X GAMES, NOT X RATED: ESPN PLANS MORE FAMILY FRIENDLY EVENT
The theme for this summer's ESPN X Games is "big," as
the sports network "is trying to provide a 'bigger
experience' for families," according to Caitlin Rother of
the SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE. In an effort to make the event
more fan-friendly, Games organizers have added 2,000 more
bleacher seats this year, and plan "more activities to
entertain spectators between competitions, better access for
the handicapped and more dining choices in a new food
court." X Games spokesperson Chris Stiepock: "We're trying
to do more things that a family can go to." The games begin
tomorrow with qualifying events and officially get underway
next Friday. Events will run through June 28, and ESPN
plans nearly 40 hours of coverage (UNION-TRIBUNE, 6/18).
USA TODAY's Sal Ruibal previews the X Games today under the
header, "Still Cool, X Games Getting Hot." Although Nike
"dropped" its Games sponsorship this year, adidas America
replaced it "just one week later." In-line aggressive
skater Eitan Kramer, on the public perception of the event:
"In the beginning, the X Games were looked upon as just
another corporation trying to make money off our sports.
Now it's as American as apple pie" (USA TODAY, 6/18).