The Minutiae: Of Medal Dreams and Collard Greens

Get full access to Outside Learn, our online education hub featuring in-depth fitness, nutrition, and adventure courses and more than 2,000 instructional videos when you sign up for Outside+.

Outside magazine, August 1996

The Minutiae: Of Medal Dreams and Collard Greens

Behind the scenes, actuarially speaking, at Atlanta’s shining moment
By Katie Arnold and Cory Johnson

Established “quiet time” for athletes at the Olympic Village: 10 p.m.
Closing time at the Cheetah Lounge, a nude dance club across the street
from the Olympic Village: 4 a.m.
Number of state and local law enforcement officials
to be deployed at Olympic venues: 18,000
Number of federal troops: 14,000
Number of gun-related homicides in Atlanta last year: 122
Number of security guards enlisted to protect the Olympic mascot, Izzy: 42
Number of pieces of mail Izzy has received from children to date: 300,000
Percentage of this mail that contains disparaging remarks about Izzy: 20
Longest time for an Olympic event
(a wrestling match at the 1912 Games): 11 hours, 40 minutes
Time it took Sherman’s troops to storm Atlanta: seven hours
Number of nations making their first Olympic appearance at this year’s Games: 28
Percentage of athletes in the 1996 Games who are women: 35.3
Percent increase since 1992 in number of women competing in the Summer Olympics: 40
Percent increase since 1984 in number of Summer Olympics events: 23
Number of events removed from the Olympic lineup since 1992: six
Total area, in square feet, of wildflowers planted
during recent “Beautify Atlanta” effort: 1.5 million
Tons of trash expected to be collected during the Games: 10,000
Number of portable toilets ordered for Olympic venues: 1,800
Approximate number of calories the average Olympic athlete consumes in a day: 6,000
Size, in square feet, of the Olympic Village’s main dining hall refrigerator: 7,020
Pounds of collard greens to be consumed at the Olympic village: 8,000
Number of peaches: 400,000
Cost incurred by the Olympic Committee to administer and process
2,000 drug tests: $2 million
Number of languages the Olympic Village switchboard will be capable of translating: 26
Number of translators hired to work at the Olympic Village: 1,500
Number of working press credentials issued for the Atlanta Games: 15,000
Number of bus drivers hired by the Olympic Transportation System: 4,400
Estimated number of hours an Olympic spectator will stand in line
during a two-week stay in Atlanta: 21
Face value of a ticket for Olympic track and field finals: $75
Price New York City scalpers were charging in April
for a track and field finals ticket: $750
Advertised rental price of one “Southern colonial mansion”
during the Games: $6,000 per day
Minimum cost to be an official 1996 Olympic Games sponsor: $20 million
Predicted humidity at 8 a.m. on August 4, the start of the men’s marathon: 90 percent
Estimated temperature in Marathon, Greece, when courier ran famed 26.3 miles to Athens in 490 b.c.: 72
Fate of courier upon completing his run: death
Highest recorded temperature in Atlanta in the month of July: 105

promo logo