INDIANAPOLIS -- Field hockey will be played indoors for the first time at the Pan American Games, and officials and players requested the artificial surface be watered regularly throughout the competition.
Mark Miles -- president of PAX-Indianapolis, the Pan Am organizing committee -- said the risk of damaging the surface was too great. The field is the same one used by the Indianapolis Colts of the NFL.
During the Games, the carpet will be moved from the Hoosier Dome, where the Colts play, next door to the Indiana Convention Center, where the field hockey competition will be held.
A dry field is expected to hurt the caliber of play in the field hockey competition, according to Noreen Landis-Tyson, public relations director of the U.S. Field Hockey Association.
'When the turf is not wet, the ball bounces a lot,' she said. 'It doesn't play as true. ... It's hard to play when the ball is bouncing up three feet.'
If ever there were a competition for memorable honeymoons, Christine and Michael Ashcroft from Waterloo, Ontario, would be a certain medal winner.
Tuesday, Christine, 23, and Michael, 22, were kissing and cuddling as they strolled about the athletes' village at the Pan American Games. Both are members of the Canadian shooting team.
They married Saturday -- 'It was our only free weekend,' Christine said -- and jumped on the plane to Indianapolis.
But there they received a rude shock. Officials hustled them off to separate dorms at the rigidly policed athletes' accomodation.
'Before we left, we thought they might make an exception, but when we arrived, they said no way,' Christine said. 'Now it's virtually a case of 'See you next week.''
The United States has drawn Panama as its first opponent in the men's basketball competition, which begins Sunday. The United States is 4-0 against Panama in previous international competition. In its 61 Pan Am games, the United States has outscored its opposition by an average of 29.2 points a game and has a 59-2 record.
The U.S. women's basketball team will open against Peru Aug. 12.
Gymnastics will be conducted on a 37-inch-high podium that weighs 17 tons.
Originally created for the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal, the floor will be carpeted before it serves as the foundation for all apparatus events. The podium helps gymnasts avoid the confusion of seeing score runners and judges, provides judges with a better viewing angle and affords spectators better sight lines.
The U.S. Gymnastics staff and volunteers needed two days to complete construction of the project.
The recent heat and humidity in Indiana have caused unhealthy ozone levels in Indianapolis, a city air pollution control official said.
It is the first time since 1985 the city's ozone levels have exceeded Environmental Protection Agency standards, said David R. Jordan, administrator of the Indianapolis Air Pollution Control Division.
At 3 p.m. EST Monday, an air-quality monitor on the southwest side of the city reported ozone concentrations of .124 parts per million. The federal health standard is .120 parts per million.
Ozone can make breathing difficult and aggravate symptoms for people with respiratory or heart ailments, Jordan said.
The city will be crowded with heavy traffic when people gather to watch more than 4,500 athletes compete in the Pan American Games Aug. 8-23.