By Josh Barr
The United States Olympic & Paralympic Museum announced that it will open to the public on Thursday, July 30, 2020.
Located in southwest downtown Colorado Springs – Olympic City USA – the Museum is a one-of-a-kind tribute to the Olympic and Paralympic movements with Team USA athletes at the center of the experience.
“The stories of our Olympians and Paralympians are the stories of this nation’s history,” Museum Chief Executive Officer Christopher Liedel said. “Every American can see themselves in the members of Team USA and will be inspired by their dedication, perseverance and respect for the Olympic and Paralympic values. The Museum has the unique privilege of telling these stories and we are ready and excited to share them with the world.”
Slightly more than three years since groundbreaking, the Museum has been hailed one of the most anticipated building openings of 2020, receiving accolades from Smithsonian magazine, The New York Times, Architectural Digest and Conde Nast Traveler, among others.
The 60,000-square foot building features 12 galleries following a narrative arc that takes guests through an Olympic or Paralympic athlete’s journey. The galleries include: Hall of Fame; Introduction to Olympism; Athlete Training; The Lab; Parade of Nations; Summer Games; Winter Games; The World Watches; Medal Collection; Final Film entitled To Take Part; Medal Ceremony; and a frequently updated rotating gallery.
The Museum is one of the most accessible and interactive museums in the world, designed so each guest fully experiences all the Museum has to offer. With its universal design and technology capabilities, guests can customize their sports preferences and accessibility needs for a tour that is uniquely their own. Team USA athletes were involved and consulted throughout the project to achieve this goal of authentic experience and inclusive design. The Museum is ADA compliant throughout.
The Museum is a proud member of the International Olympic Committee’s Olympic Museums Network and is the only comprehensive Olympic or Paralympic museum in the United States. Open seven days a week, the Museum is providing timed ticketing and various wellness procedures to ensure guest safety.
“The Olympic and Paralympic alumni community is excited that we now have a physical home for our stories in Olympic City USA, as well as a place for our families and friends to gather and celebrate,” said Benita Fitzgerald Mosley, 1984 Olympic champion and member of the Museum Board of Directors. “We hope that every U.S. Olympian and Paralympian will find their way home to the Museum.”
The Museum Shop and Flame Café are connected to the Museum. The Museum Shop offers an impressive collection of Olympic and Paralympic merchandise and will also feature innovative technology, including a digital mirror, allowing guests to try on gear without using a changing room. Flame Café offers wood-fired Neapolitan-style pizza, gourmet salads, sandwiches, and much more from the frequently-changing menu planned by award-winning chef Nick Estell.
“Team USA and the Olympic and Paralympic Games have the incredible power to inspire and unite us, and I look forward to joining with fans from around the country and the world at the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Museum in celebration of great athletes and unforgettable moments,” U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee Chief Executive Officer Sarah Hirshland said. “This permanent tribute honors the history and commitment of Team USA athletes, and the stories and experiences found in the museum will make us proud to call ourselves supporters of Team USA, while also serving as inspiration for the next generation of Olympic and Paralympic athletes and fans.”
General admission ticket prices are as follows:
- Adults: $24.95
- Children (3-12): $14.95
- Seniors (65+): $19.95
- Military (active duty or retired) or First Responders with ID: $19.95
- Children 2 and under are free
Group tickets (15 or more)
- Adults: $17.95
- Children: $12.95
“The opening of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum is a significant milestone for the City of Colorado Springs – Olympic City USA,” said Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers. “The Museum is the first of five City for Champions venues to open to the public, and we look forward to welcoming both residents and visitors to Colorado Springs to experience this world-class facility. Not only will the Museum anchor the city’s southwest downtown redevelopment, it will also add significantly to our nearly half-billion dollar sports industry here in Colorado Springs for decades to come, and it will be a wonderful tribute to our long history and connection with the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic movements.”