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Maggie Hendricks

Minnesota town plays Olympic-sized April Fool's joke

Maggie Hendricks
Fourth-Place Medal

This week, the International Olympic Committee is visiting the candidate city of Chicago to judge the Windy City's readiness to host the 2016 Summer Olympics. On April 1, a small town in northern Minnesota announced that they are also hoping that the committee will take the 11-hour drive north to check out their town, as they have thrown their hat in the ring for the same Olympics. The people of Ely, Minn. want their town considered for the 2016 games.

Ely does realize that they have competition in the actual candidate cities, but that doesn't frighten them.

Sure, there are already four cities “officially” competing for that right – Chicago, Rio, Madrid and Tokyo – but the decision isn’t being made until October 2, 2009, so why not make room for an underdog? Do those other cities have something to fear from Ely? Maybe.

But they have a banner over the highway, t-shirts, a Facebook group and a blog. The other candidate cities shouldn't mess with Ely! Of course, considering the announcement was made on April 1, you can imagine the veracity of Ely's bid for the games.

If the name Ely seems familiar to you, it is because this is the same town that announced last year that Canada was going to buy the whole town. That April Fools' Day Joke was so successful that this town, known for being the Gateway to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, went after the Olympics this year. Do you think the IOC fell for it?

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