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2010 Olympic Games Opening Ceremonies Pre-Show

Site of the 2010 Opening & Closing ceremonies.

Today I had the opportunity to get a sneak peak at the 2010 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony Pre-show held at BC Place Stadium in downtown Vancouver.

Ticket I got last minute to attend the pre-show.

Security tents are set-up behind me.

When I arrived at BC Place, there was a medium sized crowd bustling in front of the security tents. After about 10 minutes, we were directed towards the security check points. People with bags had to form separate lines from those without bags who were able to go through “Express Security”.

Crowd is directed towards security tents.

Happy that I get to go in the Express line.

I only had my iPhone and some chewy cinnamon hearts stuck in the inside of my pocket, which I regretted eating later, so I got through the Express line pretty quickly. It was very much like going through airport security except more smiley with less interrogation. Although my security lady was sporting a vicious gang of embroidered cats on her handbag, so I kept my eyes forward at all times.

i can haz catz purrrs.

Metal detector!

Once in the stadium, it was clear that this was a dress rehearsal, not only for the performers, but all the staff working at the venue. Each food and merchandise stand had at least 10 people standing around looking confused and somewhat bored. I was starving, so I went on a hunt for food. My options, as it turned out, were not the most, how shall I say this nicely? I’ll just let the food speak for itself in this picture.

The BBQ chicken sub was so yummy someone ate it right off of the display!

I opted for some delicious $7 “spicy potato wedges”. They tasted like an overcooked Wendy’s baked potato with a slight hint of that red spice that doesn’t really taste like anything.  Yes. Exactly like that.

Freedom Fry?

Moments after taking this picture I actually said, “Ohh I feel a snarky blog post coming on”. This is how cynical I am now. I was ready to dismiss the Opening Ceremonies based on one soggy potato. Tisk. Tisk. But once I walked into the stadium and saw the Olympic rings, I felt a flush of, dare I say, emotion, pink up my cheeks.

I walked to the very top of the stadium and walked around the entire loop and took it all in. I was predictably taken with all the technical details and gear, including masses of electrical cables, enormous spotlights, speakers and tv cameras.

TVs for the broadcast

I snooped around the stadium and took some iPhone snaps until I got asked to return to my seat politely several times, and then once with a bit more gusto, so politely returned to my seat eventually. I am Canadian after-all! And then the show began with a bang!

Since this was a closed event, there were only about ten thousand people in the audience (full capacity = 55, 000). All ticket holders were asked to stay hush-hush about the performance they were about to see. Security was insane during the performance. Anyone taking pictures or video was ushered away by the police in a matter of minutes. Even if you were seen taking your cell phone out of your pocket an Olympic officer would politely remind you that there is no photography allowed.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to spoil any of the well-kept secrets of the Opening Ceremonies, though I will say that the themes, lighting, fxs and performances by some of Canada’s best performers were breathtaking, and even someone as cynical as myself felt truly moved and may have even shed a few tears watching the Canadian flag raised into the air during the National anthem. I felt a rush of pride for my country and remembered the true meaning of the Olympic games.

With my Olympic doubts washed away by this moving ceremony, I am ready to experience our hometown Olympics as they should be, “with glowing hearts” and “open wallets”, because official 2010 events ain’t cheap!

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  • Reply
    Deris ap
    February 9, 2010 at 4:26 AM

    Good luck for you Lisa.!

  • Reply
    February 9, 2010 at 8:32 AM

    Favourite – 1988 of course in which I was a participant (performer, not athlete).

  • Reply
    February 9, 2010 at 11:45 AM

    Great blog post! Thanks for sharing the photos and the tips (note to self, eat before going to events). Too bad they didn’t let you take the 5DmkII with you. Will you be doing some street photography during the games?

  • Reply
    February 9, 2010 at 12:30 PM

    I loved the old school Lillehamer games opening ceremony!

  • Reply
    Thomas Hilditch
    February 9, 2010 at 12:31 PM

    As a displaced New Bruswick native in Boston I feel the pride! Thanks for the preview!


  • Reply
    February 9, 2010 at 12:40 PM

    I’m impressed – and jealous. I’ve never been to your fair city or country but am jealous you got to get in for a preview. I’m sure it was cool and your desk must be cleaner than mine :)

  • Reply
    February 9, 2010 at 12:45 PM

    How exciting for you! And I’m laughing at your cat purse caption. ha!
    I’m a relatively new follower here and quite enjoying all that you’ve posted.

  • Reply
    uberVU - social comments
    February 9, 2010 at 1:06 PM

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by photoaddicts: 2010 Olympic Games Opening Ceremonies Pre-Show: 2010 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony Pre-show held at BC Place Stad… http://bit.ly/9qL2v5

  • Reply
    Greg Martin
    February 9, 2010 at 1:13 PM

    Re: the cheek flush upon seeing the rings.

    I know exactly what you mean. This past summer I visited Lake Placid while my sister ran the Ironman. My son & daughter play ice hockey so we visited the Olypmic ice rink better known as the US ice hockey “shrine”! I find as I grow older, these events bring out strong emotions. This mix of patriotism, human spirit and spirtuality have a powerful effect on me.


  • Reply
    Derek G
    February 9, 2010 at 4:43 PM

    Good luck and have fun! One question though. Where is the snow?

  • Reply
    February 9, 2010 at 11:15 PM

    I was also at the dress rehearsal last night and was worried when a friend sent me a link to your blog that you were going to spoil it. I had the exact same reaction as you – thank you for keeping it a secret!!!

  • Reply
    Craig Taylor
    February 9, 2010 at 11:34 PM

    I have to say I am jealous. I’d eat three order of Spicy Wedge poo-tatoes (cruds instead of spuds?) to get in there.

    I can’t wait until you can share some pics and video though!

  • Reply
    February 10, 2010 at 9:07 AM

    What happened to a couple of the pictures before the “Tvs for broadcast” .. my RSS feeder picked them up, but they’re not here .. VanOc come down on ya ;)

  • Reply
    clarke thomas
    February 10, 2010 at 9:08 AM

    love the feeling of emotion overtaking, when you see something like the rings.

    always tend to steer towards chili when it’s cold out. looking forward to to the ceremonies. these lights look awesome; http://vancouverisawesome.com/2010/02/09/vectorial-vancouver/

  • Reply
    February 10, 2010 at 1:45 PM

    Lisa, lisa, lisa…… French Fries!!! Such a cynic… ;P

  • Reply
    Mostly Lisa
    February 10, 2010 at 1:49 PM

    @Robert — received an email from VANOC’s chief legal officer asking me to remove the interior shots I took of the Olympic stadium from my Twitter & blog 1hour after I posted them. I knew I’d get in trouble, but I didn’t how fast they would react to it. I took the shots down out of respect, but you can’t blame me for trying. i am, after all, a sneaky blogger…

  • Reply
    February 11, 2010 at 5:50 AM

    @Derek G: @Derek G:
    Hi Derek – the east coast stole all our snow!! We don’t usually have too much in the city (we don’t do well in snow here!), just the mountains. But it has been unseasonably warm (10 degrees +) all winter so they have even been trucking the snow in from other mountains to the snowboard and freestyle venue at Cypress Mountain. But Whistler is ready to go!

  • Reply
    Rochii ocazie
    September 9, 2015 at 4:24 AM


    Exact, and the girls like cute dresses. :-D :P

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