Women's Olympic Trials, Congress bring gymnastics community to San Jose this week
posted on 07/07/2016

SAN JOSE, Calif., July 7, 2016 – The U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Gymnastics at SAP Center at San Jose (Calif.) is the last stop in USA Gymnastics’ “Countdown to Rio” before the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Competition gets underway Friday, July 8, at 5:30 p.m. PT and wraps up on Sunday, July 10, at 5 p.m. PT, when the five women who will represent Team USA in Rio will be announced at the conclusion of competition. In conjunction with the women’s Trials, San Jose is also hosting the 2016 USA Gymnastics National Congress and Trade Show and staging the Gymnastics City USA fan activities at Arena Green and Plaza de Cesar Chavez. Fans can also easily follow all of the action at sanjose2016.com, on NBC and through the app, “Gymnastics City USA.”

Nearly 3,000 are expected to attend the annual USA Gymnastics National Congress and Trade Show. The USA Gymnastics’ annual educational opportunity includes presentations, demonstrations and educational seminars on a variety of topics and a large exhibitor’s hall with additional business opportunities. The 2016 edition will be staged at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center.

Three-time World and four-time U.S. all-around champion Simone Biles of Spring, Texas/World Champions Centre, leads the field of 14 women vying for the U.S. Olympic Women’s Gymnastics Team and replacement athlete spots. 2012 Olympic gold medalists Gabby Douglas of Virginia Beach, Va./Buckeye Gymnastics, and Aly Raisman of Needham, Mass./Brestyan’s American Gymnastics, are also in the field. The women’s team, pending United States Olympic Committee approval, will be named at the conclusion of Sunday’s competition.

All seven members of the 2015 U.S. Women’s World Championships Team that won the USA’s third straight team gold medal are expected to compete: Biles; Douglas; Brenna Dowell of Odessa, Mo./GAGE; Madison Kocian of Dallas/WOGA; Maggie Nichols of Little Canada, Minn./Twin City Twisters; Raisman; and MyKayla Skinner of Gilbert, Ariz./Desert Lights. In addition, MG Elite’s Lauren Hernandez of Old Bridge, N.J./MG Elite, who finished third in the all-around at the recent P&G Championships, and Ashton Locklear of Hamlet, N.C./Everest Gymnastics, who was a member of the 2014 World gold medal team, are expected to take the floor at SAP Center.

Also competing in San Jose are: Christina Desiderio of Hackettstown, N.J./Parkettes National Gymnastics Center; Rachel Gowey of Urbandale, Iowa/Chow's Gymnastics and Dance Institute; Amelia Hundley of Hamilton, Ohio/Cincinnati Gymnastics; Emily Schild of Huntersville, N.C./Everest Gymnastics; and Ragan Smith of Lewisville, Texas/Texas Dreams Gymnastics.

Open to the general public, Gymnastics City USA provides fans, spectators and local citizens with a free opportunity to celebrate the Olympic Trials. Gymnastics City USA will have something for everyone, from interactive activities, face painting and chalk art to a sand-sculpture beach to the NBC Bay Area Watch Party to music, games and food. Gymnastics City USA is open to everyone whether or not they have tickets to the women’s Trials. Additional fan opportunities for ticketed guests will be available on the SAP Center concourse prior to the start of competition.

The week’s festivities begin on July 7 at 7:30 p.m. at Plaza de Cesar Chavez. The celebration will feature fun activities, games and music. Olympic gold medalist Shannon Miller will sign autographs from 7:30-8:30 p.m.

Beginning at 3 p.m. July 8-10, the Gymnastics City USA Fan Fest at Arena Green will be a lively and interactive celebration of gymnastics, the Olympic Spirit, and this summer’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In addition to sponsor and partner activations and giveaways, Gymnastics City USA will have free family-friendly programing, including DJs and music, gymnastics demonstrations, autograph signings, sand sculptures, chalk art, kid-friendly inflatables, the USA Gymnastics Ninja Challenge Championships, and Rio-themed activities. Food trucks and refreshments will also be available.

Fans without tickets are encouraged to stay at Arena Green and watch the live NBC broadcast of the women’s Trials at the NBC Bay Area Watch Party, scheduled for 6-8 p.m. PT on July 8 and 5:30-8 p.m. PT on July 10.

