Lithuania in the winter is cold. How cold? Try -16 in Kaunas on Monday afternoon.
Even for those that are used to it, a cold snap can make you feel like pulling the covers over your head and spending the day in bed, but that's not how things work in Lithuania, especially when it comes to basketball.
Last week representatives of FIBA Europe, including Secretary General Nar Zanolin, learned first hand that the heat generated by the country's love of basketball has kept preparations for EuroBasket 2011 on schedule, in spite of the weather.
"We had a very thorough visit," commented Zanolin.
"We visited arenas and hotels, met with the local authorities as well as the office of the Prime Minister. We have all assurances that the facilities will be ready on time, so we're very pleased."
"We're looking forward to continued cooperation with the Lithuanian Basketball Federation, and have the utmost confidence in their ability to deliver the best EuroBasket ever."
The visit also saw the venues for Europe's premier basketball competition finalized, with Alytus, Klaipeda, Panevezys and Siauliai chosen as Preliminary Round venues and Kaunas and Vilnius the host cities for the final two rounds.
The host cities status as such will be contingent on the meeting of certain standards ahead of the event.