Thursday, September 12, 2013

Town Planning an Olympic Event

The following item is for my town planner amigo, Wayne . . .

Wrestling has regained its place on the Olympic Games sports roster after a vote by International Olympic Committee members in Buenos Aires. It had been controversially dropped as an Olympic sport by the IOC Executive Board in February 2013.

- News report

The above news report brought to mind some defunct Olympics events, not early events such as who could swim the furthest underwater holding one's breath, but events such as town planning.

Town planning??

From 1928 to 1948 the Olympic Games included Town Planning as one of its events. 

Between 1912 and 1948 Olympic medals were awarded for competition in the categories of architecture (with a sub category of Town Planning introduced in 1928), literature, music, sculpture and painting, in accordance with the intentions of modern Olympics founder Pierre de Coubertin.  The entries had to be inspired by sport.

The 1948 London Olympics gold for Town Planning went to Yrio Lindegreen of Finland for the Centre of Athletics in Varkaus, Finland. 

The 1928 gold medal for architecture had been awarded to Jan Wils for his design of the Olympic Stadium used in the 1928 Olympics.

These arts events were dropped after the 1948 Olympics after a study revealed that nearly all of the past entrants in the arts categories had been professionals, whereas Olympic athletes were required to be amateurs. 

Since 1956 the Olympic cultural program has replaced arts events as Olympic sports.

By the way:

Two people have won medals in both sports and arts Olympic competition: Walter Winans of the US won gold in 1908 and silver in 1912 in the running deer shooting (shooting at a moving target shaped like a deer), plus a gold for sculpture; Alfred Hajos of Hungary won two gold in 1896 for swimming plus a silver for stadium design in 1924

Alfred Hajos

In 912 Pierre de Coubertin, under the pseudonym "Georges Hohrod and Martin Eschbach", entered Ode to Sport in the arts competition and won gold. A swab should have been called for. 

IOC Pres 1952-1971 Avery Brundage competed as an athlete at the 1912 Games and entered literary works at the 1932 and 1936 Olympics, earning an honorary mention in 1932. 

Avery Brundage

The oldest Olympic medal winner is Brit John Copley. He won a silver medal in the 1948 engravings and etchings competition when he was 73 years. 

Future Olympic medal winner John Copley and wife Ethel in the 1930’s

The oldest Olympic medalist outside the art competitions is Swedish shooter Oscar Swahn, who won his last medal at age 72.

Oscar Swahn competing in 1912.

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