SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— The city of San Francisco is inviting the public to a couple of Summer Olympics viewing parties at Civic Center Plaza next week.

Three Olympians were on hand to help make Tuesday’s announcement from the steps of City Hall. The parties will be held next Tuesday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and will host Olympic-themed activities like running races, volleyball on the lawn, and a climbing wall.

San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department General Manager Phil Ginsberg was joined by water polo player Sean Nolan, rower Ted Murphy, and pentathlete Marylyn King.

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“There will be a big, big screen and up to 10,000 people will be able to watch the Olympic Games [that] will be playing all day long,” said Ginsberg.

KCBS’ Anna Duckworth Reports:

The announcement was preceded by an American flag-raising ceremony featuring about 30 elementary school-age campers from the recreation and parks department’s Athletic Camp summer program.

“We intend to do what we do best—celebrate,” former Mayor Willie Brown said as the flag went up and the campers recited the Pledge of Allegiance.

Brown spoke about San Francisco’s bid in 2002 to host the 2012 Summer Games. The city, through the Bay Area Sports Organizing Committee, was a top contender, but was ultimately unsuccessful.

However, the city is proud of the many Olympians with Bay Area ties who are competing in London, Brown said.

The campers then posed for a photo with the athletes, city officials and sponsors of the upcoming Civic Center screenings, and cheered, “Get out and play!”

King, who competed in 1972 and 1976, asked the 50 or so kids just how many of them know who Michael Phelps is.

“This guy won eight gold medals. He woke up every morning and he thought eight gold medals. What do I need to do today that will get me eight gold medals?” said King with encouragement.

George Broder with the Bay Area Sports Organizing Committee said they remain committed to bringing the Olympics to the Bay.

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