1996 Summer Olympics

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Games of the XXVI Olympiad

Host city Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Nations participating 197
Athletes participating 10,320
(6,797 men, 3,523 women)
Events 271 in 26 sports
Opening ceremony July 19, 1996
Closing ceremony August 4, 1996
Officially opened by President Bill Clinton
Athlete's Oath Teresa Edwards
Judge's Oath Hobie Billingsley
Olympic Torch Muhammad Ali
Stadium Centennial Olympic Stadium

The 1996 Summer Olympics, formally known as the Games of the XXVI Olympiad and informally known as the Centennial Olympics, were held in 1996 in Atlanta, Georgia, United States. Atlanta was selected in September 1990 in Tokyo, Japan, above Athens, Belgrade, Manchester, Melbourne and Toronto.


[edit] Selection

Some felt Athens should have had the right to host the games because it marked the 100th anniversary of the modern Olympic games. The IOC instead voted for Atlanta citing the reasoning behind this decision was that Athens' infrastructure could not be improved enough in time to successfully host the Games. Athens would eventually win the right to host the 2004 Summer Olympics in 1997. Though there were claims that executives in Atlanta had bribed the IOC officials[citation needed], these were never substantiated though they prompted other winning bids from Nagano, Sydney, and Salt Lake City to be more carefully scrutinized.

[edit] Incidents

Though the Games made a financial profit, it was not without issues. Numerous observers considered the Games "over commercialized". Problems of traffic congestion sometimes made travel between venues difficult. More seriously, the Centennial Olympic Park bombing of July 27, 1996, killed spectator Alice Hawthorne and wounded 111 others, and elicited the death of Melih Uzunyol by heart attack. Even with the problems, IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch said, in his closing speech, "Well done, Atlanta", although did not say they had been the best Olympics yet, which he said at every other Olympic closing ceremony while he was the IOC's president.

[edit] Effect on the city

The games had a profound impact on the city of Atlanta and many in the Atlanta metro area consider the games to be instrumental in transforming Atlanta into the more modern city it has become since. Examples of this are the mid-rise dormitories built for the Olympic village which became the first residential housing for Georgia State University and Turner Field which was a modification of the original Centennial Olympic Stadium. The Atlanta Braves baseball team now makes it home at one of the stadiums built for the games. Also Centennial Olympic Park was built for the events and is still in use. It is interesting to note that Atlanta used no public money to finance the games, which cost US$1.8 billion to host. It was the first city in Olympic history to solely use ticket sales, commercial endorsements and advertising, and private money to fund the hosting of an Olympic games. The consequence of this, however, was that many feel that the games in Atlanta were over-commercialized and were less exciting and sensational than previous games.

[edit] Songs and themes

The Olympiad's official theme, Summon the Heroes, was written by John Williams, making it the third Olympiad for which he has composed. The song "The Power of the Dream", composed by Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds and David Foster, with words by Linda Thompson was performed in the opening ceremony by Céline Dion accompanied by Foster and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Centennial Choir. Gladys Knight sung "Georgia on My Mind", Georgia's official state song, at the opening ceremony. The closing ceremony featured Gloria Estefan singing "Reach", the official theme song of the 1996 Olympics.

[edit] Highlights

Image:JO Atlanta 1996 - Stade.jpg
Women's 100 m hurdles at the Olympic stadium

[edit] Venues

[edit] Medals awarded

See the medal winners, ordered by sport:

[edit] Participating nations

A total of 197 nations were represented at the 1996 Games.

