The Lake Tahoe Winter Games Exploratory Committee announced that five esteemed U.S. Olympians have agreed to join its efforts to develop a bid for the Tahoe region for the Winter Olympics.
The announcement comes just weeks after the LTWGEC formed itself with civic leaders from both California and Nevada. The new organization supersedes two organizations that were previously exploring bids, the Sacramento based California Winter Games Coalition and the Reno based Reno-Lake Tahoe Winter Games Coalition.
The five Olympians Andy Gabel, Bret Hedican, Jonny Moseley, Tamara McKinney, and Kristi Yamaguchi represent a diverse array of Winter Olympic sports including Downhill Skiing, Hockey, Women’s Figure Skating, Speed Skating and Freestyle Skiing.
“We are delighted to have such an impressive array of Olympians join our effort,” said Andy Wirth, CEO of Squaw Valley/Alpine Resorts and Acting Chair of the LTWGEC. “The Olympic experience starts with the athletes themselves. We look forward to integrating the influence of these great champions into each and every aspect of our effort.”
“As a four-time Olympian, I've seen some of the best venues in the world,” said Andy Gabel ('88, '92', '94, '98 Speed Skating). “I know that Lake Tahoe would be an amazing place for the Winter Games.”
“As Olympians, we are used to tough challenges and intense competition,” said Bret Hedican (Albertville ’92, Turin ’06 Ice Hockey). “I’m proud to be a part of this team as it explores a potential bid. I’d put our region – with all of its natural beauty and incredible human creativity up against any place in the world.”
“Lake Tahoe is one of the most beautiful places on the planet,” said Jonny Moseley (Nagano ‘98 Freestyle Skiing). “In 1960, the world took a chance on making Squaw Valley it's choice for the Olympics. We’re proud to invite everyone back.”
“I grew up here in Lake Tahoe,” said Tamara McKinney (Sarajevo ’94 Downhill Skiing). “It is a magical place with great mountains that would anchor some of the most breathtaking downhill skiing events in history.
Standing atop one of our peaks and looking at that beautiful Lake Tahoe will be a memory that everyone – Olympians and spectators alike will never forget.”
“The Olympic flame still burns in Lake Tahoe to this day. It inspires all of us to be better, work harder and achieve more,” said Kristi Yamaguchi (Albertville ’92 Figure Skating) “The members of the Olympic family on our team are ready to show the world the astounding assets this region has to offer the world.” “We’re especially proud to be doing this as a family,” Yamaguchi continued, referring to her husband and fellow committee member Bret Hedican. “As parents, as partners and as Olympians, we are brimming with enthusiasm.”