On July 8 and 10, the fun moves to Plaza de Cesar Chavez. On July 8, Olympic gold medalist Carly Patterson will be signing autographs from 12-1 p.m. And on both July 8 and 10, the fun begins at 7:30 p.m. with games, music, food and beverages. The festivities and music at Plaza de Cesar Chavez are free and open to the public.

Here’s a quick summary of the opportunities available at Gymnastics City USA at Arena Green, as well as on the concourse of SAP Center.

Gymnastics City USA Fan Fest – Arena Green, open to the public
  • Opening Ceremony, July 8, 2:30 p.m. Gymnastics enthusiasts and the general public are invited to the opening ceremony on Autumn Street, outside of SAP Center at San Jose, for the official opening of the the U.S. Olympic Team Trials and Gymnastics City USA at Arena Green. Expected to attend are Olympic medalists Carly Patterson, Kyla Ross, John Macready, Samantha Peszek and Shannon Miller, along with legendary coach Bela Karolyi.
  • Gymnastics City USA Fan Fest, July 8-10, 3 p.m. Daily activities include music, gymnastics demonstrations, autograph signings, sand sculptures, chalk art, kid-friendly inflatables, photo booths, selfie stations, balloon-making, and Rio-themed activities. Food trucks and refreshments will also be staged at the Fan Fest. All activities at the Fan Fest, including the NBC Bay Area Watch Party, are free and open to all ages.
    • P&G autograph sessions. Olympic gold medalists Carly Patterson (July 8 at 3-4 p.m.) and Jordyn Wieber (July 9 at 3-4 p.m.) will be available at the P&G booth. Approximately 300 individuals will have the opportunity for an autograph during the allotted time. Check sanjose2016.com or the Gymnastics City USA app for the latest schedule.
    • Interactive games. The interactive opportunities include: carnival midway games like ring toss, Krazy Cans, milk can toss and over/under ball rolling; a giant slide; water bobbles; inflatable aquarium; climbing wall; and robo surf.
    • Under Armour workout. On July 8-9 at 3 p.m., 2008 Olympic silver medalist Samantha Peszek will lead a fun workout at 3 p.m. at the Autumn Street stage.
    • Autumn Street stage. Athlete appearances, gymnastics club demonstrations, interviews, GK-Elite fashion shows, and more. Between 3-5 p.m. on July 9, Fierce Fiver Kyla Ross will be interviewed on the stage followed by an informal autograph opportunity. To enjoy the GK Elite fashions, don’t miss the fashion show at 4:30 p.m. on both July 8 and 10. The members of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Men’s Gymnastics Team will attend the fashion show on July 10.
    • Fan Zone stage. Athlete interviews; selfie station; Brazilian Samba dancing; NBC Bay Area live news reports; and the NBC Bay Area Watch Party. On the final day, July 10, Olympic medalist Samantha Peszek will be interviewed at 4:30 p.m., followed by an informal autograph opportunity.
    • NBC Bay Area Watch Party, July 8-10. A live NBC Watch Party will follow the Fan Fest on both competition days. NBC will have a Broadcast Headquarters live at Gymnastics City USA, and will also host a live Watch Party during both competition days. The Watch Party will keep the celebration of the Olympic Trials going for those without tickets to experience all of the action live and cheer on Team USA hopefuls: July 8, U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Gymnastics, 6 p.m. PT; July 9 – U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Track and Field; and July 10 – U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Gymnastics, 5:30 p.m. PT
    • P&G Make Up Demos and Mini Manicures. Fans can check out the latest COVERGIRL looks and how to create them by watching demonstrations by a P&G stylist. In addition, they can stop by and treat themselves to a mini manicure featuring patriotic colors and nail art.
    • Hershey’s Hello From Home. With Hershey’s, fans can send a message to Team USA when they’re far from home at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio! Team USA’s athletes will be a hemisphere away, and Hershey’s wants to help fans send them some love with personalized messages. After fans write their message, they will have an opportunity to get a photo with Hershey and Miss Kiss, two of Hershey’s beloved mascots.
    • Chobani. As proud sponsors of both USA Gymnastics and Team USA, Chobani naturally powers athletes of all levels with its delicious and nutritious Greek yogurt. Stop by the Chobani booth to learn more about Team Chobani, support a favorite gymnast at the photo booth and cheer table, and grab a cup of Chobani® Greek Yogurt, including the Brazilian inspired flavors Guava and Mango Passion Power™ Flip®.
