The Olympics are a special time….
In which hundreds of countries from all over the world come together and celebrate the qualities that bind us together: sportsmanship and endurance. We asked J staff members to tell us what they’re looking forward to during the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea (and we sprinkled in a few fun facts, because what’s life without fun facts?).
Pam Kalinowski: Donor Stewardship Coordinator
Gah! I love the winter ones more than the summer, and I most look forward to: Bobsled, speed skating, and (believe it or not) curling! I got into curling so much during the Vancouver Olympics—I’ve even taken lessons!
Fun Fact #1: Israel is sending its largest-ever contingent to the Winter Games — 10 athletes, including seven figure skaters, an Alpine skier, a speed skater and Israel’s first skeleton competitor, Boston-born A.J. Edelman.
Jackee Woodman: Marketing Manager
I’m most excited to watch Luging. It’s the one winter Olympic sport that really gets me excited. Watching those daredevils tear down those icy tracks always get my heart pumping. Those people are fearless!
Fun Fact #2: The Jewish community is setting up a kosher pop-up restaurant and other services for visitors in town for the games.
Alexis Robbins: Content Coordinator
I love figure skating! I was a competitive figure skater as a kid and I really enjoy seeing all of the new talent every four years. I also like speed skating–Apolo Ohno was my favorite growing up, but J.R. Celski is pretty neat, too. I’ll be looking out for him this year.
Fun Fact #3: Be on the lookout for Evan Weinstock on Team USA! He’s on our bobsled team this year and is sure to give other bobsled teams a run for their money.
Trevor Fulton: Patron Services Manager, MACC
I have always loved the Winter Olympics. For the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics I was lucky enough to hold the torch on its journey across the country and have since always awaited the lighting of the torch for the games. And also, who isn’t stoked to see Shaun White back on the half pipe?
Fun Fact #4: If you see Itamar Biran (a decorated alpine skier) racing down the snowy slopes, you know you’re in for a treat. Competing for Israel in the 2018 Olympics, Biran, a native of London, will compete in giant slalom, super-G, slalom, and combined. He has dual British-Israeli citizenship and decided for all international competitions, he would represent Israel.
Aliza Saper: Assistant Education Director, MACC
Watching the Olympic Games has always been something special my family and I do together. For three weeks, most of our dinners are enjoyed around the tv, gawking over athletic abilities that none of us possess. I’ve always been mesmerized with the possibility of having a career as an athlete…as an artist it just seems so strange.
Fun Fact #5: Wahoo! Colorado pride is in full effect. Arielle Gold, 21, a snowboarder, is a native of Steamboat Springs, Colorado. She won a gold medal in 2012 in the halfpipe event at the FIS Junior World Championships. She was on the 2014 Olympic team, but an injury stopped her from competing. But she’s back, better than ever, and ready to compete for Team USA!
Be sure to check out the 2018 Winter Olympics and cheer on your favorite athletes. There’s nothing better than some good ol’ fashioned Olympic pride! If you want to read more about some riveting Jewish storylines to watch for during the games, look no further.