Tourism Industry News
With Open Arms, Vancouver Emblem Has Curious Past
The emblem of the Olympic Winter Games is a colorful humanoid with arms spread wide, a contemporary interpretation of a stone landmark called an inukshuk with a history stretching back more than 3,000 years in Inuit culture.
Sitting atop the Olympic Rings, the symbol looms large on licensed merchandise and is sure to generate curiosity once the Games are under way.
An inukshuk (in-OOK-shook) is a carefully balanced pile of unworked rocks and slabs. The Inuit have built them through time to guide travelers, assist with hunts, warn of danger or indicate caches of food. A miniature version stands hip-high, with others measuring 3 to 6 feet tall (1 to 2 meters), one builder said.