2018 Winter Olympic Games Conclude


LOUD AND PROUD – Sophomores McKenzie Waters and Katie Saluk are in support of team USA during the 2018 Winter Olympic Games. The Olympics caught the world’s attention over the course of 16 days. The United States finished with 23 medals in the competition.

Held in 23 different cities over the course of 94 years and involving millions of professional athletes sporting their unique talents in 15 different events, the Winter Olympic Games are a worldwide sensation.

Athletes from across the globe experienced the inclement weather of the 2018 Winter Olympics host city: Pyeongchang, South Korea. The games were in full swing for two weeks, starting Feb. 7 and lasting until Feb. 20. Participants could compete in alpine skiing, biathlon, bobsleigh, cross-country skiing, curling, figure skating, freestyle skating, ice hockey, luge, Nordic combined, short track speed skating, skeleton, ski jumping, snowboarding, or speed skating. “If I had the chance, I would take part in curling because it takes an immense amount of skill,” sophomore Cyle Renaud said.

The opening ceremony was held in Pyeongchang on Friday, Feb. 9, for just over two hours. The ceremony director was Song-Seung Whan. Song’s intention of the ceremony was to show the past, present and future of Korea. The Olympic flag was carried around the stadium by eight athletes, with four of them being accomplished Olympians and the other four as rising young stars. Korean figure skating idol Yuna Kim received the Olympic flame from two players of the Korean Women’s hockey team after they made their way up a steep incline to hand off the Olympic torch. Kim skated above the stadium on the Olympic cauldron while waiting. Song designed the steep journey of the torch hand-off to reflect the uphill battle athletes face when becoming Olympians.

South Korean designer Lee-Suk-woo designed the gold, silver and bronze medals, using a tree trunk-like texture to incorporate the symbolism of unity between the countries. The medals feature the Korean alphabet as well as Korean culture and traditions. A teal and red ribbon made out of a traditional South Korean fabric called gapsa was used to hang the medals around the necks of the athletes. Each medal has a different weight: Gold weighs 586 grams, Silver 580 grams and Bronze 493 grams. Converted to the US Customary System, these weights are 1.29 lbs, 1.28 lbs and 1.09 lbs, respectively. They all have a diameter of 92.5 millimeters. There was a total of 259 medals hung around the necks of champion athletes competing in the 2018 Winter Olympic Games.

Sophomore Tate DenBeste said he enjoys watching the Biathlon because it includes two of his favorite things to do: skiing and shooting. DenBeste is joined by millions of viewers streaming the Games live on televisions, computers and phones across the globe. The Olympics take place in both the summer and winter. “I like tuning into the Summer Olympic Games more,” sophomore Dustin Dreager said.