© 2024 KLCC

136 W 8th Ave
Eugene OR 97401

Contact Us

FCC Applications
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

High-profile track and field events continue this week in Eugene with the NCAA championships

A track and field stadium
Karen Richards
Eugene's Hayward Field will host the 2024 NCAA Track and Field Championships June 5-8.

The best collegiate track and field athletes are set to compete in Eugene this week.

Hayward Field hosts its 19th NCAA championships Wednesday through Saturday.* It’s expected to generate roughly $8.6 million for the local economy, according to Travel Lane County.

The organization's spokesperson, Andy Vobora, told KLCC that area hotels have largely recovered from staffing issues following the pandemic. Restaurants are still impacted by unfilled jobs.

However, Vobora adds “One of the things that we always want to emphasize with these events is, while there’s a lot of people here, and a lot of the hotel rooms are filled up, we want local people to stay engaged, and support those local restaurants," said Vobora. "The reality is, the busy places will be around the venue itself at Hayward field, or around those hotel clusters.”

Vobora said more than 1,100 athletes are expected in Eugene, along with their coaches, staff, families and fans.

Eugene has secured the NCAA’s through 2027, and will soon find out about 2028 and beyond. Vobora said local organizers have been lobbying to make Hayward Field the permanent site for the championships, but for now, the event continues to be awarded through a bidding process.

Men's events will be held Wednesday and Friday; women's events are Thursday and Saturday. The women of Oregon have 14 total entries in the championships. The men have five. Oregon State has one entrant, Anneke Moersdorf, in the heptathlon. Moersdorf was the Pac-12 Student Athlete of the Year.

The NCAA Championships are just one of several major events being held at Hayward Field over spring and early summer.

The venue hosted the Prefontaine Classic over Memorial Day weekend. The USATF Under 20 (U20) Championships and Nike Outdoor Nationals are June 12-15, and the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for track and field are June 21-30.

*Note: The men had NCAA Division I championship meets at Hayward Field in 1962, 1964, 1972, and 1978. The first women's NCAA outdoor track and field championship was in 1982, so this year will be the 15th year the women's final is contested at Hayward Field.

Karen Richards joined KLCC as a volunteer reporter in 2012, and became a freelance reporter at the station in 2015. In addition to news reporting, she’s contributed to several feature series for the station, earning multiple awards for her reporting.