The Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Spo at Flickr
Here we go again. Denver is officially exploring whether or not to throw its Broncos cap into the Olympic ring for consideration to host either the 2026 or 2030 Winter Games. There’s a lot to work out, if we do — including whether or not the public will support it this time around. It was Denver, after all, that in 1972 voted down the $5 million bond issue meant to fund an Olympics, planned for America’s Bicentennial year. So will the exploratory committee formed by Mayor Hancock decide to submit the bid? Will the International Olympic Committeeforget that Denver was sort of a medal-tease, and instead of rolling its eyes and graciously declining Denver's bid, actually come back for more? And if we do get the nod, will the good folks of Denver even allow it to happen?
Let’s imagine for a moment that all signs point to yes, and that the Olympics come to the Mile High City. To mark the Opening Ceremonies for the Winter Games in Pyeongchang, let's imagine what it might be like in eight or twelve years, when Denver could have a similar event of our own. What might that look like? Here are our ten best guesses.
10. Elway lighting the torch
Seriously, this is Denver. Who else is it gonna be?
9. Ice-dancing Blucifers And not just Blucifer. You can bet serious money that most of our notable public art would be front and center. Nightmare horses, big blue bears, and moon-white gigantic dancing puppets all skating around a huge tree-like pile of the glowing kidneys that are part of "National Velvet" on the 16th Street Pedestrian Bridge. As we see every day, naturally, on the snow-packed streets and in the icy true spirit of our frozen city.
7. The ceremonial beating of one more drums than China had Because of the high cost of hosting the games, Denver will present a multitude of drummers (one drummer more than China had back in 2008, naturally) that will not only be festive but, taking a cue from the buskers on the 16th Street Mall, will also accept donations in small, sweat-stained hats stationed at the base of every drum. It's all in keeping with the theme of the Denver Winter Games: "Wow, can we not afford to be doing this."
"Boo," says Bob Costas, but in a totally intelligent and accessible manner.
6. The bleary-eyed ghost of Bob Costas He’ll be a thing of legend, flitting between the shadows cast by the Olympic torchlight, one eye bright, the other bloodied, dressed in a faded NBC blazer and rambling through color commentary for a slalom competition from 1992. ... Wait, Bob Costas is still alive, living in seclusion on an estate in Boca? Never mind.
KEEP WESTWORD FREE...
Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Teague Bohlen is a writer, novelist and professor at the University of Colorado Denver. His first novel, The Pull of the Earth, won the Colorado Book Award for Literary Fiction in 2007; his textbook The Snarktastic Guide to College Success came out in 2014. His new collection of flash fiction, Flatland, is available now.