82ºF

100 days until Rio Summer Olympics; athletes celebrate on 'Today Show'

NEW YORK – Believe it or not, there are just 100 days until the Olympic Games kick off in Rio. In New York Wednesday they're making sure we start getting ready.

It wasn't just any celebration. The parade at Rockefeller center in New York City was thrown to bring Rio de Janeiro a little closer -- because it is. One-hundred days closer, in fact. That's when the Summer Olympic games kick off in Brazil.

The Today Show brought in 40 of the U.S. Olympic athletes to help mark the occasion.

"Just really excited. This is my fifth Olympics and so it's going to be in Rio.  I think it's going to be a huge, huge success. Huge party and I'm just really looking forward to it," Olympic gold medalist and Sugar Land native Steven Lopez said.

Also in the crowd was Simone Biles of Spring. The 19-year-old has become one of the top gymnasts in the world and is looking forward to big performances in Rio.

"It's super, super exciting. But then again, you've got to take it day by day. But it's so unreal how it's 100 days out," Biles said.

It's not just the athletes getting ready for Rio. Journalists have to be prepared for three weeks of the most exciting athletic competition in the world.

"I think what happens is you talk about the Rio games months ago and it's just kind of an event off in the distance, and then you hit today which is 100 days and it becomes very real," The Today Show's Matt Lauer said. "Then you see the faces of those athletes out in the plaza, like Ryan Lochte and Alyson Felix... and we can then get swept up in the enthusiasm."

The USOC is holding another big bash for the Olympians and the public in Times Square later Wednesday.


About the Author: