- 1984 Summer Olympics
Name = Games of the XXIII Olympiad
Size = 200
Optional caption =
Host city =
Los Angeles, California, United States
Nations participating = 140
Athletes participating = 6,829
(5,263 men, 1,566 women)cite web|url=http://www.olympic.org/uk/games/past/index_uk.asp?OLGT=1&OLGY=1984|title=Games of the XXIII Olympiad|publisher=International Olympic Committee]
Events = 221 in 23
Opening ceremony = July 28, 1984
Closing ceremony = August 12, 1984
Officially opened by = President
Athlete's Oath =
Judge's Oath =
Olympic Torch =
Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
P.A. Announcers =
Dennis Packer, Peter ArbogastListen
filename=John Williams Olympic Theme.ogg
title="Olympic Fanfare and Theme"
John Williamsfor the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles
OggThe 1984 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIII Olympiad, were an international multi-sport eventheld in Los Angeles, California, United States in 1984. Los Angeles was selected as the host of the Games on May 18, 1978 on the 80th IOC session at Athens, Greece, without a vote, because it was the only city that submitted a bid to host the 1984 Summer Olympics. The only other interested city, Tehran, declined to bid. Many blamed this on the massive cost overrunsof the 1976 Games, staged in Montreal.
In response to the
American-led boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympicsin Moscow, 14 Eastern Bloccountries and allies including the Soviet Union, Cubaand East Germany(but not Romania) boycotted the Games. For differing reasons, Iran and Libya also boycotted. The USSR announced its intention not to participate on May 8, 1984, citing security concerns and "chauvinistic sentiments and an anti-Soviet hysteria being whipped up in the United States" [Burns, John F. Protests are Issue: Russians Charge 'Gross Flouting' of the Ideals of the Competition. " New York Times", 9 May 1984] . The Los Angeles boycott influenced a large number of events that were normally dominated by the absent countries. Boycotting countries organized a rival event in July-August 1984, called the Friendship Games.
The host state of California was the home state of U.S. President
Ronald Reagan, who officially opened the Games. He had served as governor of the state from 1967 to 1975. The official mascot of the Los Angeles Games was Sam the Olympic Eagle.
The 1984 Olympic Torch Relay began in
New York Cityand ended in Los Angeles, traversing 33 states and Washington, D.C.Unlike later torch relays, the torch was always carried by runners on foot. It covered more than 9,320 mi (15,000 km) and involved 3616 different runners, including 200 runners from the sponsoring company AT&T. O.J. Simpsonwas among the runners, carrying the torch up the California Incline in Santa Monica. Rafer Johnson, winner of the decathlonat the 1960 Summer Olympics, was the final torch relay runner. He used the Olympic torch to activate a specially-built Olympic logo, whose flame would circle around the five Olympic rings. The cauldron above the logo was later activated by a switch used inside the press box of the Coliseum.
John Williams composed the theme for the Olympiad, "
Olympic Fanfare and Theme." This piece won a Grammy for Williams and became one of the most well-known musical themes of the Olympic Games, along with Leo Arnaud's " Bugler's Dream"; the latter is sometimes attached to the beginning of Olympic Fanfare and Theme. The famous Brazilian composer Sergio Mendesalso composed a special song for the 1984 Olympic Games, "Olympia," from his 1984 album "Confetti". A choirof several hundred voices was assembled of singers in the region. All were volunteers from nearby churches, schools and universities.
Carl Lewismade his first of four appearances in the Olympics, equalled the performance of Jesse Owensof 1936, and won four gold medals in the 100 m, 200 m, 4x100 m relay; and the Long jump.
* The first gold medal to be awarded at the Los Angeles Olympics was also the first-ever medal to be won by an athlete from China when
Xu Haifengwon the 50 m Pistolevent.
Nawal El Moutawakelof Moroccobecame the first female Olympic champion of a Muslimnation, and the first of her country in the 400 m hurdles.
Carlos Lopes, from Portugal won the Marathon (2:09:21 - Olympic record that stood for 24 years). It was the first Gold Medal ever to Portugal.
* A marathon for women is held for the first time at the Olympics (won by
Joan Benoit). The event is considered notable because of Swiss runner Gabi Andersen-Schiess, who - suffering from heat exhaustion - stumbled through the last lap, providing dramatic images.
Synchronized swimmingand rhythmic gymnasticsdebuted in Los Angeles as Olympic events, as did wind surfing.
