Olympic History at the Coliseum
July 29, 2019
The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum is celebrating two Olympic milestones this week: the 87th anniversary of the 1932 Olympics, and the 35th anniversary of the Olympics held here in 1984.
In 1932, the Coliseum served as the venue for the opening and closing ceremonies, and was the primary site for track and field. The total number of attendees at the opening ceremony was 101,022 and it is estimated that over 1.2 million fans from all over the world attended the Games. This was the first Olympics to set up an Olympic Village for the visiting athletes, and also premiered the use of the now common tri-level award ceremony podium.
When Los Angles hosted the 1984 Summer Olympics, the Coliseum became the first stadium to host Summer Olympic Games twice—once again serving as the primary track and field venue and site of the opening and closing ceremonies. It is estimated that over 5.7 million people attended the 1984 games, with more than 80,000 filling the Coliseum for both the opening and closing ceremonies. Interestingly enough, the US Olympic team won 16 Gold Medals in Track and Field in 1984—the exact same number as in the 1932 Olympics held in the same venue!
On September 13th, 2017, the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum made history when it was announced that the City of Los Angeles would host the Summer Olympics in 2028, with the Coliseum hosting the opening and closing ceremonies, and the majority of both men’s and women’s athletics—making it the only stadium in the world to ever host three Summer Olympic games.
To learn more about the history of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, make sure you check out our Historical Timeline.