Calgary, Alberta, hosted the winter Olympics back in 1988. Now, the International Olympic Committee has invited Calgary to compete for the 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, but Calgarians, many of whom remember the first event, are not yet enthusiastic supporters.
Stockholm, Sweden and Milan-Cortina, Italy, also got the IOC’s invitation to bid for 2026 in a members vote today in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where the Youth Olympic Games are running currently.
Calgary is holding a Nov. 13 plebiscite in an effort to get the city behind the bid, so the international campaign can soon begin, according to Calgary 2026 board chair Scott Hutcheson.
“Our view is we need to take care of our domestic interests first, make sure Calgarians are informed, make sure we’re listening to Calgarians and that they understand what is in their prospective bid,” Hutcheson told The Canadian Press from Buenos Aires.
Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi says he’s concerned the federal government hasn’t provided a timeline for announcing its funding intentions for a possible Calgary Winter Olympics.
“I don’t think it’s fair to ask people to vote without the information, but we really do need to make sure our partners at the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada are ready to have that information in plenty of time before the plebiscite,” Nenshi said today.
(With files from CBC)