Covering the capital city, The Olympian has earned a reputation as a watchdog of state government, leading the effort to change state public disclosure laws to keep government meetings open to the public. The city is often considered to be a major cultural center of the South Puget Sound region, home to quite a number of performing arts companies and theaters as well as a hub of indie music production. The Olympia area is also a magnet for outdoor enthusiasts, located less than two hours from the Pacific Ocean, the Olympic Mountains, Mount St. Helens, and Mount Rainier.

In 2020, McClatchy transitioned to private ownership when it was acquired by Chatham Asset Management. The Chatham acquisition marked the beginning of a new era of opportunity for McClatchy, strengthening the Company's financial position and enabling it to build on its 150-plus year history of independent, community-focused journalism by investing in local newsrooms.