6 U.S. Cities that have Hosted Olympic Games


The United States is a leader in Olympic medals, the number of athletes it sends and the amount of times it has hosted the games. Thus far, the U.S. has held four Summer Olympics and four Winter Olympics in six different cities, and each location has its own stories and monuments to the games. Here are the six U.S. cities that have hosted the Olympics.

St. Louis
St. Louis hosted the third Summer Olympics in 1904, making it the first non-European city to host the games. The Olympics ran in conjunction with the Louisiana Purchase Exposition and even became somewhat of a sideshow to the fair. There were 651 athletes from 12 nations participating in 16 different sports, including tug of war. If you're around St. Louis, visit Francis Field at Washington University, where several Olympic events took place. Also, check out Forest Park, the site of diving, swimming and water polo.

Lake Placid
Lake Placid, New York, has hosted two Olympics: the third Winter Olympics in 1932 and the 13th Winter Olympics in 1980. One of the most memorable Olympic moments to happen in Lake Placid was the Miracle on Ice, the underdog United States hockey team winning gold against the favored Soviet team. If you're in Lake Placid, be sure to see the Lake Placid Olympic Museum, which commemorates both the 1932 and 1980 games. And swing by Olympic Center — now the Herb Brooks Arena named after the U.S. hockey team's coach — where the Miracle on Ice took place.

Los Angeles
Los Angeles hosted the 10th Summer Olympics in 1932, as well as the 23rd Summer Olympics in 1984. One of Los Angeles' claim to fame was both of its Olympics ended up turning a profit, even in spite of the 1984 games being boycotted by 14 Communist countries. Some of the city's Olympic sites include the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the Olympic Swim Stadium (now the Uytengsu Aquatics Center) at University of Southern California and Pauley Pavilion at UCLA. Plus, Los Angeles is bidding for the 2024 Summer Olympics, so you might be able to catch the action in person.

Squaw Valley
In 1960, Squaw Valley, California, held the eighth Winter Olympics. The area's ski resort is one of the largest in the United States and gained much more exposure thanks the the Olympics. Those Winter Olympics were the first to be televised live and showcased a rise in the American's skiing talent. The Squaw Valley Ski Resort is the only venue from the games still standing and is definitely worth a visit for some Olympic-caliber skiing.

Atlanta
Atlanta hosted the 26th Summer Olympic Games in 1996, a centennial celebration of the first Summer Games. Although the Atlanta Olympics had many high points, they were marred by the Centennial Olympic Park bombing, from which two people died and more than 100 were injured. There are many sites worth a visit in Atlanta that have Olympic connections. Check out Lake Lanier, which hosted canoeing and rowing, and visit Turner Field, formerly the Centennial Olympic Stadium and now the home of the Atlanta Braves. Also, take a trip to the Georgia Dome, just east of which sits The Flair, a statue commemorating the Olympics.

Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City held the 19th Winter Olympics in 2002. The games were one of the most successful Winter Olympics on record, both in viewership and financially. The games also gave a huge boost to Utah tourism, and many of the venues constructed still are used for high-profile events. Visit Deer Valley Resort or Park City Mountain Resort for some quality skiing conditions. Or swing by the Utah Olympic Oval to skate on Olympic ice.

Mary Daly is a journalist from Chicago. It's probably for the best her city lost its Olympic bid.