Sunday, March 14, 2010

Canada's Surprise Gold Medal Stamp

Canada's Telegraph Journal reports, "Canada Post was more than confident that one of our country's athletes would win the first Olympic gold medal on Canadian soil at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games. It secretly went ahead and printed some five million stamps in advance of the games to commemorate the event."

The piece by columnist David Williams goes on to say, " So, when freestyle skier Alexandre Bilodeau did a back double full on the first jump and then a back iron cross to win Canada's first home-earned gold medal on the third day of the games - Sunday, Feb. 14 - Canada Post issued a previously unannounced stamp that was available immediately on line, then in post offices in Vancouver the next day and across Canada starting Feb. 16.

"It was the first time in Canada Post's history that the company commemorated an event the day it occurred. Previously, the stamp had been one of the best kept secrets ever at the post office. An initiative of this magnitude would have been unheard of only a few years ago."

According to David, "As bold as Canada Post's surprise gold medal stamp was, the move wasn't nearly as dramatic as some other postal administrations around the world, such as Australia, Austria and Croatia. Those countries put a close-up photo of every individual gold medal winner on their stamps. Canada Post put an illustration of a gold medal on its stamp, not a photo of Bilodeau himself. The nearest our post office could come to that was to use a small, distant shot of skier Chandra Crawford, gold medal winner in Torino in 2006, on one side of one of the two Olympic spirit stamps."

Shown above, Olympic Gold souvenir sheet issued by Canada Post. The stamp, designed by Naomi Broudo and Violet Finvers of the Vancouver-based firm Tandem Design, shows a Vancouver 2010 Olympic gold medal. Gold maple leaves are scattered around on the booklets of 10 stamps and souvenir sheets of two stamps.

To read the entire article, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM