"I think the way to become the best is to just have fun." -Shaun White, Olympic snowboarding champion
Growing up in the Rocky Mountain region, hats, mittens, ugly moon boots and winter ski trips were not an exotic vacation, but a way of life. Somehow, my parents always managed to bundle up their four children, load them into a "pre-owned" YMCA ski-swap equipment, and safely herd them down a mountain (despite our efforts to cause irreparable harm to ourselves and others). Coming from a childhood filled with kamikaze speed ski runs, it's probably no surprise that the winter Olympics hold a special place in my heart. When I found out that I had the opportunity to attend the opening weekend of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics, I packed up my hat and mittens (left the ugly moon boots at home) and jetted off for the trip of a lifetime. Hot trends observed along the way:
There's an app for that
The Official Mobile Spectator Guide iPhone app is a must have for all Winter Olympic fans. With maps, city information and venue information, it is a life saver in an unfamiliar city. For those fans spectators from home, this free app also provides a full Olympic event schedule and up to the minute Olympic results along with pertinent information on all events. Who knew a curling stone weighs 19.1 kilograms? This kid.
Headgear is a must
Despite the fact that this year's Olympics are estimated as the warmest winter Olympics to date (dang Al Gore!), the damp fog and misty rain rolling in off the ocean are still downright chilly. Funky hats were the biggest fashion trend seen throughout Vancouver, spotted on trendy college co-eds to the Vancougars. The locals definitely know how to look fashionable, while staying warm and dry. Looks like winter will be around for a couple more weeks, so if you're looking to get some new winter wear, I'm loving this Eugenia Kim hat available in a number of chic colors and styles. Or stay au courant like the American athletes with their Ralph Lauren ear-flap hats in this similar hat on sale at Shopbop.
Hockey--Not a 2nd tier sport
Okay, so to say hockey is a new trend may be insulting to some fans, but it does seem trendy to be a hockey fan during the Olympics. While attending the woman's Sweden v. Switzerland Olympic hockey game, I jumped on the bandwagon for Canada's fave sport. The Canadians (men, women and children alike) are crazy hockey fans and I found myself at the most exciting, passionate sporting events that I have ever attended. Riding the Canadian hockey high, I'll be reading this biography on hockey superstar (and Olympic torch lighter) Wayne Gretzky.
Going green is certainly no trend at this point, but the city of Vancouver went to extra lengths to host eco-conscious games. All venues were lined with both organic waste and recyclable waste bins and patrons were reminded to dispose of waste accordingly. In an effort to product more eco-friendly public transport, the city is offering free transportation to all Olympic fans. I did my part by carrying a Vera Bradley Market Tote for all of the fun souvenirs I picked up. Check out these cute nylon totes from Baggu if you want to stay on trend.
image source: Lindsey Vonn: Associated Press, iPhone app: lint-pocket.com, hat: eugeniakim.com, nylon totes: baggubag.com