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Get ready for 'one big party!' The Rio Olympics are just 2 years away

Aug. 5, 2014 at 6:45 AM ET

Are you ready for Rio?

If not, you have two years to get your act together. The 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro begin Aug. 5, 2016 – exactly two years from today. And it sounds like countries around the world should start gearing up for a celebration.  

“The atmosphere is always one big party,” explains Natalie Morales, who is half Brazilian. “Its beautiful scenery, samba, food and culture are second to none.”

Rio De Janeiro
Michael Regan / Getty Images
An arial view of the "Christ the Redeemer" statue on top of Corcovado mountain in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

The second-largest city in Brazil is expected to host 204 nations and more than 10,500 athletes, according to a press release from the U.S. Olympic Committee. While the numbers are staggering, the country did just pull off the World Cup, which was held in Brazil earlier this summer.

Natalie already can't wait for her fellow anchors to head down south for the Olympics and take in the samba dancing, beautiful sunsets, iconic beaches and maybe even some hang-gliding, which Natalie did in Brazil in 2011.

Jim Bell, the executive producer for NBC's Olympic coverage, and TODAY’s executive producer Don Nash went to Rio de Janeiro recently to find out how the country was coming along in its preparation. You can almost see Kerri Walsh Jennings spiking a volleyball on the beach volleyball court.

“From the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema to the top of Sugarloaf Mountain, Rio is certainly one of the most — if not the most — physically stunning city to ever host an Olympics,” Bell told TODAY after his visit. “There’s a lot of work to be done, but we saw solid progress on venue construction and sense real momentum coming off a successfully organized World Cup.” 

Watch: US athletes reveal why they're ‘excited’ for Rio 2016

And in case you can't wait a few years for the Games, here's a quick peek at what's coming up. Trampolinists Steven and Jeff Gluckstein marked the anniversary by doing what else — flying through the air!


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