At Canada Olympic Park in Calgary, more than 500 people, including members of Canada's winter sports teams, gathered to hear the news that Vancouver will host the 2010 Olympic Winter Games.
Calgary was the site of Canada's first Winter Olympics in 1988, which was also the first profitable Winter Games ever.
The extra revenue from the Calgary Games went towards establishing the Calgary Olympic Development Association, an organization that helps maintain facilities and pay for training and programs for Canada's elite athletes.
"The Calgary legacy has added so much to the Olympic legacy in Canada," Lee Warren, CODA's vice president of business development, told CBC.
Having the Olympics come back to Canada is a huge thrill, said Olympian Christina Smith, sporting Canadian flags in her braided hair.
"Up and coming athletes will be so inspired," said Smith, pilot of Canada's two-man sled in Salt Lake City. "New athletes will be coming here (to Calgary) and using CODA's legacy once again and foster those athletes. It's just a big inspiration across Canada."
Canada is known as a winter sports power as evidenced by its 96 Winter Olympic medals, including 31 gold, 28 silver and 37 bronze.
At the 2002 Salt Lake City Games, Canada was fifth overall with 17 medals -- six gold, three silver and eight bronze.
With the Olympics on home soil in seven years time, Canada's athletes will look to add to those numbers.
Chris Rudge, president of the Canadian Olympic Committee, told CBC's Brian Williams that winning the 2010 Games is a tremendous opportunity for all young athletes in Canada.
"I think any athlete will tell you there's nothing like having a home game and this is probably the biggest home game you can get," he said. "The Olympics are the quintessential expression of sporting activity.
"This will inspire many young kids to get out and participate and having dreams of maybe participating themselves in 2010."
Dale Henwood, president of the Canadian Sport Centre in Calgary, told CBC that investment in sport is needed between now and 2010 in order for Canadian athletes to keep pace with the world's best.
"I think Canadians want to hear the anthem and see the flag waving and if you want that to happen, it takes investment and it's going to take investment now.
"Within the G-8 countries, Canada is the lowest when it comes to investment in sport."
Henwood said money is not only needed to pay for support staff for Canada's future Olympians, but also to upgrade aging facilities at Calgary Olympic Park so that Canada's elite athletes will have a place to train leading up to 2010. He estimated that Vancouver's facilities would not be ready until 2008 or 2009.
Vancouver's "Sea to Sky Games" involve building new winter sports facilities to go along with existing infrastructure. The provincial and federal governments are splitting the $620 million in costs to build venues.
The most expensive venue is the $102-million cross-country, biathlon and ski jump facility at Callaghan Valley, about eight kilometres south of Whistler. A $52.8-million bobsled and luge track is also planned for Blackcomb Mountain at Whistler.
In Vancouver, a $57-million speed skating oval, a $28.8-million hockey facility and a $24-million curling rink will be built.
Warren wasn't concerned that building similar winter facilities in Vancouver may mean that Calgary's facilities would go unused.
"Not at all," she said. "We've been a partner of the (Vancouver) bid for the past two years both providing intellectual property, knowledge, know-how and all those kinds of things as well as working collaboratively on the issue of facilities and programming.
"The road to the Winter Olympics has been through Calgary since 1988 and we'll be continue to do that for athletes all the way up until the 2010 Games."