From Main Sports activities Occasions to Rock Live shows, The Legacy of Helsinki 1952 Lives On

Northampton, MA –Information Direct– Worldwide Olympic Committee

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Seventy years in the past in Helsinki, an expanded and revived Olympic Video games supplied a welcome uplift for a war-ravaged world. Its sequence of sporting adventures appears exceptional even at present, because the Finns proceed to benefit from the sport’s legacy on this seventieth anniversary yr.

Czechoslovakia’s Emil Zatopek was the quintessential monitor and subject star, setting new world information within the 5,000m, 10,000m and marathon – which he entered for the primary time since a last-minute choice. He’s the one athlete to have gained all three occasions in the identical sport.

Sprinter Marjorie Jackson turned Australia’s first feminine Olympic champion of the twentieth century, holding gold and world information within the 100 meters and 200 meters alike. Hungarian girls gained 7 of the 15 medals obtainable in swimming, whereas the boys had been topped Olympic soccer champions. And in equestrian competitions, as girls competed with males in blended occasions for the primary time, Denmark’s Lis Hartel gained the silver medal in dressage regardless of being paralyzed beneath the knees on account of polio.

a false begin

Helsinki was all set to host the Video games in 1940, however because of the outbreak of World Conflict II, preparations bought off to a nasty begin. However, with many venues already constructed, the Finnish capital took the chance to host the Video games after 12 years. They occurred when the Chilly Conflict was simply beginning. Amid fierce competitors between the Soviet Union and america, Helsinki welcomed 5,000 athletes from extra international locations than ever earlier than.

With a mixture of venues constructed for 1940 and new services supplied by Finland’s post-war reconstruction programme, Helsinki solid doubts on its potential to host the Video games. Since their intensive use and refurbishment, these Olympic venues are an everlasting legacy and are nonetheless central to metropolis life.

materials inheritance

The Video games had been held in a complete of 19 venues. Of those, 14 already existed, and 4 had been constructed particularly for the 1952 Video games; The short-term rowing stadium in Malahti was later demolished. In all, 15 are nonetheless in use at present.

One of many earlier buildings, the Olympic Stadium hosted athletics, present leaping and soccer, in addition to the opening and shutting ceremonies for 70,000 spectators. Since then used variously for air defence, tv broadcasts and personal weddings, it stays a widely known landmark and vantage level at present. Its marathon tower is 72.71 meters excessive – the size of Finnish hero Matti Jrvinen’s gold-winning javelin throw on the Olympic Video games Los Angeles 1932.

The stadium has undergone two renovations over the previous 70 years. Now a multi-purpose facility with a diminished capability of 40,000, it nonetheless hosts a spread of sporting and cultural occasions, together with greater than 20 totally different sports activities.

The World Athletics Championships, European Athletics Championships and UEFA Girls’s Euro have all taken place there, whereas the Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson and Madonna have all carried out on the venue. Within the meantime, vacationers proceed to go to the spectacular Sports activities Museum of Finland, which is situated within the western wing of the stadium. Yearly, the Olympic Stadium welcomes roughly 600,000 guests.

From herring to swimming

A two-minute bike experience away, Helsinki’s swimming stadium was constructed for the 1940 Video games, after which used to retailer herring and root greens for Finnish troopers in the course of the conflict. It hosted swimming, diving and water polo in 1952, and at present it has a 50-meter swimming pool, diving pool, kids’s pool, weightlifting space and extra. Open in the summertime months, it’s now not used for worldwide competitions, however welcomes roughly 300,000 guests every year. A number of soccer pitches, the velodrome and taiwallahti, are nonetheless used at present for soccer, biking and rowing respectively.

social heritage

Helsinki’s second run in staging the Olympic Summer season Video games greater than doubled its legacy of social housing. The 1940 Olympic Village – constructed to deal with 3,200 athletes – was residence to 500 households lengthy earlier than Helsinki’s second bid. In 1952, its considerably bigger twin accommodated 4,800 rivals in 545 flats unfold over 13 buildings. Additionally in Kapalia district it was transformed for social housing.

Each villages are nonetheless well-liked with residents, who respect their peaceable, leafy environment in addition to the standard of structure and building.

Volunteer Custom Begins

Helsinki 1952 is the second the Olympic custom of volunteering took off. The final summer season of 1948 noticed the primary Olympic volunteer drive – the “Austerity Olympics” – held in London amid meals rationing within the wake of the conflict. 4 years later, the Helsinki 1952 Organizing Committee started a completely volunteer choice course of and coaching, laying the strong basis for Olympic volunteering at present. Volunteers with quite a lot of expertise had been invited from numerous backgrounds. These included civil servants, newbie sports activities officers and bizarre residents. After his coaching, he helped present quite a lot of providers from translation to pitch upkeep.

In one other break with earlier reliance on the army or Boy Scout brigades, one in 4 of the two,192 volunteers had been girls, whose elevated participation in Olympic volunteering within the intervening years has helped advance gender equality.

“Helsinki 1952 remains to be alive at present, not simply in reminiscence of the previous Finnish residents,” mentioned Finnish Olympic Committee President Jan Vapavuri. “Town nonetheless retains its mark within the many Olympic venues that stay in Helsinki’s social heart. And cultural life. The Olympic motion can also be indebted to the organizers, who noticed the chance and worth of mobilizing civic volunteers. These had been every new Olympic Video games. an essential a part of his dwelling legacy.”

The seventieth anniversary of the Olympic Video games Helsinki 1952 might be marked by an “Olympic Day” occasion held in and across the Olympic Stadium on 20 July. Open and free to the general public, the occasion will present guests with the chance to attempt quite a lot of sports activities guided by trainers from native golf equipment. The 1952 Olympic swimming pool in addition to the Finnish Sports activities Museum might be open totally free. A VIP brunch on the Olympic Stadium will deliver collectively among the athletes from the 1952 Finnish Olympic workforce.

For extra details about the deliberate celebrations please go to (in Finnish solely)

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