Rekindle the Olympic spirit at events happening across downtown in our host city, including free public skating at Robson Square, free admission to the Vancouver Art Gallery, street hockey along Granville Street, live appearances by Olympians and a pancake breakfast and talk by VANOC lead man John Furlong on Saturday. Then light up the chilly February nights with a LunarFest Lantern procession on Saturday and a special high-tech light-up of the CPR train at the Roundhouse on Friday, as well as Illuminate Yaletown - a free two-night street party with glowing light installations by 19 artists, live music and more. Missed the lighting of the torch the first time around? See it relit at 4 p.m. on Saturday (Feb. 11-13, vancouver.ca/sharethespirit).
Head for the hills and celebrate the first anniversary of the 2010 Games with live music, theatre sports, family friendly street hockey, tours of the Olympic Sliding Centre, plenty of kids stuff and a one-year anniversary cake at the Celebrate Live Weekend in wintery Whistler. Make sure to stick around on Friday night for a special live concert by Jully Black, and on Saturday, catch a performance by singer-songwriter favourite Hannah Georgas, as well as Shane Koyczan, the performance poet who charmed the socks off millions worldwide with his We Are More speech at the opening ceremonies (Feb. 11-13, whistler.ca).
Get decked out in Canadian garb and head for Cypress Mountain for Let The Games Begin!, a 17-day celebration of Olympic memories that kicks off Saturday with a screening of the 2010 opening ceremonies - complete with the, ahem, malfunction - as well as an Olympic-themed mountain tour, a talk by top Paralympian Lou Gibson and more. Upcoming highlights include ladies-only free ski and snowboard lessons, a ski gates course where you can test your own alpine mettle, screenings of the men's and women's gold medal hockey games and the closing ceremonies, as well as deals on warm winter duds and après-ski suds (Feb. 12-28, cypressmountain.com).
Stock up on sleep, then hit the slopes at Grouse Mountain on Saturday for 24 Hours of Winter - where the mountain will relive its Olympic glory by staying open for a full 24 hours. Cheer on a children's hockey tournament, soak in a beautiful torch relay, go hurtling through the night on a mountain zipline, enjoy a sunset or moonlit snowshoe through the forest or some midnight ice skating, then head inside for food, drinks and live music all through the wee hours, as well as screenings of winter sports films and the unforgettable men's gold medal hockey game. And of course, catch incredible views of Vancouver as you ski and ride while the rest of the city sleeps (Feb. 12-13, grousemountain.com).
Richmond Olympic Oval
Tie on your skates and pick up tips from the greats at the Richmond Olympic Oval, where speed skating medalists Kristina Groves and Denny Morrison are leading free Skate With A Champion sessions - and offering autographs and photos - and Richmond's own Olympic snowboarder Alexa Loo will also join in the fun. And while you're there, take a lightning-fast bobsleigh run on a virtual simulator, check out the display of Olympic memorabilia from the BC Sports Hall of Fame, enjoy live entertainment and interactive sports and even have your picture taken carrying a real Olympic torch in a special Richmond torchbearer procession. No public parking available on site, so best to walk, bike, or ride transit (Feb 12-13, richmond.ca).
Special to The Globe and Mail
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