COLORADO SPRINGS — In our exclusive new series Adventures with Alan, we’ll travel across Southern Colorado week-by-week to show you thrills and chills, hidden gems and well-known spots.
This week, we visit the United State Olympic and Paralympic Museum in downtown Colorado Springs for a fun and immersive day.
Located off of South Sierra Madre Street, the museum is home to 124 years of Olympic history, and features more than 460 Olympic and Paralympic artifacts.
What to expect when visiting the museum
Entering the museum, the first thing that you’ll be given at check-in is a personalized badge and your very own stylus.
The stylus will be used instead of your fingers to safely navigate through dozens of interactive screens found throughout the museum.
From the atrium and the impressive 40-foot LED screen located on the museum’s first floor, an elevator will take you to the third floor where your self-guided tour begins.
Introduction to the Games gallery
At the start of the tour, you’ll learn about the history of the ancient games, and the origin of the modern Olympic and Paralympic movements.
This area holds a collection of 38 torches, dating back to the 1936 games in Berlin, as well as the 2021 Tokyo games torch.
There’s also a really cool database housed in this section of the museum that can be used to find out information on every single Olympic and Paralympic athlete that’s represented our country.
That number currently stands at more than 12,000 U.S. athletes.
Athlete Training gallery
The Athlete Training areas is by far the most popular spot in the museum, according to the museum’s Director of Communications and Marketing Tommy Schield.
“The Athlete Training is just a lot of fun. What’s really unique about it is we worked with Team USA athletes to make sure that it’s an authentic and real experience,” said Schield.
On our visit to the museum, I first attempt to race against 1936 Olympic gold medalist Jessie Owens.
Even with a head start, Mr. Jessie Owens beats me by a long shot. No surprise there!
The athlete training area features six different sports for guests to try.
Besides track and field, there’s archery, goalball, alpine skiing, skeleton and sled hockey.
Our self-guided tour continues…
I could have spent hours playing in the Athlete Training area, but we decide to move onto the next section.
The Lab shows us how advancements in science and technology have played a key role in maximizing an athlete’s performance.
The museum features 10 different galleries, and each is just as impressive as the next week.
From The Lab, we walk next into the Parade of Nations.
It’s here that you can truly feel the rush of what it must be like for these athletes to walk in the opening ceremonies.
The next two galleries are dedicated to the summer and winter Olympic games.
Guests can use their badges to see exhibits some to life, which is another great interactive touch.
One of the final sections features a nearly complete collection of Olympic medals, and it’s truly remarkable to see with your own eyes all the different medals.
We end our day in the final gallery, the Medal Ceremony room. You can’t help but feel the emotions while watching dozens of medal ceremonies play out all around you. Much like the rest of the museum, this final gallery aims to put you right into the action with theses athletes.
The museum tells News 5 that they are taking all of the necessary precautions to keep both their guests and staff safe. It’s their number one priority according to Schield.
For more information about the museum, including the health and safety measures that the museum is taking for its guests, visit www.usopm.org.