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Come February, the eyes of the world will be focused on the Olympic Opening ceremonies at Rice-Eccles Stadium. See what changes have been made for that day.

It's estimated two thirds of the planet will be watching the Olympic Opening Ceremonies three weeks from tonight. The show is a huge spectacle. But during these games, the location is also expected to be one of the stars of the show.

In fact, Olympic organizers are calling Rice-Eccles Stadium one of the best venue sites ever. To us, it's Rice-Eccles Stadium. But in a few short weeks, it will be known to the world as the 2002 Winter Olympics Stadium.

The Salt Lake Organizing Committee took control of the stadium in November just after the last Ute football game. They have just a few weeks left to turn Rice into a world class Olympic venue. In order to prepare for the ceremonies, a few changes have taken place.

"The stadium board that came out was removed in two pieces," said Ron Cameron, Opening Ceremonies general manager. "We also removed in addition the video board for the production."

We've already gotten a sneak peek at the floor of the stadium earlier this month when the cauldron was unveiled. Another change to the stadium - extra seats.

More than 54-thousand people are expected to watch the opening ceremonies in person. An audience of that size will be a winter Olympics first.

"It seats a gigantic audience," said Don Mischer, producer of the Opening Ceremonies. "More people will witness the opening ceremonies at Rice Stadium than have ever witnessed any Winter Olympic event before."

But despite the size, organizers are also calling the stadium intimate.

"Rice-Eccles is fantastic. When my crews came, they were jumping up and down. It's a great venue. Even though you're in a football stadium, there's a sense of intimacy you never got in Sydney, Lillehammer and other venues. We're excited." Mischer said.

Cameron said, "Everyone is closer to the action. The field is small, it's more intimate, and will be more spectacular seemingly because of the closeness of it."

Since the television audience is estimated in the billions, organizers are also interested in how it will all appear on TV.

Dr. Stephen Wenn, Olympic expert from Laurier University, said, "Visually, the opening cremonies have a strong visual spectacle and component, so that's front and center."

Wayne McCormick, Olympic coordinator for the University of Utah, said, "The camera angles of Rice are among the most spectacular you can find and in addition you have the sandstone design of the towers to shoot from and ground level toward the mountains, both ways, it's going to look spectacular."

As for those lucky enough to be there in person:

"There's no experienc. It's electric. It's indescribable," Mischer said.

Preparing for this magical evening is an immense project but those involved say everything will be done on time. There is, however, one final detail they have no control over. The weather.

For that, they're appealing to Mother Nature to provide a little magic of her own.

"Twelve inches of fresh snow, the stadium is still, it's 36 degrees, no winds and as the ceremonies get to the last few segments, we'd like a light snow to start falling," Mischer said.

If the weather isn't cooperative planners say they have snow removal teams on call and prepared to clear Rice-Eccles field at a moments notice. Chances are it will be cold and with time spent with extra security getting in the stadium and a three hour program, those who attend will be out in the cold for quite a while.

The secret to staying warm is a lot of warm layers of clothing, a good hat and gloves, and a very warm pair of boots.