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The AAU Junior Olympic Games originated from ‘telegraphic’ state track and field competitions. National Champions were determined through telephone and/or mail entries instead of head-to-head competition. In 1949, the AAU conducted its first ‘live’ national meet in Cleveland, Ohio — giving birth to the AAU Youth Sports Program. Because of the success of the national track and field head-to-head competition, AAU leaders solicited support from the business and corporate sector. The Chevrolet Division of General Motors Corporation and the Quaker Oats Company assisted the AAU in their vision of the number of youngsters that could be helped.

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The AAU Junior Olympic Games are the largest national multi-Sport event conducted annually for youth in the United States. Over 17,000 participants competed in 18 sports  with an additional 30,000 family members and spectators who were in attandance here in the City of Houston from July 25th through August 4th.  Thanks to Janis Schmees, the Executive Director of the Harris County Houston Sports Authority and President of the Local Organizing Committee for the 2012 AAU Junior Olympic Games  for helping to secure Hosuton as the host city for 2012. The youth were ages 3 – 20 and there were five venues in which they competed in: The George R. Brown Convention Center, Kinkaid High School, Palace Bowling Lanes, Pearland Natatorium, and Turner Stadium at Humble High School. The sports were Baton Twiriling, Bowling, Cheerleading, Diving, Field Hockey, Gymnastics, Jump Rope, Karate, Multi-Events, Powerlifting, Swimming, Sports Stacking, Table Tennis, Taekwondo, Track & Field, Trampoline & Tumbling, Weightlifting and Wrestling.

Local Celebraties and Professional Athletes such as: 2000 US Olympian in Men’s Gymnastic Sean Townsend, 2000 Olympian Track Star Eric Thomas, NBA Legends Major Jones, Robert Reid, retired WNBA player and 3 time USA Basketball Olympic Gold Medalist Sheryl Swoops, R & B Singer Robyn Troup, Hip Hop Rap Artist Baby Jae. During the 11 days of competition many records were broken in several sports I just want to highlight a few that were broken in Track & Field such as:  Tierra Crockrell, University Place, WA. in Sub-Midget Girls Pentathlon – scored (3081 points), the old record was (2913 points) held by Tia Jones, Kennesaw, GA, 2011,  and Ja’Mari Ward Centerville, Ill, shattered the 33 year old record in the Youth Boys Long Jump with a jump of 22-5 feet and the old record was 22-2.25 set back in 1979 by Carlton White of Houston, Tx.

I want to thank the parents, coaches, youth, volunteers  and the Harris County Houston Sports Authority for a great show of commitment in celebrating the accomplishments of all athletes. Hello to the Rwins Gymnastics Team from Sunrise, Fl I enjoyed hanging out with you at the GRB, congratulations to Andrea Posso – Level 2, Eight and under, she won Gold, Floor Exercise, Gold- Balance Beam, and she was 2nd All-Around, Kira Rodriguez  – Level 2, Gold-Vault, Gold-Bars & 1st Place All-Around, Stephanie Gonzalez – Level 2, Nine and over, Gold-Floor, Silver All-Around,  Alexis Hampton, – Level 2, Gold-Vault, Gold-Bars, Gold Balance Beam, Silver-Floor, and 1st All-Around, Elizebeth Street – Level 2, Four Golds & One Bronze Medal, Alyssa Durgasingh – Level 2, Three Silvers, one Bronze, 4th Over-All.

They all shared with me that they love and aspire to be like the Fad 5, The USA Olympic Women’s Gold Medal Gymnastics Team Member: McKayla Maroney, who also won Silver on the Vault, Jordy Wieber, Gabrille Douglas  (Gabby) Who also won Gold Over- All, Aly Raisman, who also Won Gold in The Floor Exercise Over-All and Bronze on the Balance Beam Over-All, and  Kayla Ross.

Now check out some of the photo’s from the 2012 AAU Junior Olympic Games from Houston, Texas.