Gold medal visit for BES students 0
Rosie MacLennan might have convinced every student at Banff Elementary School to become an Olympian.
Not that it's a hard sell to young kids who dream of podium finishes and gold medals. But it might be the perks that won them over. In a Q&A session with the students last Friday, Sept. 7, one of the more inquisitive students asked the London 2012 Olympic gold medalist how much it cost to go to the Olympics.
MacLennan couldn't help but laugh.
"You don't have to pay when you go to the Olympics," she said, pausing a moment. "You get everything free - including McDonald's."
That revelation was followed by gasps of joy, and may have just sealed Canada's 2020 Olympic roster.
But it wasn't the only thing Banff students learned from the Olympic trampoline gymnast, who made a surprise visit to the school. She had some inspiring words for the youngsters about trying your best, never giving up and setting goals.
And all the students were keen to listen because MacLennan was a familiar face.
As the only gold medalist to come out of London, the kids all knew her name. Before principal Warren Woytuck introduced her to the students at an assembly, he played a clip of MacLennan's winning routine, and the moment it came on screen kids were whispering to each other, "that's Rosie MacLennan!"
After she spoke and answered some questions - and got herself a room full of fans to cheer her on in four years at the next Olympics - students mobbed her for hugs, high fives and the chance to touch the famous gold medal. MacLennan said it's not the first time she's spoken to a school, or had that kind of reaction, but it is the first time she's visited a school since coming back from London with Olympic gold.
"It's exciting to be able to do this, I love it," MacLennan said afterwards. "It's one of the best parts of this."
And the kids, without a doubt, thought it was pretty great as well.