* Following the IOC agreement to designate the
Republic of China(Taiwan) Chinese Taipei, the People's Republic of China appeared in the Olympics as China and won 15 gold medals. In weightlifting, athletes from the Chinese Taipei and China teams won medals at the same event.
Li Ningfrom the People's Republic of China won 6 medals in gymnastics, 3 gold, 2 silver, and 1 bronze, earning him the nickname "Prince of Gymnastics"Fact|date=September 2008 in China.
Steve Redgravewon his first title in rowing of the record five he would go on to win in five Olympic competitions.
Daley Thompsonapparently missed a new world record in winning his second consecutive gold medal in the decathlon; the next year his score was retroactively raised to 8847, giving him the record.
Victor Davisset a new world record in winning the gold medal in the 200-metre breaststroke in swimming.
Mary Lou Rettonbecame the first gymnast outside Eastern Europe to win the gymnastics all-around competition. Only 1 of the 11 women who won gold medals at the 1983 World Championships competed because of the boycott.
* In men's gymnastics, the American team won the Gold Medal.
* France won the Olympic soccer tournament, defeating Brazil 2-0 in the final. Olympic soccer was unexpectedly played before massive crowds throughout America, with several sell-outs at the 100,000+ seat Rose Bowl. This interest eventually led to the US hosting the
1994 FIFA World Cup.
* The opening ceremony featured the arrival of
Bill Suitorby means of the Bell Aerosystems rocket pack(also known as a Jet Pack).
* The Soviet-led boycott affected weightlifting more than any other sport: 94 of the world's top 100 ranked lifters were absent, as were 29 of the 30 medalists from the recent world championships. All 10 of the defending world champions in the 10 weight categories were absent.
* Eleven athletes failed drug tests at the Los Angeles Games. It was reported that as many as 17 other "A samples" were found to be positive but, as the athletes' code numbers were missing, no "B samples" were testedFact|date=August 2008.
Los Angeles venues
Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum- opening/closing ceremonies, athletics
Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena- boxing
Dodger Stadium- baseball
Pauley Pavilion, University of California, Los Angeles- gymnastics
* Eagles Nest Arena,
California State University, Los Angeles- judo
* Olympic (McDonald's) Swim Stadium,
University of Southern California- swimming, diving, synchronized swimming
* Olympic Village (athlete housing),
University of Southern California
Los Angeles Tennis Center, University of California, Los Angeles- tennis
* Athletes Village,
University of California, Los Angeles
* Albert Gersten Pavilion,
Loyola Marymount University, Westchester, California- weightlifting
outhern California venues
El Dorado Park, Long Beach, California- archery
* The Forum, Inglewood,
Lake Casitas, Ventura County, California- canoeing, rowing
* Olympic Velodrome,
California State University, Dominguez Hills, Carson, California- cycling
Mission Viejo, Orange County, California- road course cycling
Santa Anita Park, Arcadia, California- equestrian sports
* Long Beach Convention Center, Long Beach,
* Rose Bowl, Pasadena,
Titan Gymnasium, California State University, Fullerton, Fullerton, California- handball
Weingart Stadium, East Los Angeles College, Monterey Park, California- field hockey
Coto de Caza, Orange County, California- modern pentathlon
* Olympic Shooting Range, Prado Recreational Area, Chino,
Long Beach Arena, Long Beach, California- volleyball
* Raleigh Runnels Memorial Pool,
Pepperdine University, Malibu, California- water polo
Anaheim Convention Center, Anaheim, California- wrestling
* Long Beach Shoreline Marina and Harbor, Long Beach,
Harvard Stadium, Harvard University, Boston, Massachusetts- football/soccer preliminaries
Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland- football/soccer preliminaries
Stanford Stadium, Stanford University, Palo Alto, California- football/soccer preliminaries
See the medal winners, ordered by sport:
14 countries took part in the Soviet led boycott of the 1984 Olympic Games [http://www.infoplease.com/ipsa/A0114812.html] :
flag|Iran and flag|Libya also boycotted the games, citing political reasons, but were not a part of the Soviet led boycott.