    • KT Tape. Olympic champion Kerri Strug will be at the KT Tape Booth on Sunday, July 10, from 3-4 p.m. to sign autographs and take photos with fans. Athletes and fans can stop by for a free KT Tape application to provide pain relief and support for muscles and ligaments. Staff will be on site to tape and to give instructions on the use and benefits of KT Tape. KT tape will also demonstrate its new products. Additionally, KT Tape will unveil a limited-edition USA Olympic tape similar to what Team USA team members may wear at the Olympics. Athletes of all levels should stop by to learn about KT Tape.
    • USA Gymnastics Ninja Challenge Championships, July 10, 3 p.m. Two-time Olympic medalist and “American Ninja Warrior” competitor Jonathan Horton, along with Ninja Warrior competitors Miles Avery and Drew Drechsel, will be on hand when gymnasts, ages 6-11, from local gymnastics clubs race against the clock on an obstacle course that uses AAI gymnastics equipment. Fans can watch and cheer on these budding Ninjas in the finals, where the winners win tickets to the final day of competition.
SAP Center at San Jose concourse, July 8 and 10 (requires event ticket)
  • P&G Beauty Bar. Fans can treat themselves to beauty services featuring P&G’s iconic brands, including Pantene, COVERGIRL and Gillette. Up-dos, make-up refreshers, mini-manicures and, for the gentlemen, shaves. Fans can look their best while watching the best!
  • P&G autograph sessions. On July 10, Olympic gold-medalist Shawn Johnson will be signing autographs. Approximately 300 individuals will have the opportunity for an autograph during the allotted time.
  • Hershey’s Shannon Miller autograph signing. Hershey’s is providing fans with a chance to meet America’s most decorated gymnast and Hershey’s ambassador, Shannon Miller. Miller will sign autographs at the Hershey’s booth prior to the start of Friday’s session beginning at 4:30 p.m. Approximately 300 individuals will have the opportunity for an autograph during the allotted time.
  • Kellogg’s Fitness and Nutrition Zone. Kids can have fun and gain knowledge about the importance of fitness through the interactive Kellogg’s Fitness and Nutrition Zone that features physical challenges in building balance, strength, flexibility and cardiovascular exercise, all of which are fundamental to gymnastics. Participants get coaching tips from local gymnasts, can snap a photo on the Kellogg’s podium and share what gets them started each day on their way to greatness, as well as autographs on July 8 with Shawn Johnson at 4:30 p.m. and on July 10 with Kyla Ross at 4 p.m. Approximately 300 individuals will have the opportunity for an autograph during the allotted time.
  • AT&T. AT&T is creating the next level of connection between Team USA athletes and their supporters by bringing fans deeper into their world and keeping fans connected with them up through the Olympic and Paralympic Games via exclusive video updates. Stop by the AT&T area to become a Fanmate or visit www.attfanmate.com.
  • Thorne informational booth. Athletes, coaches, and fans are welcome to stop by the table for more information on USA Gymnastics-approved Thorne product line. The Thorne team will be there to provide information and a catalog on the following NSF Certified for Sport products: Whey Protein Isolate, Catalyte - an electrolyte beverage, Amino Complex, and Florasport 20B - a probiotic.
  • Gymnastics through the years. The exhibit features a combination of pictures, historical items, mementoes, and vintage equipment, including a 1909 women’s pommel horse, to tell the story of the growth and development of gymnastics. Rome Milan is the exhibit’s owner and curator.
  • International Gymnastics Camp. Fans can stop by the International Gymnastics Camp booth to learn about the IGC difference, to take home exciting camp information and cool giveaways, and to meet Olympic and World champion Svetlana Boguinskaia. Staff members are available to speak about the premier gymnastics training opportunities at IGC, the benefits of summer camp for children, and IGC’s incredible recreation activities.
  • KT Tape. Spectators can stop by the KT Tape booth for a free KT Tape application to provide pain relief and support for muscles and ligaments. Staff will be on site to tape and to give instructions on the use and benefits of KT Tape. KT tape will also demonstrate its new products. Additionally, KT Tape will unveil a limited-edition USA Olympic tape similar to what Team USA team members may wear at the Olympics. Athletes of all levels should stop by to learn about KT Tape.
