Russia's Soviet days are well behind it, but if you're headed to Sochi for the Winter Olympics, your dining options will still run deep red â€” as in borscht.
Organizers in Sochi expect to serve 70,000 gallons of this Russian staple â€” a hearty soup whose color comes from beets â€” to spectators. Borscht has graced both the high table of the Kremlin and the lowly tables of peasants across the former Soviet Union.
Lindsey Vonn's decision to sit out next month's Olympic Games because of a knee injury is surely a personal and professional disappointment for the Alpine skiing star. But Olympic athletes with Vonn's star power also mean big advertising dollars â€” and not competing in Sochi may create winners and losers among the skier's sponsors.
On a frigid day at Hatcher Pass, north of Anchorage, Alaska, cross-country skier Holly Brooks glides up to a start line.
This race is just a practice with her Alaska Pacific University teammates. It's a chance for Brooks to test her skills before heading to Europe for the busy World Cup season, and then to Sochi in February for the Winter Olympics. Brooks is now a seasoned member of the U.S. Ski Team, but a little more than four years ago, she was on the sidelines.
As the Olympic Games get closer, athletes like figure skater Jeremy Abbott are focusing on making Team USA. With only two slots on the U.S. men's figure skating team, the competition is tough. But the three-time U.S. champion â€” who has yet to deliver on the world stage â€” wants 2014 to be the year he takes a medal in Sochi, Russia.
Abbott, 28, has been in ice skates since he was 2 years old. He's already been to one Olympics, placing ninth at the 2010 games in Vancouver.