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Author Bryan Searing is volunteering at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
He's working on the Ceremonies team — celebrating the medalists in a small ceremony after they've won their competitions, and prior to the larger ceremony in the evening.
Volunteers - Medalist - Language
He and the other volunteers need to explain to a new medalist where to go, what they need to do and what they don't — often in a second language.
We have been busy with on-site training.
Part - Ceremonies - Team - Victory - Ceremony
I am part of the Ceremonies team, and we are rehearsing the victory ceremony, which will take place at the end of each competition.
In the Winter Olympics, most of the medal ceremonies take place in the evenings at the Medals Plaza. But first we celebrate the medalists right after the competition ends with a small ceremony at the competition venue — in my case: the Olympic Sliding Centre, where the Bobsleigh, Luge and Skeleton events will take place.
Rehearsal - Team - Leader - Volunteers - Role
During the rehearsal our team leader asked that some of the volunteers play the role of the medalist winners. I was selected to be the gold medal winner.
We marched out to the podium. We role-played the announcement of the winners. The presenter handed us a ceremonial gift. And then we posed for photos atop the podium.
Why do this?
Just like any performance, it’s about preparation and practice.
Athletes - Years - Moment - Sliding - Center
The athletes have trained for years up to this moment, but you can bet they are practicing at the sliding center every moment they can so they become familiar with the course.
Each operational area involved in the Olympic Games wants to ensure that they have planned for the details. So this includes not only the Ceremonies Team (my team), but also the Sport Support Team, the Medical Team, the Transportation Team, the Press/Media and their support team, the Event Services Team, and on and...
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