Press-Republican

February 22, 2014

Kids enflamed by Olympic excitement

ASHLEIGH LIVINGSTON
Press-Republican

PLATTSBURGH — For Mikey Trombley, the most exciting contest at this year's Winter Olympics is the bobsled races.

“It’s just fun watching all the guys jumping into the sled and going as fast as possible down," said the fifth-grader at Cumberland Head Elementary School.

In fact, Mikey would like to someday be one of those guys and has already begun working toward that dream.

“Me and, like, four of my friends are actually training," he said. "We’re trying. Our babysitter has this huge hill, so we made, like, a course and everything.

"We’re saving up to buy a bobsled."

The pals attempted to navigate their course together on one little sled, Mikey added, "but it didn't work out, so that’s why we're saving up.”

'COMPETE FOR COUNTRY'

The Press-Republican recently spoke with Mikey and several of his schoolmates about this year's events in Sochi, Russia, and they took a break from their school's own Olympic-style competitions to explain what the real games are all about.

“In the Olympics you do sports and compete against other countries, and if it’s, like, the Winter Olympics, you would do winter sports, and you compete for your country, and that’s all I really know about it," said Emma Snook, a fifth-grader.

Those sports, noted fourth-grader Jordan Cook, include “figure skating, speed skating, ski jumping, snowboarding half pipe, and there’s one other thing, (but) I forgot its name.”

In addition, said Michaela Lacey, who is also in fourth grade, “the Olympics is, like, about, like, having fun and representing your country to get, like, a medal, so they can, like, congratulate them and stuff like that.”

She has been following this year's games on television and particularly enjoys watching speed skating.

"And sometimes I like where they get on a sled and they go down ice," Michaela added.

'ALL THE COOL MOVES'

Jordan, on the other hand, prefers to watch figure skating.

“I like how they can just do it really well, and I just like to watch them because it’s really cool how they can do it, and normally they don’t fall," she said.

Emma is also a fan of the sport and enjoys "all the cool moves they do when they spin in the air.”

The Winter Olympics, however, are not of particular interest to Dakota Robinson, who prefers the Summer Games, "when they do the soccer in the arena.

"There’s the Winter Olympics and the Summer Olympics, and (at) the Summer Olympics, there’s usually more teams than the Winter Olympics," the fifth-grader explained.

ROCK-SKIPPING EVENT?

As for how many countries are participating in this year's winter event, fourth-grader Abby Scott said she isn't sure, "but I know it’s a lot.”

In fact, Jordan said, it's “about like 30 or 50 or something."

Though Abby likes to watch skiing and snowboarding, she thinks it might be nice if the Olympics also included a competition to see "how far you can kick a ball."

Emma feels "skipping rocks, like, (to) see how far you can do it," would also make a nice addition to the games.

“Skipping rocks could be one event," Mikey agreed, "but not, like, video games.”

To Michaela, however, the Olympics are fine just the way they are.

“I think they have everything that they need."

Email Ashleigh Livingston: alivingston@pressrepublican.com