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Turin At Nighttime is a Celebration for Residents and Visitors

At the Winter Games in Turin, Italy you don't have to be a competitor or even have a ticket to an event to be part of the Olympic experience.

On an unusually warm winter night, thousands of people gathered in Turin's Piazza Castello near where the Olympic winners are presented their medals.

While only those with special invitations could get in the plaza, there was plenty for people to see.

A variety of street entertainers performed for the crowd and for the camera. A Houdini-like escape artist freed himself from bonds of lock and chain.

A fire-eater -- or is that a fire-spitter? -- gave himself heartburn, asking in return for only a small donation.

A juggler amused young and old alike. And nearby, a crowd filled a square where a very big screen TV broadcast the medals ceremony.

The people of Turin came out in part to celebrate the Olympics with their neighbors.

"It is beautiful because in Turin normally at this time, there is nobody,” said one woman resident.

And to share the pride and wonder of hosting this Olympic experience.