Washington State

House of Representatives

Office of Program Research



State Government & Tribal Relations Committee

SCR 8403

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

Brief Description: Renaming Marathon Park after Joan Benoit Samuelson.

Sponsors: Senators Hunt and Wilson, C..

Brief Summary of Bill

  • Renames Marathon Park as Joan Benoit Samuelson Marathon Park.

  • Directs the Department of Enterprise Services to properly sign the park as the Joan Benoit Samuelson Marathon Park.

Hearing Date: 3/20/19

Staff: Desiree Omli (786-7105).


Marathon Park is a 2.25-acre waterfront park that was constructed in 1970 and is part of the Capitol grounds. It is located in the southwestern corner of Capitol Lake's north basin. Marathon Park received its name when the City of Olympia competed for, and won, the right to host the 1984 United States (U.S.) Olympic Trials for the first Women's Olympic Marathon. The marathon trials route began and ended at the park.

Joan Benoit Samuelson won the May 1984 Women's Olympic Marathon trials that took place at Marathon Park. She subsequently won the first-ever women's marathon at the 1984 Summer Olympics. Joan Benoit Samuelson set the world and U.S. Women's Marathon record in 1984, and set the U.S. Women's Marathon record on four other occasions. She was inducted into the International Women's Sports Hall of Fame in 1999. The International Women's Sports Hall of Fame recognizes the athletic and coaching achievements of women, and selections are based on achievements, breakthroughs, innovate style, and ongoing commitment to the development of women's sports. In addition, she was inducted into the 2008 Olympic Hall of Fame in 2008. The Olympic Hall of Fame celebrates the achievements of Team USA's premier athletes and teams, as well as the impact of legendary coaches and special contributors. Joan Benoit Samuelson serves on various boards and councils. She also founded the TD Beach to Beacon 10K Road Race, formally known as the Peoples Beach to Beacon, in 1998 to benefit children's charities in Maine.

Summary of Bill:

Marathon Park is renamed Joan Benoit Samuelson Marathon Park in celebration of the thirty-fifth anniversary of the Women's Olympic Marathon trials. The Department of Enterprise Services is directed to properly sign the park as the Joan Benoit Samuelson Marathon Park.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Available.