The 2012 Summer Olympic Games start tomorrow in London, England. Go Team USA! The Olympics have always been a big deal in my house, we love cheering on the athletes and hearing their amazing stories. It’s also fun to see some of the less mainstream sports. If you’ve got Olympic fever, here are some ways to experience the games here in Atlanta
- Go Biking at The Dick Lane Velodrome in East Point: Vedodrome biking is done on a circular banked track and the bikes have no breaks! You can try this sport out at the Dick Lane Velodrome in East Point. They even have special lessons for kids that are free for East Point residents and minimal fee for those of us that don’t live in East Point.
- Learn to shoot at Stoddard’s Range and Guns in Douglasville: Stoddard’s Range and Guns offers rental guns to try it out. If you like shooting, consider a class and coaching to move on to competition.
- Take Up Water Polo with Kracken Water Polo: Kracken Water Polo is a local polo team started by a couple of guys when they were in high school. They offer lessons for kids through adults and you can try it out for a week free.
- Pick up a sword and Fence: I had a fencing unit once in middle school PE and I LOVED it. I often think about that when I see advertisements for fencing clubs in Atlanta. There are several including Nellya Fencing intown and Atlanta Fencers Club in East Point.
Olympic History in Atlanta
I was in Atlanta for the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games. It was one of the most amazing experiences. Atlanta was transformed into someplace totally different. I sat at a street café and watched two strangers from different countries who didn’t speak the same language dancing. I met folks from all over the world trading pins. I saw someone make a man’s day by giving him extra corporate tickets to a swimming meet at Ga. Tech. I can still see the guy turn to his daughter, raise his arms and say “We’re going baby! We’re going to the Olympics!”
Not everyone gets to experience an Olympics first hand, but you can experience some of the excitement of the ’96 Games at the Atlanta History Center’s Centennial Olympic Games exhibit. Make sure to go upstairs for the interactive portion where kids can try to jump the hurdles.
Once you know the history, visit Centennial Olympic Park in Downtown Atlanta. Bring a towel and splash in the fountains, run around the two playgrounds or play Frisbee on the lawn where Olympic athletes once gathered.
Here’s the latest Field Trips with Sue segment on CBS Better Mornings Atlanta showcasing places to enjoy Olympic events in Atlanta.