Los Angeles as host city
Following the news of the massive financial losses of the
1976 Summer Olympicsin Montreal, Quebec, Canada, only Los Angeles and for a brief time Tehran expressed interest in hosting the 1984 games. This was seen as a major threat to the future of the Olympic Games. However, with the financially successful Los Angeles Games, cities began to line up to be hosts again. The Los Angeles and Montreal Games are seen as examples of what to do and what not to do when organizing the Olympics, and serve as object lessons to prospective host cities. While Montreal organizers ran up a substantial debt eight years earlier by constructing many new, overly ambitiously designed venues, the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee relied heavily on the use of area venues that were already in existence. The Olympic Velodrome and the Olympic Swim Stadium, funded largely by the 7-Elevenand McDonald'scorporations respectively, were the only two new venues constructed specifically for the L.A. Games. The resulting low construction costs, coupled with a heavy reliance on private corporate funding, allowed the Games to generate a profit of more than $200 million, making them by far the most financially successful in history. [cite news|url=http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/latimes/access/86729520.html?dids=86729520:86729520&FMT=ABS&FMTS=ABS:FT&date=Oct+28%2C+2001&author=ALAN+ABRAHAMSON&pub=Los+Angeles+Times&desc=L.A.+the+Best+Site%2C+Bid+Group+Insists%3B+Olympics%3A+Despite+USOC+rejection%2C+officials+say+their+plan+was+in+line+with+IOC%27s+call+for+downsizing+of+Games.&pqatl=google|title=LA the Best Site, Bid Group Insists; Olympics: Despite USOC rejection|date=July 25, 2004|publisher=Los Angeles Times|accessdate=2008-08-17] The absence of the Soviet Bloc, and the domination by the American team, was also instrumental in making these Olympics a financial success.
In popular culture
McDonald'sran a promotion entitled "When the U.S. Wins, You Win" where customers scratched off a ticket and if the U.S. won that event then they would be given a free menu item: a Big Macfor a gold medal, an order of french friesfor a silver medal, and a Coca-Colafor a bronze medal. The promotion became a near financial disaster due to the Soviet boycott which led to the U.S. winning far more Olympic medals than expected. [http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=FA0B13FA3F5C0C738DDDA10894DC484D81&n=Top/News/Business/Companies/McDonald's%20Corporation ADVERTISING; BIG MAC'S OLYMPIC GIVEAWAY - Free Preview - The New York Times ] ]
This promotion was parodied in the "Simpsons" episode "
Lisa's First Word", where Krusty Burger runs a similar offer. The promotion was intended to be rigged so that prizes would only be offered in events dominated by the Eastern Bloc, but the Soviet-led boycott causes Krusty to personally lose 44 million dollars. He vehemently promises "to spit in every fiftieth burger", to which Homer retorts "I like those odds!" Chief Wiggum also exclaims that he could kiss Carl Lewis, who won four gold medals at the Games.
Also, in 1983, a year before the Olympics were to begin, one of
Snoopy's siblings, Spike sent Snoopy a letter that the Olympics were being moved to Needles, California. Of course, Spike's cactus told him that rumor.
1984 Summer Paralympics
International Olympic Committee
IOC country codes
Olympics with significant boycotts
1976 Summer Olympics– Montreal, Quebec, Canada — African boycott
1980 Summer Olympics– Moscow, Russia, USSR— US-led boycott
* 1984 Summer Olympics –
Los Angeles, California, U.S. — Soviet-led boycott
* [http://www.olympic.org/uk/games/past/index_uk.asp?OLGT=1&OLGY=1984 IOC Site on 1984 Summer Olympics]
* [http://www.la84foundation.org/OlympicInformationCenter/OlympicReview/1984/ore203/ORE203h.pdf "Olympic Review" 1984 - Official results]
* [http://www.la84foundation.com/6oic/OfficialReports/1984/1984v1.pdf Official Report Vol. 1]
* [http://www.la84foundation.com/6oic/OfficialReports/1984/1984v2.pdf Official Report Vol. 2]
* [http://www.olympic.org/common/asp/launchvideo.asp?name=otab3_losangeles84_win_high.wmv Video of President Reagan declaring games open, and torch-lighting by Rafer Johnson]
*Whitakers Olympic Almanack 2004 ISBN 0-7136-6724-9.
*Bill Henry,An Approved History of the Olympic Games,ISBN 0-88284-243-9.
*Greg Andranovich, Matthew J. Burbank, Charles H. Heying, "Olympic cities: lessons learned from Mega-Event Politics", "Journal of Urban Affairs", Vol. 23-2, 2001.
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