Special Olympic Games in Berlin

Hi, it’s Livnah, office manager at Datawrapper, back for my second Weekly Chart. After a bar chart and table in my first Weekly Chart on Florence Nightingale, this time I wanted to try and make my first ever map.

Thinking about places I’ve been to or things I’ve newly learned which could be interesting to share with you, I immediately thought about an event I went to a few weeks back: the opening ceremony of the Special Olympics World Games, which just took place in Berlin from June 17th to 25th. So for this week, I built a locator map to show you where all the events of the Games took place.

I already knew about the Olympics, founded in 1894, as well as the Paralympics, founded in 1989, where people with physical disabilities compete. But this year I also learned about Special Olympics, which were founded 1968 for people with intellectual disabilities to compete year-round in many local competitions and then come together every two years for alternating summer and winter games. The Special Olympics Committee describes their mission like this:

[To p]rovide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.

Just like at the Olympics, the opening ceremony included a parade of delegations with their national flags — traditionally starting with Greece, to honor their role in the original Olympic Games, and ending with the host country (in this case, Germany). All in all, the Opening Ceremony was a big celebration with lots of music, entertainment, and speeches, as well as raising the flag and igniting the Olympic fire with a torch that had travelled via plane and foot all the way from Greece. This year, around 6500 athletes from 176 delegations competed in 26 disciplines spanning from cycling, table tennis, and equestrian events to swimming, sailing, rhythmic gymnastics, basketball, and more.

I created the map by looking up the step by step guide in Datawrapper’s Academy, as well as by learning from other people’s maps using the “Edit this chart” button that you see on some charts. Clicking it creates a copy of the chart in your own account, and you can explore how it was created and adapt it for your own needs. I referred to our support specialist Margaux’s map of Christmas markets for a solution to including locations that were far outside the city center. Following her idea, I created a second map with the greater Berlin area to show the golfing competition out in Bad Saarow. Did you already click the buttons I made and find the three distant locations in the locator map?

That’s it from me. It was fun to create my first map and play around with all the possibilities for markers in a locator map. Next week you’ll hear from Toni.