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Official: Salt Lake City to pursue 2026 bid

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Utah Governor Gary Herbert and Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker announced Monday that the last American Olympic host the Games will pursue another Olympic bid in 2026.

“I’m excited and optimistic for the great state of Utah and Salt Lake City and the people of Utah to once again say we are ready, willing and able to host the Winter Games,” Governor Herbert said.

The organizing committee, comprised of business, government, sports, and community leaders prepared a 36-page report that examined whether it would be worthwhile for the city to host another Olympic Games and determined that “Utah’s Olympic legacy is strong and vibrant and ready to provide the foundation for a future Olympic Winter Games.”

The committee is confident that Salt Lake City has the infrastructure in place from the 2002 Olympics to host another Games, and the fact that they would only need to update their venues rather than building from scratch gives them a significant advantage on the other bids. The proposed budget for the 2026 Games is $1.67 billion, roughly $300 million higher than the city’s previous Olympics.

However, it’s believed that the USOC is more interested in hosting the 2024 Summer Games and may not field a bid for 2026, leaving Utah, Reno-Tahoe, and Denver in the cold (so to speak).

Amy Purdy, Winter Paralympic medalist, to perform at Rio Paralympic Opening Ceremony

Amy Purdy
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Amy Purdy made her name as a snowboardcross bronze medalist at the Sochi Paralympics and runner-up on “Dancing with the Stars” in 2014.

In September, she’ll combine both.

Purdy will perform as a dancer in the Rio Paralympic Opening Ceremony on Sept. 7, in addition to being an NBC reporter during the Games.

She was told her performance will be four to five minutes. On “Dancing with the Stars,” her performances were about 90 seconds, she said. She traveled to Rio for a week of rehearsals in July.

Purdy, 36, survived bacterial meningitis in 1999 but lost both her legs and later needed a kidney from her father at age 20.

“I’m most excited about the concept of this dance,” Purdy said. “Just the idea of man versus machine. A lot of times we feel really limited because of our prosthetics. But this dance, hopefully, will kind of shatter those borders a little bit and allow me to move my body in a way I haven’t done before.”

Purdy is an innovator. She built her own snowboard and is seen as instrumental in getting her sport into the Paralympic program beginning in 2014.

A model, she’s been in a Madonna music video, a Super Bowl commercial, ESPN the Magazine’s Body Issue and competed on “The Amazing Race” in 2012.

MORE: Rio Paralympic broadcast schedule

Sneak peek at Lindsey Vonn’s episode of ‘Running Wild with Bear Grylls’

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Lindsey Vonn‘s episode of “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” will air on NBC on Monday at 10 p.m. ET.

From NBC Universal:

“After roaring across crystal-clear waters in a speedboat, Bear and Lindsey must strip down and swim to shore before inching their way along the rugged coastline. After rappelling down a sheer rock wall, the two get inventive and use a spear-gun to traverse a hundred-foot deep chasm. With the sun setting, they collect a dinner of sea urchins and Bear challenges Lindsey to a swimming competition with hilarious results. Along the way Lindsey shares her journey of love, Olympic glory, and displays the focus and determination that has made her one of the most successful female athletes of all time.”

Vonn is returning from a Feb. 27 crash that left her with three significant left knee fractures.

With 76 career World Cup wins, she is 10 shy of the record held by Swedish legend Ingemar Stenmark.

MORE: Lindsey Vonn wants to race men, retire in 2019