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Salt Lake having own Olympic party

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Want some Olympic-sized fun and entertainment that doesn't cost anything or require a ticket? Here's where to find it.

Salt Lake City is hosting its own Olympic Downtown Festival during the Games. Washington Square - the area that surrounds the City And County Building - will be Salt Lake City's Party Central.

More Info

Performance Schedule

Heated tents are constructed, and workers are busy creating space for a dozen cultural exhibits. And part of the attraction is an old movie set. This is supposed to be Salt Lake City, 1890's. There will be a working blacksmith and mountain men that will live here for the two weeks of the Olympics.

Other areas will offer an Internet cafe, karoke and interactive multi media exhibits.

"Spy Hop Productions, which is doing a kids digital art exhibit where children from throughout the state are going to get an opportunity to get a camera, capture their own Olympic images and then this will be created into a larger digital image," said John Sitner, the city's director of Olympic planning. "So they can find a piece of themselves in this big picture of the world."

But the real attraction is entertainment. Utah's diversity will be highlighted on the main stage from more than 3,000 performers.

From folks like the Saliva Sisters and the Saltairs, BYU dancers to Mambo Jumbo, choirs and cloggers. There is a lot for everyone.

"We really want to focus on Utah, Salt Lake City and what we've got to share with the world," Sitner said.

That's right, the 18-day event is free - except for food and drinks - including alcoholic beverages.

There will be plenty of places for folks to warm up and enjoy Utah entertainment and culture as part of their Olympic experience.

The festival starts Feb. 7 with a torch lighting ceremony and continues through Sunday Feb. 24.

Details You'll Need to Know

Main Street

Festival boundaries on Main Street are from South Temple to 400 South.

Open to the public daily 10:30 am - 1 am

Primary elements on Main St: Local vendor food & beverage kiosks; Information kiosks, multiple decorations; First aid stations manned by American Red Cross; Atmosphere entertainers; The Samsung zone; Downtown Festival art gallery

Washington Square

Hours:

Feb. 7-- 6 pm - Midnight

Feb. 8 and 24-- 4 pm - 1 am

Feb. 9-23-- 10:30 am - 1 am

It is a secure venue, meaning all guests will enter through a magnetometer (similar to the airport procedure). Personal belongings should be kept to a minimum.

Bags greater than 12" x 12" x 6" will not be permitted into Washington Square.

Dress warmly and/or appropriately for the weather.

Anticipate lines at the public entranceways, especially during peak evening hours.

Public entrances are at the corners of State St. and 400 South, and 200 East and 500 South.

Seating will be available in food structures as well as outdoors on the 200 East side of Washington Square.

Restroom trailers with 92 facilities will be located on the south side of the City County Building.

There is no designated parking. Guests are encouraged to visit utahcommuterlink.com to pre-determine the best means of traveling to Washington Square or Main Street.

Designated area for the public to obtain general Olympic information and Lost and Found.

Jumbotron will broadcast Olympic competition and events.

Washington Square Features

Food-- two large, heated structures will feature cafeteria-style dining provided by numerous Utah vendors.

Non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverage stations

Main Stage entertainment-- Performance schedule

Cultural Celebrations

KSL/Smith's Family Pin Trading

Spy Hop Productions/Smith's/KSL Olympic Multi-Media Project-- Interactive center designed for kids and "kids at heart."

Western experience-- Restored movie set provides the backdrop for mountain man rendezvous; nightly bluegrass and country western music; blacksmith shop; cowboy poetry; western food.

This information is subject to change.