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10 Fun Facts About the Winter Olympics

The 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia are approaching – get into the Olympian spirit by brushing up on your knowledge of this age-old competition! Here are 10 facts you didn’t know about the winter Olympics.

While you’re browsing though these fun facts, get inspired for your own Olympics celebration with our Olympic Ring inspired decorations and recipes.


1. Russia took the Olympic celebrations out of this world by taking the traditional Olympic torch on a spacewalk!

2. Winter doesn’t always mean snowy skies – the 1964 Winter Games in Austria marked the first time that artificial snow was needed to construct the track for the bobsled event. The 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid marked the first time they were forced to use fake snow.

3. The USSR didn’t participate in the winter Olympics until 1956. From 1912-1952, Russia did not participate in the Olympics at all. Think of all that wasted gymnastics talent!

4. Russian history buffs will want to make their way to the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, where it’s rumored that Stalin himself had a vacation home.

5. The 2014 Olympic Winter Games will introduce several new sports including ski slopestyle, ski halfpipe, snowboard slopestyle, and a luge team relay.

6. A figure skating event is also being introduced in 2014; the first time in Winter Olympic history that a competition is held before the opening ceremony. 

7. The Winter Olympics have only been hosted by countries in the Northern Hemisphere.

8. In 1924, the very first Winter Olympics were organized by The French Olympic Committee. While it was first introduced as “International Winter Sports Week”, it officially became the Winter Olympics in 1925.

9. The first Winter Olympics were comprised of 285 athletes from 16 nations.

10. This isn’t the first time Russia is hosting the Olympics – the 1980 Olympics were held in Moscow and were boycotted by the US.


If you’re itching for more fun-filled facts about the Olympics, take a peek at our Olympic torch timeline!



Image Credit: White Lines

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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