Everett may get Olympic tie-in

EVERETT – Beginning in summer 2005, Olympic athletes could be speed skating or playing volleyball at the Everett Events Center.

Everett’s arena at 2000 Hewitt Ave. would be one of a handful of venues regionwide to host international athletes in a Goodwill Games-style competition.

The event, to be called the USA-China Invitational, is being planned as part the “Road to Beijing,” the warm-up for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

The Seattle Organizing Committee is planning the games, which could run for three consecutive summers, with events scheduled from Tacoma to Everett.

The sports would range from basketball to badminton and could draw Olympic teams from China, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United States.

The festival could include as many as 1,000 athletes, organizers said, and could feature both summer and winter games.

Many details of the event are still up in the air, and official announcement of the games won’t come until July, said Kim Bedier, general manager for the Everett Events Center.

Seattle sports promoter Bob Walsh, who helped bring three NCAA Final Four basketball tournaments and the 1990 Goodwill Games to the area, spearheaded the effort to organize the competition by speaking to the U.S. Olympic Committee.

Letters of commitment to participate have been sent by both the U.S. Olympic Committee and the Chinese Olympic Committee to the Seattle Organizing Committee.

Walsh could not be reached for comment, nor could Bill Carney of the Seattle Organizing Committee.

“They’ve been chatting with us about several possible events, one being short-track speed skating and the other being volleyball,” Bedier said.

The events center ice rink would need to be expanded from National Hockey League to Olympic-sized ice, but Bedier said the events center could find a way to make it work.

“I think it’s fabulous on a number of levels,” she said. “It gives us Olympic involvement.”

Mark Funk, a spokesman for County Executive Aaron Reardon, said organizers of the games approached Snohomish County and Everett leaders in March.

“I know that the organizing committee is very serious about Everett,” Funk said. “We’re very excited about this. We think this is a wonderful opportunity to get Everett connected to what we believe is going to be an ongoing international event.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Reporter Jennifer Warnick: 425-339-3429 or jwarnick@heraldnet.com.

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

A view of one of the potential locations of the new Aquasox stadium on Monday, Feb. 26, 2024 in Everett, Washington. The site sits between Hewitt Avenue, Broadway, Pacific Avenue and the railroad. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
20 businesses could be demolished for downtown Everett stadium

Some business owners say the city didn’t tell them of plans for a new AquaSox stadium that could displace their businesses.

Kathy Purviance-Snow poses for a photo in her computer lab at Snohomish High School on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, in Snohomish, WA. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
To ban or embrace ChatGPT? Local teachers fight AI with AI — or don’t

“It has fundamentally changed my teaching in really stressful and exciting ways,” an EvCC teacher said. At all levels of education, ChatGPT poses a tricky question.

In this Feb. 5, 2018, file photo a Boeing 737 MAX 7 is displayed during a debut for employees and media of the new jet in Renton, Wash. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)
FAA gives Boeing 90 days to develop plan to fix quality, safety issues

The agency’s ultimatum comes a day after a meeting with CEO Dave Calhoun and other top Boeing officials in Washington, D.C.

A man walks by Pfizer headquarters, Friday, Feb. 5, 2021, in New York. Pfizer will spend about $43 billion to buy Seagen and broaden its reach into cancer treatments, the pharmaceutical giant said. (AP Photo / Mark Lennihan, File)
Pfizer backs out of Everett manufacturing plant after $43B Seagen deal

Pfizer finalized the acquisition of the Bothell-based cancer drug developer in December.

SonShine Preschool inside First Baptist Church Monroe is pictured Friday, March 1, 2024, in Monroe, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
SonShine preschool in Monroe to close at the end of the year

The preschool, operated by First Baptist Church, served kids for 25 years. School leadership did not explain the reason behind the closure.

Cars drive through snow along I-5 in Snohomish County, Washington on Thursday, Jan. 11, 2024.  (Annie Barker / The Herald)
In March, 7 p.m. sunsets are back for Western Washington

Washingtonians will finally start seeing more sun starting March 10. But a little more winter could be on the way first.

One of the parking lots at Stevens Pass Thursday afternoon on December 30, 2021.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Stevens Pass to charge $20 for parking reservations on busy days

Two-thirds of spaces will remain free for early arrivers on weekends. Cars with four or more occupants can also park free.

Days after shootout with Lynnwood police, suspect checks into hospital

Police learned the 18-year-old was in a hospital in Portland, Oregon. His alleged role in the shooting remained unclear.

Snohomish County pharmacy tech accused of stealing 2,500 opioid pills

Rachel Langdon stole oxycodone while working at a Snohomish County pharmacy, according to state Department of Health allegations.

Patrick Kunz speaks during his sentencing on Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024, at Snohomish County Superior Court in Everett, Washington.(Annie Barker / The Herald)
Everett gymnastics coach who spied on students sentenced to 6 months

Patrick Kunz, 47, pleaded guilty to charges of voyuerism and possession of child pornography last month.

Traffic moves along Highway 526 in front of Boeing’s Everett Production Facility on Nov. 28, 2022, in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / Sound Publishing)
Everett transgender mechanic alleges Boeing treated her ‘like a zoo animal’

For years, Boeing allowed toxicity “to fester and grow” at its Everett factory, according to Rachel Rasmussen, an employee from 1989 to 2024.

Everett police officers survey the scene of a shooting along East Casino Road on Friday, Oct. 13, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Washington’s 5th police academy could be in Snohomish County

A new academy in Northwest Washington would help clear a lengthy wait list for new police hires to get training.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.