March 06, 2008, 1 a.m. (ET)
MEDIA ADVISORY: Final Preparations Being Made for 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit; Record 130 Athletes Expected to Participate With a little more than one month remaining until the start of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit, 130 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Team Hopefuls are expected to participate in the event, April 13-16, in Chicago, Ill. Media who have not do so already are strongly encouraged to register for the event and to get a hotel reservation request with the Palmer House Hilton, the host hotel for the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit. Instructions for doing so are provided below. Headlining the group of athletes is swimmer Michael Phelps (Townson, Md.), a six-time Olympic gold medalist from Athens, and his coach Bob Bowman; track and field standouts Allyson Felix (Los Angeles, Calif.), Jeremy Wariner (Waco, Texas) and Sanya Richards (Austin, Texas); as well as U.S. Women's National Team soccer athletes Abby Wambach (Rochester, N.Y.), Heather O'Reilly (East Brunswick, N.J.) and Kate Markgraf (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.). Among the 130 athletes currently confirmed to participate in the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit are 51 who have previously competed in an Olympic or Paralympic Games, including 35 medalists. Athlete additions to the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit since the first release on February 1 include: 2004 Olympic gold medalist Paul Hamm (gymnastics/Milwaukee, Wis.); 2007 World Championships All-round gold medalist Shawn Johnson (gymnastics/Des Moines, Iowa); nine-time World Championships medalist Nastia Liukin (gymnastics/Plano, Texas); New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's daughter, Georgina Bloomberg (New York City, N.Y.), a 2008 Olympic hopeful in Equestrian; and 2004 Olympic gold medalists in beach volleyball Misty May-Treanor (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Kerri Walsh (Santa Clara, Calif.) Other athletes participating as announced on Feb. 1 will be two-time Olympic gold medalist Steven Lopez (taekwondo/Sugar Land, Texas) and modern pentathlete Sheila Taormina (Livonia, Mich.), attempting to make history by competing in her fourth Olympic Games in three different sports. Please click on the following link for a complete list of U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Hopefuls expected to participate. Media Summit Athlete/Coach Participation List 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit SCHEDULE The U.S. Olympic Media Team Summit will begin on Sunday, April 13, with media registration, a media tour of the proposed Chicago 2016 venue sites and an opening reception. The event concludes Wednesday, April 16 at 4 p.m. The MASTER SCHEDULE for the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit has been included in this release for the first time. Primarily, the Media Summit schedule includes five major sections including press conferences, roundtables, broadcast sessions, photo sessions and an NBC session. Press conference and roundtables are generally provided for media in newspaper, radio, and magazine. The broadcast sessions are provided for personalized on-camera interviews with all athletes. Television entities will be pooled together and provided an 8 ft. x 8 ft. broadcast booth. These sessions will be managed by USOC Communications staff member Lisa Ramsperger. Any broadcast entities requiring booth space within these sessions should contact Lisa at (719) 866-4805. The photo sessions are provided for quick individual head and shoulder shots of each athlete for photo agencies, newspapers and magazines. Anyone needing individual booth space (8 ft. x 8 ft.) in the photo sessions should contact Kevin Neuendorf at (719) 866-4786. The NBC sessions are reserved for NBC Universal and their partners and are dedicated to providing them with the athlete access needed to enhance their broadcast of the 2008 Olympic Games. The schedule will undergo modifications between now and the Media Summit. Please use this as a reference and check back frequently for changes and modifications as they happen. Chicago 2016 Venue Tour Chicago is the U.S. Candidate City for the 2016 Olympic Games and the organization will host a venue tour for all accredited media attending the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit. The 2.5 hour tour will incorporate much of the Chicago 2016 Venue plan with specific stops at McCormick Place as well as Soldier Field. In addition, interview opportunities with Chicago 2016 staff will be made available along the tour as well. Reservations to be a part of that tour are now being taken. Please contact Peggy Manter by e-mail ( or by phone at (719) 866-2206 to reserve your spot today. Credentialing , Hotel Reservations Credential applications are available on the USOC's media-specific website under the media credentialing icon. Access the accreditation area directly by clicking on the following link: MEDIA SUMMIT ACCREDITATION. A special block of rooms has been held at the Palmer House Hilton in downtown Chicago. You can make hotel reservations within the USOC's accreditation area or by clicking on the following link: HOTEL RESERVATIONS. To obtain the special media rate through the Palmer House Hilton, media must book a room by March 21. For more information, please contact the USOC's Communications Division at (719) 866-4529.