Cameron Thomsen wants to bring the 2024 Summer Olympic Games to the Twin Cities.
The 20-year-old Coon Rapids resident has launched a Facebook page to test the waters of public support and gain interest for such a venture.
“It would bring lots of business to many areas of Minnesota, make Minnesota a travel destination for years to come and it would be fun,” Thomsen said.
And his project has generated interest.
By early this week, Thomsen’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/2024TwinCities had 5,296 likes.
His is currently the second biggest Facebook page supporting a city for the 2024 Olympics, Thomsen said.
Thomsen, who has lived in Coon Rapids all his life, is a 2010 graduate of Coon Rapids High School and plans to attend the Institute of Production and Recording in Minneapolis this fall with an eye to a career in sound design/sound effects.
Watching the 2012 Summer Olympics from London, England, a few weeks ago sparked both his interest and enthusiasm to start the Facebook page.
“It is an effort to show community interest in bringing the Summer Olympics to the Twin Cities,” Thomsen said.
Thomsen launched his Facebook page Aug. 8 just as the London Olympic Games, which he watched on TV a great deal, was coming to an end.
His goal is to reach at least 100,000 likes on his Facebook page.
“They have been increasing exponentially,” Thomsen said.
And Thomsen has an app on his cell phone through which he can track the updates to his Facebook page, he said.
He has also had help on the Facebook project from his girlfriend, Madelyn Smith.
His goal is simple – to generate enough public support in a common goal to bring the Summer Olympic Games to the Twin Cities in 2024, according to Thomsen.
“It would be so cool,” Thomsen said. “I would love to be able to go to Olympic Games events in the Twin Cities.”
Thomsen realizes that it would be costly to provide the necessary facilities in the Twin Cities to host a Summer Olympic Games, he said.
Which is why Thomsen said it is important to get the support of the Twin Cities public before approaching political and business leaders about getting on board with an Olympic Games bid.
But in the long run, the Twin Cities region and the state of Minnesota as a whole would benefit from hosting the Summer Olympics, Thomsen said.
There have been past efforts to bring the Summer Olympics to the Twin Cities, he said.
According to Thomsen, the Twin Cities was a runnerup in 1996 when Atlanta, Ga., was the choice of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) and became the last U.S. city to host the Olympics after it was picked by the International Olympics Committee (IOC), the world governing body of the Olympic Games.
Thomsen also pointed to the efforts of State Rep. Melissa Hortman, DFL-Brooklyn Park/Coon Rapids, back in 2006 to make the Twin Cities home to the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Hortman and 19 House authors introduced legislation for the creation of a task force to determine whether Minnesota would benefit economically from making a bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics, according to a press release from her office in March 2006.
It would create jobs for the state and provide a deadline for much needed transportation projects in the metro area, Hortman stated at the time.
The legislation was not passed and no American city has made the shortlist to host the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Either Istanbul, Turkey, Tokyo, Japan, or Madrid, Spain, will be selected by the IOC Sept. 7, 2013.
The 2016 Olympics will take place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The site for the 2024 Summer Olympics won’t be announced by the IOC until 2017 with bidding for the host city starting in 2015.
According to the Wikipedia website, there are potential bids from several cities in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America, including Toronto, Canada, Dallas, Texas, Baltimore-Washington and Tulsa, Okla.
Thomsen is hoping that his Facebook page will result in the Twin Cities joining the mix, he said.
Peter Bodley is at [email protected]