Times the OlympicsWere Canceled And the Postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Games
they invaded China in 1937. The games were then rebooked for Helsinki, Finland, but after Nazi Germany invaded Poland in 1939 and started WWII, those games were scrapped as well. Since the fighting hadn’t ceased by the time the games were supposed to happen in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, in 1944, the Olympics were canceled again. Though the Olympics have happened on schedule since the end of WWII, the United States has not always participated. In 1980, when the U.S. boycotted the Olympics that were held in Moscow, Russia, in protest of the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan, 64 other nations followed suit. However, those games still went on as planned and 80 countries participated. The fact that major global conflicts are the only other events that have been catastrophic enough to affect the Olympics might be distressing and elevate anxiety about our current global health crisis. However, it’s important to keep in mind that the Olympics have only been postponed this time, not canceled. We’ll still get to cheer on our favorite Olympians next year.
In late March, amid the global spread of COVID-19, the International Olympic Committee announced the postponement of the 2020 Olympic Games. They were slated to take place in Tokyo, Japan, this summer, but they will now happen in the summer of 2021. While this is an unprecedented decision, it’s not the first time that major global events have affected the Olympic Games or which countries participated. Since the inception of the modern Olympic Games in 1896, they have been outright canceled three times — 1916, 1940, and 1944. The first cancellation of the Olympic Games happened during World War I. The German Empire was supposed to host the games in Berlin, but by the time 1916 rolled around, Europe was deep in the trenches of WWI. Many nations had sent their athletes to fight in the war, so the games were canceled. World War II caused the next two cancellations. The 1940 Olympics were initially scheduled to be held in Tokyo. It would have been the first time the games were hosted by a non- Western country, but Japan forfeited the right to host when Summer is here, and people are ready to get outdoors and enjoy all the Pacific Northwest has to offer. After being stuck at home for the past few months, everyone is excited to stretch their legs. Thankfully, there are many hiking opportunities around the Seattle area, making it easy to get out for an afternoon getaway. Even better, many of our local trails are accessible to those of all ages and abilities. Here are three great options. Skyline Trail Loop Located in Mount Rainier National Park, the trail is about 5.5 miles, but the loop is a relatively straightforward hike on a maintained trail. It’s largely flat, but there are some inclines to be mindful of. The great thing about Skyline is the view. It takes you within a snapshot’s distance of Mount Rainier, so you can enjoy the grand mountain and all of its surroundings, including a waterfall, unimpeded. The trail begins near Paradise Inn. Twin Falls Trail Generally accessible year-round, the Twin Falls Trail in Olallie State Park (along Interstate 90) is a great
A Breath of Fresh Air
3 Great Hikes for the Start of Summer
way to immerse yourself in nature without traveling too far from home. The 3.6-mile trail winds through a diverse forest full of maples, conifers, and so much more. As the name suggests, there are two waterfalls along the path. More experienced hikers can head to the Olallie Trail, a 20-mile trail, which offers an exceptional backcountry experience. Washington Park Arboretum Closer to home, the arboretum makes for a great morning or afternoon walk. It’s a great destination for anyone who doesn’t want to stray too far but still wants to get out and get moving. The arboretum even provides visitors with information on fall hikes, so you can get the most out of your adventure. Plus, it’s home to the Seattle Japanese Garden, which is always bursting with color. With any hike, it’s important to be prepared. Before hiking, be sure to check park websites for updates related to COVID-19 or weather-related closures. Plan accordingly and make sure you have all the gear you need before heading out, including water, snacks, and a first-aid kit. Stay safe and have fun!
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