Posted by: janvozenilek | February 11, 2010

February 10, 2010

Day 1 – I made my way to Vancouver this morning and one of the first things I noticed once I got downtown was the overwhelming Police and security presence.  They seem to be on almost every corner.  I parked my car and walked towards Canada Place, where I thought I’d get a fabulous view of the new Convention Center.  I was quite surprised when I noticed these tall blue fences everywhere, blocking all the views.  I couldn’t resist and asked an officer why the blue fence. He told me it’s for security reasons. That if too many people gathered along the ‘regular’ railing, they may fall over the edge into the water. Hmmmm…

My first stop was at the accreditation building, where I got my accreditation card.  Then off to the IBC, International Broadcast Center, which is in the brand new Vancouver convention center.

Canada Place, with it’s beautiful blue fence, blocking the nice views. 🙂

A massive suspended sphere of the world hangs about the entrance to the IBC. It spins like the real world and at night is lit up from the inside! Awesome!!

These huge monitors had live HD video streams from all over the city, including Whistler.

Inside the edit bay of the Czech TV broadcast booth.

My media accreditation card… the ‘infinity’ logo means that we have unlimited access to all the sporting venues… which is really exciting.

My colleague and friend Jiri Bakala from Kelowna. He is the other local Canadian (originally from the Czech Republic) camera operator that the network hired. He also brought along his editing system and will be doing regular editing as well.

Our first assignment was to shoot a press conference at the Robson Square Media Center. This press conference was by Sumac Ridge winery, who is an official Olympic supplier. We got to meet the winemaker, Mark Wendenburg as well as founder and president Harry McWatters.

We got to taste their special Olympic sparkling wine called, Tribute. It was wonderful.

Getting into the building was like Fort Knox. Metal detectors, x-ray machines… and even with our Media passes, as we didn’t quite make the ‘guest list’, we had to be escorted downstairs to the press conference.

We then drove to the Bay store on Georgia and Granville and filmed an interview with Harry McWatters. He was a really sweet, kind nice guy.

A nice bowl of soup followed at the Bay deli and for a second I had to switch modes, when I was confronted by stacks and stacks of styrofoam containers, as the ONLY container choice for my soup.   After a great conversation with the manager, she informed us that in fact in a few days they are getting rid of all of those and bringing in washable bowls. Even the plastic spoons will be gone, replaced by biodegradable wooden spoons. What wonderful news!  But as their new bowls haven’t arrived yet,  she had to look through her cubboards and was able to find us a couple of ceramic bowls.  Metal spoons only came in ‘tea spoon size’… but it made our soup last that much longer. 🙂

Getting around the city has been so far the most challenging part. Lots of closed roads, most street parking removed, Olympic lanes in effect… it’s a mess. And most of our day was spent just getting from one place to the next.. and all just within downtown.

In the evening we dropped our gear off at the IBC and on our way out noticed one of the monitors in the edit suite, running a live feed of the Opening Ceremonies rehearsal from BC Place Stadium.  Across the middle of the screen in black letters it said: “Not for broadcast”.  We got a sneak peak of the show and it looks spectacular.  The native theme felt a bit over done, but can’t quite say until we get to see and hear it all this Friday.  Make sure you tune in. It starts at 6pm Pacific Time this Friday, Feb 12th.

Here is a link to the full schedule:  http://www.vancouver2010.com/olympic-schedule-results/

And here is a link to the Robson Square Media Center with a couple of HD live cameras:  http://www.bcmediacentre.ca/files/video-bcmc-livechannel.php

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Responses

  1. Let me be one of the first to say how excited I am that you’re doing this, Jan, and will be following your blog on a regular basis… Love the pics, and can’t be there myself, so I’ll be living vicariously through your experience. Great links, too… Love the link to the live webcam at Robson Square. Thank you, Jan!!!

  2. Looks like you got your accreditation ok. Awesome. I understand from my colleagues, approving those were quite the chore. I look forward to seeing all this stuff we otherwise wouldn’t get to see! Enjoy and thanks Jan!

  3. Hey Jan – what an opportunity you have! I am sure yu will do an awesome job!!! I look forward to following your blog!

    Best regards,
    Steve and family


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