This story is part of "Atlanta Remembers: The 1996 Olympics," WABE's series on the impact of the 1996 Summer Olympics on Atlanta, 20 years later. For more stories, click here.
Many Atlanta residents can recall where they were, and what they were doing during the 1996 Olympics.
One program allowed anyone a chance become a part of the physical memory of the Olympics: the Adopt-A-Brick program, in which people donated money to have a brick engraved and placed in the then-new Centennial Olympic Park. During the period of preparation for the Olympics, many purchased a brick for themselves or loved ones, either engraving names or important phrases.
Now, in honor of the 20th anniversary, new bricks are now available for purchase for those who missed their chance years ago.
Originally, 486,000 engraved bricks were sold when the Adopt-A-Brick program was created in 1994. The money that came from the campaign helped raise funds for the 1996 Olympic Games and the USOC teams, as well as the construction of Centennial Olympic Park. The park website states that the original program was one of the most successful fundraisers its time, having raised roughly $17.5 million.
Now, with the revamp of the campaign, the new bricks sold will be used to help serve similar fundraising needs. The purchasing of the new bricks will help fund the 20/20 Vision Project for Centennial Olympic Park. The goal of the project is to build a 21-acre green space expansion, update the Olympic Rings and create additional space for the park in order to be able to host concerts and festivals.
According to the Adopt-a-Brick website, the new bricks will be placed in Spring 2017 and form a pathway along Andrew Young International Boulevard. The pathway of the newly engraved bricks will stretch from a corridor near the College Football Hall of Fame building to the Marietta Street entrance of the Georgia World Congress Center. The original bricks will remain in their current location, within the original structure of Centennial Olympic Park.
The program gives those who missed the opportunity in 1996 a chance to adopt either a large or small brick. The smaller brick is 4x8 and allows two lines of engraved writing for $65, and the larger brick is 8x8 and allows four lines on the brick for $125.
There are 40,000 bricks available for purchase, all sold on a first-come, first-served basis. Bricks can be purchased at the Adopt-a-Brick site, where there is a feature for those interested to test out inscriptions on a virtual brick simulator.
Individual bricks can be located with a kiosk within the park. All that is required is the name of the purchaser.