Oregon is all about track and field. Across the state you’ll find a shared love for runs, relays, jumps, pole vaults and more. The collective passion often converges in the Willamette Valley city of Eugene, known as TrackTown USA, home to the athletic energy of the University of Oregon and the birthplace of Nike. It’s where many champions earned their stripes, from running legend Steve Prefontaine to Olympic medalists Phyllis Francis, Matthew Centrowitz Jr., English Gardner, Keshia Baker, Ashton Eaton, and Brianne Theisen-Eaton. The university’s historic stadium, Hayward Field, recently debuted state-of-the-art renovations just in time for a series of world-class events, notably the U.S. Olympic Team Track & Field Trials (June 2021) and the World Athletics Championships Oregon 22 (July 2022).
The clock is ticking — here’s what you should know about these mega sporting events and how to spend your time between meets. Pro tip: Sign up for Travel Oregon newsletters to get the latest information and special offerings delivered to your inbox.
2021 Olympic Trials – Track & Field
You probably won’t be able to attend the Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan, but the next best thing will be the U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Track & Field, held in Eugene from June 18-27, 2021. For the sixth time at Hayward Field, the event will host top U.S. track and field athletes competing for spots on the national team, a year after postponing because of the pandemic (so the anticipation is at a next-level high).
Due to state and local health regulations, the Olympic Trials will have limited seat inventory. That means all tickets held by existing customers cannot be fulfilled — instead, those tickets will be refunded and a new, revised ticketing program will be announced in May 2021. Sign up for the TrackTown USA Newsletter to receive the important information first.
World Athletics Championships Oregon22
The World Athletics Championships are coming to Eugene in July 2022, the first time in history that the championships will be held in the United States. Formerly known as the IAAF Track & Field World Championships, WCH Oregon22 will showcase the best track and field athletes in the world. For Americans, the event is especially thrilling as Team USA will defend its title as the World’s #1 Team.
Tickets to Oregon22 will soon go on sale in 2021. Sign up for the official WCH Oregon 22 newsletter to get the latest updates, including when pre-sale and general public tickets become available for purchase. Do your research and plan ahead as local hotels and attractions will book up quickly.
Oregon Travel Tips
There’s a lot to love about this state. If you’re all about nature, we have forest trails, sagebrush-scented high desert, sparkling alpine lakes and 363 miles of pristine coastline. For the foodie, a farm-to-table restaurant is always around the corner and usually not far from an award-winning microbrewery or vineyard. History buffs enjoy the museums and historical sites that leave a deeper connection to Oregon’s places and people. Best of all, your itinerary is entirely up to you.
Because of the high demand for travel resources around these major sporting events, you’ll need to prepare more than usual. Here are some step-by-step Oregon travel tips to get you ready for your special trip.
- Start mapping out your itinerary with free visitor guides delivered right to your mailbox. (Our bi-monthly email newsletters are free, too.)
- Do your research about your destination’s current guidelines. As of May 2021, COVID-19 protocols include wearing a face covering indoors and outdoors when physical distancing isn’t possible. Many restaurants and attractions require reservations.
- Book your hotel early and consider extending your trip beyond Eugene to other parts of the state. Oregon is a big place with seven unique regions, each with a variety of things to do and see — it would be a shame to miss out.
- Find out what vegetables and fruit are in season along the Oregon Food Trails and leave space in your suitcase for gifts. Keep in mind that Oregon wines fly free on Alaska Airlines flights.
- Learn how to prepare, care and connect in Oregon with Take Care Out There.