In the midst of Olympic trials, St. Mary’s hosted a summer fun camp that allowed students in 3rd-6th grade to experience some of the Olympic games, the excitement of those game and prepare for the upcoming Tokyo Games.

St. Mary’s P.E. teacher Mrs. Margie Black planned a camp full of movement and exercise as well as educational opportunities.

Children enjoyed a “torch” lighting ceremony including ice cream, played basketball, fenced, threw the javelin and jumped hurdles during the week. The week included watching some of the Olympic trials and videos of past Olympians’ winning performances! Part of the week included three ‘quizzes’ to test their Olympic knowledge and provide opportunities to learn several things about the Olympics.

They also took a trip to the Y to utilize the pool. “We played our own version of water polo, tried swimming all the strokes—back, breast, butterfly and freestyle, and the kids split into four groups and put together their own synchronized swimming program,” said Mrs. Black.

Mrs. Black also invited Mike Carson from Parsons to speak to the campers. Mike’s wife, Janelle, was an Olympic athlete! At 17, she went to the Tokyo Olympics—in 1964! She did not medal there but she did set record after record in the trials as well as countless other races/competitions throughout the country—and the world! A week or two after her 18th birthday she appeared on the front cover of  SPORTS ILLUSTRATED! Janelle passed away in July 2020. St. Peter’s and McAuley’s Coach Darbi Stancell and Coach Andy Youngworth also spoke with the students about cross country. Mrs. Black previously coached with Mike Carson and Coach Youngworth at Springfield Catholic.

It was a week of hands-on learning for everyone.