There probably isn’t a sporting event more watched than the Olympics. This year, roughly 21 million people will tune in to watch athletes compete in winter sports like figure skating, bobsledding, and alpine skiing.
For me, one of the most fascinating sports featured in the Olympics is biathlon. Like several other skiing events, biathlon evolved from 18th century Norwegian military exercises. It wasn’t officially allowed into the Olympics until 1960 because the rules were disputed, and women didn’t compete until 1992. In 2014, mixed relays with men and women competing in pairs were introduced.
Contestants ski though a course that is divided with shooting rounds with their rifle strapped to their back. At each shooting round, skiers must hit 5 targets. For each missed target, skiers take a penalty lap or have a minute added to their time depending on the specific event, of which their are eleven total. It is a unique sport that requires endurance, mental toughness, and steady hands.
The opening ceremony is on Friday, February 8th, but competition starts the day before with Curling, Alpine Skiing, and Ski Jumping. The biathlon events start Saturday, February 10th, and NBC has a full schedule here.
National Inventors Day – February 11
Declared by Ronald Reagan in 1983 to celebrate all inventors, the holiday falls on Thomas Edison’s Birthday.
Mardi Gras – February 13th
Final day before the beginning of Lent, let the good times roll!
Jupiter will be the brightest point in the sky on Monday, Feb. 5th. Look for Mars just below it as well.
The Radical Story of Patty Hearst– A new documentary miniseries, airs February 11th on CNN. CNN’s documentaries are usually very detailed and engrossing, this case seems like a perfect fit for the channels style.
Channel Zero: Butchers Block, series premiere February 7th on Syfy. This season of the anthology centers around a slew of disappearances related to mysterious staircases in rundown neighborhoods.
Special Olympics events are held in all 50 states in the US and around the world. Each event requires donations and volunteers to run smoothly and be a memorable event for the athletes who compete. Visit here for a list of countries that hold events to volunteer locally.