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ADNA Home > Living Downtown > Pictures of Downtown

Centennial Olympic Park

Park Gates
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Originally built for the 1996 Summer Olympic Games, Centennial Olympic Park is a favorite not only of Downtown residents, but of visitors from all over Atlanta and all around the world!

What makes the park so special? Probably the number one attraction is the Olympic Rings fountain. This high-tech fountain, set into a plaza along International Boulevard, which bisects the park, is in the form of five interlocking rings and features a wide array of special effects: from fifty-foot "geyser" bursts to mist to colored lights. In addition, the fountain has been programmed to operate using a host of different patterns and these rotate on a constant basis, so the fountain is never boring!

Another feature that draws crowds are the four-times-daily fountain shows, which run all year except for a few months during the winter. During these 20-minute shows, the fountain demonstrates its amazing special effects to several pieces of popular music, including Tschaikowsky's "1812 Overture," Disney's "Under the Sea," and Neil Diamond's "Comin' to America."

View to the northCentennial Olympic Park is much more than just the fountain, however! The park offers residents, Downtown workers, and Atlanta visitors alike space to kick back and enjoy themselves, whether for a walk, a rest the on grass, or one of the many concerts, festivals and cultural events that take place in the park year-round.

The spirit of the Olympics permeates the park, from Olympic statues to the dozens of Olympic torch lights that brighten up the park after dark. Several plazas in the park are dedicated to various aspects of the Olympics, from the achievements of Billy Payne to the bomb explosion which tried and failed to ruin the 1996 Summer Olympics. The park also features plaques listing the winners Triumph, sculpture in Centennial Park of all the events in the 1996 Summer Olympics as well as flags of every other nation that has ever hosted a Summer Olympics

The Visitor's Center, located at the south side of the park, offers light food, tourist information, and access to computer terminals which help visitors locate another one of the park's attractions -- the Olympic bricks. Funded by individual contributions from all over the world, the Olympic bricks are literally the foundation of the park -- paving the park's walkways north to south, east to west, each bearing the name of a donor or someone donors sought to memorialize.

Other features of the park:

  • Fantastic views of the Downtown and Midtown Atlanta skyline
  • Numerous granite fountain pools
  • Artificial mountain stream
  • Acres of landscaped flowerbeds, trees, bushes and green grass
  • Park benches
  • Two stage areas (a large and a small) used for concerts, dances, and other events
  • Picnic pavilion available for rental

To learn more, visit the COP web site, The park is maintained by the state-run Georgia World Congress Authority.

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