Thursday, July 17, 2014

Olympic museum strikes deal with USOC

Posted By on Thu, Jul 17, 2014 at 12:21 PM

Olympic Museum makes an important announcement.
  • Olympic Museum makes an important announcement.
The effort to build a U.S. Olympic Museum as part of City for Champions tourism venture has hit a milestone by reaching an agreement with the U.S. Olympic Committee, museum backers said in a news release today.

In the release, Dick Celeste, who's heading the museum effort, says fund-raising will now begin in earnest, with hopes of raising $70 million in donations.

City for Champions is a tourism package that proposes to build four projects. Besides the museum, it would build a downtown stadium, sports medicine center at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and a visitors center at the Air Force Academy. The state has agreed to allocate $120.5 million in state sales tax in the next 30 years to C4C; the money would come from 13.08 percent of the state tax collected beyond the baseline taxes collected as of December 2013. The rest of the money will come from donations and local sales taxes, officials have said.

We asked the museum folks whether the agreement with the USOC includes permission to use the logo and were told: "We are not at liberty to discuss specific terms of the agreement."

Here's the release:

The United States Olympic Museum announced today that it has signed a 30-year agreement with the United States Olympic Committee, renewable in 10-year increments.

Richard Celeste, President of the U.S. Olympic Museum Board of Directors, stated, “This agreement is the result of nearly two years of effort on the part of a group of dedicated citizens who share a vision of building a world-class museum dedicated to the values of the Olympic and Paralympic movements and the efforts and achievements of the U.S. athletes of the modern games. We are grateful to the leadership of the USOC for the confidence they have placed in us. We will strive to achieve the same level of excellence in the planned museum experience that characterizes the very best of our Olympians and Paralympians.”

The agreement acknowledges that the non-profit U.S. Olympic Museum was formed to develop, build, own and operate a state-of-the-art, iconic museum in downtown Colorado Springs to include:
1) A curated collection of historically significant artifacts associated with the United States’ participation in the Olympic and Paralympic Games
2) Interactive exhibits with video and audio presentations, facilities for temporary exhibitions and permanent collections relating to the U.S. and global Olympic and Paralympic movements to immerse visitors in the drama and exhilaration of Olympic and Paralympic competition, and capacity to host special celebrations and events
3) Home to the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame dedicated to American athletes who have followed their dreams

Scott Blackmun, CEO of the USOC stated, “The agreement reached this week ensures that the U.S. Olympic Museum will be the type of world-class experience that fans of Team USA and the Olympic and Paralympic Games expect, and we’re pleased to contribute to the museum’s long-term success. I’d like to thank Dick Celeste for his tireless efforts on behalf of the museum and his continued commitment to making the Pikes Peak region an even better place to live and work.”

Celeste added, “With the signing of this agreement, the effort to raise the funding required to move forward will begin in earnest. Our goal is to secure at least $70 million in private donations in order to build an inspiring and extraordinarily dynamic venue. In the process, we believe this can significantly lift tourism visits to Colorado Springs, kick-start activity in the Southwest Urban Renewal Area, and ideally create a corridor that links downtown directly into America the Beautiful Park.”

Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach stated, "This is a significant milestone in the process of building a United States Olympic Museum in Colorado Springs. I appreciate the efforts of the United States Olympic Committee and the United States Olympic Museum Corporation in completing this agreement. We are proud to be the home of the USOC and a future Olympic Museum and we are truly becoming America’s Olympic City."

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