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Winter Olympics: All You Need to Know

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You could spend countless hours sifting through all the websites about the Games, or try to catch all the coverage on television. But who has time for that? There's so much going on before and during the Games, it's hard to keep up. Who are the favorites? Are there any cheating scandals or other Olympic Village dramas going on? You could spend hours just on the athletes' clothing alone. Check out our fascinating Olympics facts.

Winter Olympics 2010 Everything You Need to Know

The U.S. Favorites

Who are the U.S. favorites? Out of all 15 events at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, who are the ones who seemed destined to win gold? Here are a few of the favorites.

Shaun White - Snowboarding Halfpipe
Apolo Ohno - Short-Track Speed Skating
Lindsey Vonn - Alpine Skiing
Jeremy Abbott - Figure Skating
Rachael Flatt - Figure Skating

The Rest of the World's Favorites

Who are the rest of the world's favorites to win? There is definitely some strong competitors. Here are few that have caught the world's attention.

Kim Yu-Na of Korea - Figure Skating (Korea)
Tatjana H├╝fner - Luge (Germany)
Aliona Savchenko & Robin Szolkowy - Pairs Skating (Germany)
Oksana Domnina & Maxim Shabalin - Ice Dancing (Russia)
Jeremy Wotherspoon - Speed Skating (Canada)

Got Snow? Vancouver doesn't...

Vancouver sounds like the ideal place to host the 2010 Winter Olympics, right? Unfortunately, Vancouver has experienced a bit of a heat wave recently.In order to create the snow capped mountains Vancouver is known for, snow needed to be hauled in by truck or helicoptered in.

Ralph Lauren Walks the Winter Olympics Runway

Gone are the days of boring and drab Olympic-wear. This year the U.S. team has decided to take a more fashionable approach. Classic American designer Ralph Lauren has lent his talent to creating the team's wardrobe. Keep your eyes out for the debut of the line on February 12th.

Olympic Medals Go Green

What was once gold, silver and bronze will now be green. The medals awarded to this year's Olympians are made of recycled electronics and will be the heaviest medals in Olympics' history. No two medals will be alike making them completely one-of-a-kind.

Weirdest Event

Take cross-country skiing and combine it with rifle shooting and you have the Olympic event known as the biathlon. This bizarre sport has been around since 1861 but it was accepted by the Olympic committee as an event in 1960.

Another Odd Event

Ever heard of curling? This is another strange Olympic event. It's not exactly like bowling or shuffleboard but similar. Teams take turns sliding heavy, polished granite stones down the ice towards the target. Two team members with brooms accompany each rock.

Do they really eat their Wheaties?

Athletes train for countless hours to prepare for the Olympics. Diet is a huge component of that. Most competitors must eat 4,000-5,000 calories just to keep up with the energy demands of hard core training. Not only do they have to deal with hunger but they also have to deal with dehydration due to competing at high altitudes.

Blogging Rules for Athletes

There are now new restrictions on athletes concerning social media sites and blogging during this year's Olympics. Athletes are banned from referring to their sponsors or advertisers in postings and they can't act as journalists. Many competitors are confused about the regulations and have stopped posting altogether.

Price Tag for Olympic Village

The final price tag for the Vancouver Olympic Village (VOV) was over $1 billion Canadian dollars. Despite a funding crisis, the VOV was completed just in time for the games and can house over 3,000 athletes, coaches, and officials.

Must Have Olympic Accessory

What is the one must have accessory during this year's games? The red and white woven mittens with the stitched Olympic rings and maple leaf of coarse! This hot item is $10 and all net proceeds go to developing athletic programs in Canada.

Building a Green Olympic Village

It was extremely important building green and sustainable buildings for the Vancouver Olympic Village (VOV). The VOV faces west, which maximizes light and ventilation. Each building uses recycled building materials and one of the buildings is even designed to create as much energy as it uses.

Winter Olympics Hot Spots

Vancouver is known for its' nightlife. There are no shortage of cool bars and out-of-the way speakeasies. You can order "O Bites" at hot spot Opus Bar during the games, which is a specialty on the Olympic appetizer menu. Go to speakeasy Granville Room where you can enjoy a cocktail inspired by speed skater Cindy Klassen's 2006 win in Turin called "Winner Take All."

Olympians on Their Downtime

There is no shortage of pressure while competing at the games. Athletes are away from their family, friends and native country. However, there is definitely some time to play. The Vancouver Olympic Village includes an area where competitors can relax, chat with team members and maybe play some Rock Band.

Accusations of Cheating

Accusations of cheating have plagued the Olympics from its' start and this year is no different. Canadian skeleton racer Jeff Pain has accused the German team of putting magnets on their sleds giving them an unfair advantage.

Canadian Wardrobe Malfunction

Canada's winter olympic team decided to revamp their uniforms in time for the 2010 games but did not think it would cause so much controversy. The redesigned "C" insignia has some politicians upset because it looks similar to the federal Conservative parties logo. Who knew uniforms would cause a political firestorm.

Olympic Toke?

The media lovingly referring to this year's Olympic torch as the "Olympic Toke" because of it resembles a hand rolled Marijuana cigarette. The media is having a field day and the Vancouver Olympic Committee is trying to take the comparison in stride.

For the Price of Admission

The Vancouver Olympic Committee is keeping the opening ceremony line-up hush hush but some details happened to get leaked. Bryan Adams and Sarah McLachlan will perform as well as Canadian Aboriginal drummers and singers. Starting at $751 you can buy your own tickets to watch it all unfold.

Cute and Cuddly Olympic Mascots

Miga, Sumi and Quatchi are the newest and cutest faces of the 2010 Winter Olympics. Miga is a sea bear cub who's dream is to land 720 cork half pipe, Sumi is an animal spirit who wants to share the beauty of Canada's mountains and forests and Quatchi is a sasquatch who dreams of being a hockey goalie.

A Message of Peace

The Truce Wall is made up of two pillars featuring Aboriginal artworks symbolizing peace and harmony within the Olympic Village and the games. Athletes and officials are asked to sign and register the installation as a sign of support.

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