[edit] Medal count

These are the top ten nations that won medals at these Games:

 Rank  Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1 Image:Flag of the United States.svg United States (host nation) 44 32 25 101
2 Image:Flag of Russia (bordered).svg Russia 26 21 16 63
3 Image:Flag of Germany.svg Germany 20 18 27 65
4 Image:Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg China 16 22 12 50
5 Image:Flag of France.svg France 15 7 15 37
6 Image:Flag of Italy.svg Italy 13 10 12 35
7 Image:Flag of Australia.svg Australia 9 9 23 41
8 Image:Flag of Cuba.svg Cuba 9 8 8 25
9 Image:Flag of Ukraine.svg Ukraine 9 2 12 23
10 Image:Flag of South Korea (bordered).svg South Korea 7 15 5 27

[edit] Leading medal winners

Men's leading medal winners at the Atlanta games
Pos Athlete's name Sport / discipline Gold Silver Bronze Total
1Image:Flag of Russia (bordered).svg Alexei Nemov (RUS) Gymnastics2136
2Image:Flag of the United States.svg Gary Hall Jr. (USA) Swimming2204
Image:Flag of Russia (bordered).svg Aleksandr Popov (RUS) Swimming2204
4Image:Flag of the United States.svg Josh Davis (USA) Swimming3003
5Image:Flag of Russia (bordered).svg Denis Pankratov (RUS) Swimming2103
6Image:Flag of Australia.svg Daniel Kowalski (AUS) Swimming0123
7Image:Flag of Belarus.svg Vitaly Scherbo (BLR) Gymnastics0033

Women's leading medal winners at the Atlanta games
Pos Athlete's name Sport / discipline Gold Silver Bronze Total
1Image:Flag of the United States.svg Amy Van Dyken (USA) Swimming4004
2Image:Flag of Ireland (bordered).svg Michelle Smith (IRL) Swimming3014
3Image:Flag of the United States.svg Angel Martino (USA) Swimming2024
4Image:Flag of Romania.svg Simona Amânar (ROM) Gymnastics1124
5Image:Flag of Germany.svg Dagmar Hase (GER) Swimming0314
6Image:Flag of Romania.svg Gina Gogean (ROM) Gymnastics0134
7Image:Flag of the United States.svg Jenny Thompson (USA) Swimming3003
8Image:Flag of Ukraine.svg Lilia Podkopayeva (UKR) Gymnastics2103
9Image:Flag of the United States.svg Amanda Beard (USA) Swimming1203
Image:Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Jingyi Le (CHN) Swimming1203
Image:Flag of the United States.svg Wendy Hedgepeth (USA) Swimming1203
12Image:Flag of Australia.svg Susan O'Neill (AUS) Swimming1113
13Image:Flag of Jamaica.svg Merlene Ottey (JAM) Athletics0213
Image:Flag of Germany.svg Franziska van Almsick (GER) Swimming0213
15Image:Flag of Germany.svg Sandra Völker (GER) Swimming0123

[edit] See also

[edit] Olympics with significant criminal incidents

[edit] External links

Olympic Games}"> |
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SportsMedal countsNOCs
Summer Games: 1896, 1900, 1904, 19061, 1908, 1912, (1916)2, 1920, 1924, 1928, 1932, 1936, (1940)2, (1944)2, 1948, 1952, 1956, 1960, 1964, 1968, 1972, 1976, 1980, 1984, 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, 2016, 2020, 2024
Winter Games: 1924, 1928, 1932, 1936, (1940)2, (1944)2, 1948, 1952, 1956, 1960, 1964, 1968, 1972, 1976, 1980, 1984, 1988, 1992, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, 2014, 2018, 2022
Athens 2004Turin 2006Beijing 2008Vancouver 2010London 2012


Atlanta history
1861 Atlanta in the Civil War | 1864 Atlanta Campaign | 1868 Georgia State Capitol moved | 1881 International Cotton Exposition | 1888 Coca-Cola invented | 1890 Grady Memorial Hospital opens | 1895 Cotton States and International Exposition | 1915 Leo Frank lynching | 1926 Candler Field opens | 1935 Techwood Homes opens | 1946 CDC opens | 1960s American civil rights movement | 1979 MARTA opens | 1980 Hartsfield Airport opens | 1988 Democratic National Convention | 1989 Underground Atlanta reopens | 1994 Super Bowl XXVIII | 1996 Centennial Olympics | 2000 Super Bowl XXXIV

bs:XXVI. Olimpijske igre - Atlanta 1996.

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1996 Summer Olympics

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