While it may seem as if the next Olympic and Paralympic Games are far out on the horizon, there are events and stories happening every day and around the world that affect Team USA and its athletes. Each week, we'll catch you up on interesting items or take you a little closer to the newsmakers and events you may have missed along the way — often through the kinds of social media posts that make Team USA so compelling.
Could Log-Rolling Go Olympic?
ESPN.com posed that question recently, under the thesis that "Sports enter and exit the Olympics all the time," and, whether log-rolling ever makes it to the Games, the idea is a fun one for consideration. Certainly, it would make the days of the Hoeschler family, which was featured in the ESPN.com piece.
Abby Hoeschler, who lives in Minnesota and who has been featured locally in magazines, newspapers and radio features for some time now, is also the president and CEO of Key Log Rolling, which earned her a 2014 "40 Under 40" honor from the Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal.
In the event the topic comes up around your water cooler, here's Abby in action with a Key Log:
Congratulations are in order for the USA Baseball Women's National Team. While spring training baseball is in full bloom across Major League Baseball's Cactus and Grapefruit Leagues, this past weekend also featured Team USA action.
On Sunday afternoon in the Dominican Republic, the U.S. women topped Puerto Rico, 9-2, in its first game of the COPABE Pan American Games qualifier.
Ryleigh Buck, from Wellington, Kansas, took this shot before the tournament began:
Buck drove in a run to help Team USA jump out to a 3-1 lead, while Jade Gortarez pitched seven innings and recorded 13 Ks. The U.S. women continued play on Monday, and you can follow the action on Twitter (@usabaseballwnt).
Boston 2024 Future And Past
Looking ahead, Boston 2024 will have an old familiar face out in front of its Olympic bid: Deval Patrick. The former Massachusetts governor will help take Boston's case to the International Olympic Committee.
"I’ve been asked to help Boston 2024 in pitching Boston and the Commonwealth to the members of the IOC as a site for the Olympics," Patrick said in statement this past Friday.
Looking back, way back, the bid owes a measure of gratitude to a man named Corey Dinopoulos, who as Massachusetts College of Art and Design student in 2006 created a brand campaign for a Boston Olympic Games for his senior thesis.
Dinopoulos even made the effort to contact state officials after the London 2012 Games, a political move that helped get the ball rolling in Boston. The original design never did see the finish line for the bid, but Dinopoulos did some work with an agency that developed the new logo, and, if the Games do wind up in the Massachusetts capital, he can take more than a small measure of pride on realizing a decades-old dream.
Too often, curling takes on a kind of quadrennial quality, where some only tune in during the Olympic Winter Games. But, of course, as with any Olympic sport, there are national and international competitions dotting the calendar. This past week, in Tallinn, Estonia, the U.S. men finished off the World Junior Curling Championships with a win over Russia to finish 4-5 overall. That record automatically qualifies the United States for a spot at the 2016 worlds.
And if that weren't enough, Quinn Evenson and his teammates also walked away with some new threads:
Thank you to the Norway team parents for providing us with some awesome new gear! pic.twitter.com/LFFMYb7K5y— Quinn (@qevenson) March 8, 2015
"A New Routine"
By now, you've very likely learned that Jordyn Wieber has announced her retirement from elite gymnastics, which led to her titling a blog for The Players' Tribune: A New Routine. What you may not have seen is the clever post that dashed across our timelines as one of her nearly 380,000 followers:
who wants to go skydiving with me????? just got the sudden urge 😱— Jordyn Wieber (@jordyn_wieber) March 6, 2015
While much of the East Coast remained in a deep freeze and under a blanket of snow, Olympic figure skating champion Kristi Yamaguchi was nearly halfway around the world in Hawaii, where she was promoting early childhood literacy with her Always Dream Foundation. Yamaguchi, also the author of "Dream Big, Little Pig," visited two elementary schools this past Tuesday, including Linapuni Elementary: