Reminiscing Olympics History After LA Wins 2028
SMC Fitness Instructor, Elaine Roque, remembers when the Track and Field Olympians of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics came to train on Santa Monica College's Corsair Field. What she remembers most was when her friend, Fausta Quintavalla, who threw the javelin for the Italian Olympic team, trained at SMC. "I remember bringing her [Quintavalla] over here [Corsair Field]," Roque said. "Even back then it was high security, so no one else could get on the field without the passes and the correct documentation from the Olympic Committee."
Roque does believe that the security this time around would be tighter than in the 1984 Olympics. Roque doesn't, however, believe that the Olympians would be training at SMC for the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics. "The problem for us is that it would severely impact our student-athletes that train on the field," says Roque. "For our students, which are our priority, and for our student-athletes to have a good facility to train at, I would think we would not want to allow them [Olympians] here if it meant closing our field to all other users." Roque, The Department Chair of the Kinesiology and Athletics Department at SMC, has served in the Kinesiology Department for 28 years and has been the Department Chair for six years.
Los Angeles will be hosting the 2028 Olympics for the third time in the cities’ history, first in 1932 and again in 1984. The International Olympic Committee, also known as the IOC, awarded Paris the 2024 Olympics and Los Angeles the 2028 Olympics on Wednesday, Sept. 13. This is the first time in Olympic history that two cities have won the Olympic bid simultaneously.
IOC President Thomas Bach and Mayor Eric Garcetti sat down together, in which Garcetti signed the “host city contract.” The contract obligates L.A. to pay the remaining balance if the estimated $5.3 billion event goes over budget. However, in return for going second, L.A. will not have to pay millions in IOC fees and will receive from the committee a $180 million advance. This advance money will go to the funding of youth programs citywide starting as soon as 2018.
Roque isn't entirely on board of the Olympics being in L.A. for 2028. "I have mixed feelings," Roque said. "I think it's wonderful if it is going to be a positive for our city, but of course we are a very congested city already so I worry about people trying to get to work and ... live their normal lives when we have this huge worldwide event in our city." Roque, however, does have hope. "Hopefully it will be a way for our city to further establish itself in the world of sports and hopefully it will not be a financial burden to the taxpayers of Los Angeles," Roque said.