What is the legacy of the Atlanta Olympics?

Dawn: I don't think the Olympics changed the face of Atlanta at all. There were some surface improvements. We moved the transient population out. But other than that, culturally we didn't change. We can't compare to the European or other cities that have hosted the Olympics. I still think we look like Southern chumps. It's almost like you spank a 2-year-old, and they behave really good for a time. And then after that time, the 2-year-old comes back and acts exactly the same.

Michael: Looking back, I'm amazed at how many international businesses came to Atlanta. It opened the door for a lot of people to create job opportunities. It put Atlanta on the map as a place of opportunity. Atlanta is now considered a city of international status. Eight years from the Olympics, we see how the city has grown. We see people from everywhere living in Atlanta, because those that did visit during '96 had an opportunity to experience the city.

Rick: It left a legacy on how the convention market looks at the Atlanta strip [club] community. Everybody now promotes their business through some marketing within the naked world of Atlanta. That industry blossomed and gained ground due to the Olympics. The IOC [International Olympic Committee] has forbidden any other Olympics from being such an eyesore of commercial marketing. Everything is low-key now. Atlanta was the most tacky Olympics ever. That's our legacy.



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