capitalize on the buzz, but discount the hype."
  • "Commercialization is a fact of life, but it can be mitigated."
  • "Olympic experience grows and attitudes change quickly."

    Criticisms included:

  • "Ticket scalping"
  • "Religious proselytizing on Main Street"
  • "Uneven business conditions"
  • "Poor transportation link between Park City & Salt Lake City"
  • "Bus service to neighborhoods."

    In the years since the Olympics, bus service connecting Park City and Salt Lake City has been launched. There are also more extensive bus routes into neighborhoods nowadays than there were during the Games.

    The Olympic section of the website is available at http://www.parkcity.org . Select the ‘Living Here’ dropdown menu, then ‘Special Events & Facilities" and then ‘Olympics.’