RIO DE JANEIRO (MEDIA GENERAL) — Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the modern Olympics, famously said, “The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning, but taking part.”
For a journalist, taking part is a great assignment, but the most important thing is hitting your deadlines. And the games present a challenge unlike any other.
That’s especially true in the sprawling city of Rio de Janeiro, home to more than 6 million people and the 2016 Summer Olympics. Getting to and from the venues, which are set up in four clusters, is nearly as challenging as getting through multiple security checkpoints simply to get into the media room.
Few people know the process better than Dave Calabro, who is covering his seventh Olympics for WTHR, the NBC affiliate out of Indianapolis.
“Never ending dealing with logistics and technology, so you have to be patient and take one day at a time,” he said.
Calabro is among more than 25,000 journalists with credentials to cover the games. Like 24 Hour News 8 Sports Director Jack Doles, who’s on the job for the Media General corporation, he’s working out of a makeshift newsroom in the NBC wing of the International Broadcast Center.
“You try to have fun with it, stay in the right frame of mind and realize we’re talking about sports here,” Calabro said. “We’re not saving babies; this isn’t life or death stuff.”
Opening ceremonies are scheduled for Friday and the games wrap on Aug. 21.