  • Merchandise. Fans can purchase everything gymnastics, including event-specific tees, official event merchandise, Under Armour and GK leotards, and more, at merchandise booths on the concourse. An Olympic replica from the women’s gymnastics team competitive apparel line for the 2016 Olympic Games will be included in the assortment of leotards available. Autographed copies of 2008 Olympic all-around champion Nastia Liukin’s book, “Finding My Shine,” are available for just $25. In her book, Liukin talks about her personal journey of challenges and success, sharing tips for reaching goals and overcoming obstacles.
How and where to follow the action
This year’s women’s Olympic Trials are easier to follow than ever, whether it is through a smart phone or tablet, online or on NBC.
  • Live competition coverage.
    • Television. NBC will air both days of competition from San Jose live.
      • July 8 – Women’s Olympic Trials, 9 p.m. ET, NBC
      • July 10 – Women’s Olympic Trials, 8 p.m. ET, NBC
    • NBC Olympics. Live simulcast coverage of competition will be available online at NBCOlympics.com. The schedule is listed below:
  • USA Gymnastics on YouTube. USA Gymnastics will post coverage of the events in San Jose, including interviews from media day and post-competition, and clips from podium training.
  • SanJose2016.com. Schedules, general event information, start lists, live scoring, and more are available at SanJose2016.com, which is easily viewable on smart phones and other digital devices.
  • Gymnastics City USA app. The app, which will provide users with the latest event news including competition information, Fan Fest updates, live scoring, merchandise, exclusive opportunities and a rewards program, is available for download now in the Apple and Google Play app stores by searching “Gymnastics City USA.”
  • Social Media. USA Gymnastics is providing live updates and exclusive content, including videos and photos, from the U.S. Olympic Trials on Facebook (facebook.com/USAGymnastics) and Twitter (@USAGym). Gymnastics fans can follow the action easily and join the conversation on Twitter by using the official hashtag of the weekend, #SanJose2016.
  • myusagym iOS app. Fans can follow the scores from the events in San Jose live using the myusagym app for iOS devices available in the iTunes store. Those without iOS devices, can follow the scores at myusagym.com with any mobile device or desktop computer.
2016 is the second consecutive time the City of San Jose has hosted gymnastics’ Olympic Trials. This year’s Trials will determine which gymnasts earn a spot on Team USA to represent the United States at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In recognition of San Jose’s Olympic heritage and the City’s long relationship with the United States Olympic Committee and USA Gymnastics, the City of San Jose will transform itself into “Gymnastics City U.S.A.” throughout the duration of the Trials.

The U.S. Olympic Trials for all sports are a collaborative undertaking between the U.S. Olympic Committee, the national governing bodies and the local organizing committees.

Background information:

  • SAP Center at San Jose. Located in the heart of Silicon Valley, SAP Center at San Jose is the premier sports and entertainment venue in Northern California. Each year, SAP Center hosts approximately 175 events featuring professional and amateur athletes, Olympic athletes, Grammy award-winners, international recording artists, and a variety of performers who appeal to children and families alike. SAP Center at San Jose is home to the San Jose Sharks of the National Hockey League. For more information about SAP Center at San Jose and for a list of upcoming events, visit the SAP Center home page at www.sapcenter.com.

  • San Jose Sports Authority. The San Jose Sports Authority is a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase the City of San Jose’s economic development, visibility and civic pride through sports. Serving as the City's sports commission since in 1991, the Sports Authority has provided leadership and support to attract and host hundreds of sporting events in San Jose and the South Bay. The Sports Authority also supports and operates community, youth and amateur sports programs, including the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame and the REACH Youth Scholarship Program. To learn more, visit www.sjsa.org.