All members of Team USA go through the procedure of team processing. San Jose, California, is the location for team processing prior to heading to Beijing. It is here where athletes receive their official Team USA clothing, travel documents, gather for photographs, and receive final briefings about Games processes, the Olympics and the host country. Additionally, the film shown at team processing is highly inspirational.
Transportation in Beijing
If athletes are living at the Athlete Village campus, transportation is typically not much of a problem. If, however, a team is located off-campus, then transportation becomes more of an issue. There is a special department set up to take care of human and equipment transport.
Just One Nation of Many
The logistics and staff it takes to get just one nation to the Olympic Games are extensive. Each nation must then interact with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and their respective support staff.
The staff areas I covered in this column are just part of a much larger list. More staff areas include: Athlete Services/Ombudsman, Chefs de Mission, Games Records, International Affairs, Legal, Local Information, Photography, Off-Venue Housing, USOC On-site Operations Center, Sports and Venues, Technology, Tickets, Air Transportation, USOC Games Hospitality, USOC-Beijing Training Facilities, Athlete and Olympic Village Services and U.S. Drug Administration (USADA).
As you watch the opening ceremonies on television, take a moment to consider the tremendous amount of planning and coordination it takes to carry out an event of such magnitude. Then consider that the coordination continues right through to the closing ceremonies.
Hats off to the people that work so hard behind the scenes to make the Olympics happen. Now, let the Games begin.
You can find more behind-the-scenes Olympic information on my blog site
that will be Olympic-focused through August.