SBD/August 10, 2012/Olympics

Olympic Names: Kenya Plans To Bid For '24 Summer Games

Kenya Prime Minister RAILA ODINGA said that the country plans to make a bid "to become the first African nation to host the Olympic Games in 2024." Odinga said that the “region’s trillion-dollar economy was set to boom over the next decade," and for Kenya, east Africa’s “leading economy, hosting the Olympics would bring a psychological boost as well as ‘enormous benefits’ in terms of investment in infrastructure” (FINANCIAL TIMES, 8/10). Meanwhile, Brazilian fans have praised London "for its superb hosting of the Olympics and say they will continue this when the Games go to Rio in 2016.” In “generous terms they called the Olympics ‘simply perfect’ and vowed to continue the party in similar fashion” (London INDEPENDENT, 8/10).

PRAISE FOR THE VOLUNTEERS: In London, Eva Simpson notes the “army of volunteers who alongside Britain’s sporting triumphs are now being widely hailed as the most successful part of London 2012.” While some have “criticised the dominance of privately educated competitors or tickets priced beyond the means of many, volunteering has been hailed as a showcase of the Games’ spirit of diversity and inclusivity.” There is “even talk of it being one the event’s biggest legacies.” But perhaps “more touching has been the role of the 70,000 Games Makers,” who have provided “warm welcomes, helpful directions and good humour to the millions of sports fans attending the Games.” Their enthusiasm “has been infectious” (LONDON TIMES, 8/10). The London INDEPENDENT writes the volunteers are the “unsung -- and unpaid -- heroes and heroines who will take home priceless memories” (London INDEPENDENT, 8/10).

ROYAL PARDON: In London, Tim Walker writes PRINCE WILLIAM has been “one of Team GB’s most regular supporters,” but he will not be able to “attend the closing ceremony on Sunday.” Prince William has “been on leave from his post as a search-and-rescue pilot for the RAF during the Games.” His wife, KATE MIDDLETON, will “attend the closing ceremony with her brother-in-law and fellow Olympic ambassador, PRINCE HARRY” (London TELEGRAPH, 8/10).

FASHION FRIENDLY: In a special to the TORONTO STAR, D’Arcy Doran writes in addition to the “biggest medal haul in more than a century, Team GB’s other success is their uniforms,” designed for adidas by STELLA MCCARTNEY. The uniforms “reworked the Union Jack for the 21st century while raising the bar for Olympic style.” The uniform’s “popularity seems to grow” (TORONTO STAR, 8/10).

MOVIE REVIEW: In L.A., Gary Goldstein writes “FRANK & CHIP: THE OLYMPIC EXPERIENCE” is a “flat documentary” which details Olympic history “from 1928 through the 1940s vis-á-vis New Jersey gymnasts FRANK and IRMA (nickname: CHIP) HAUBOLD, the first married couple to compete in the Games together.” Although most of Frank and Chip's story “takes place against that landmark era from the Great Depression to World War II, there's a lack of propulsive drama to the couple's tale” (L.A. TIMES, 8/10).
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