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|CPOW Weekly Update for July 15, 2013|
By Committee for the Preservation of Olympic Wrestling
SUMMARY: Wrestlers return to ancient Olympia, Greece, the birthplace of the Olympic Games for competition July 20-21… USA team to Olympia, Greece features two Olympians and Greek-American World medalist Helen Maroulis… CPOW helps launch a series of weekly Google+ On Air Hangouts to promote effort…. Billy Baldwin launches celebrity auction items to benefit Keep Olympic Wrestling… USA Wrestling hosting largest wrestling event in world in Fargo, N.D. with Keep Olympic Wrestling theme… FILA’s new ad campaign is “All Nations. All People. For All Time”… USA Wrestling celebrates Olympic Day with 22 Olympians at World Team Trials in Stillwater, Okla… Rumble On the Rails poster on sale to benefit CPOW… Keep Olympic Wrestling website redesigned… Keep Olympic Wrestling Dual held at U.S. Olympic Training Center featuring Olympic freestyle wrestling… Mike Rosati named CPOW Chief of Operations… Keep Olympic Wrestling float included in July 4th Parade in Greeley, Colo.
The Committee for the Preservation of Olympic Wrestling (CPOW) is bringing back its weekly update on Mondays, informing the wrestling community and the general public on its activities.
CPOW is a group of wrestling leaders assembled by USA Wrestling. Its charge is to oversee the effort within the United States to Keep Wrestling In the Olympics, as part of a coordinated international strategy designed to retain wrestling in the Olympics.
On May 29, the International Olympic Committee Executive Board voted wrestling as one of three sports for the shortlist of candidates for the final provisional sports spot in the 2020 and 2024 Summer Olympic Games during its meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia. The final decision will be made on September 8 at the IOC General Assembly in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
International Relations News and Effort
·FILA, the international wrestling federation, has announced that wrestlers from around the world, will come together at the birthplace of the Olympic Movement – Olympia, Greece –for a Senior International Tournament, July 20-21. The finals, for all weight classes and styles, will be staged at the International Olympic Academy and shared via livestream on the official FILA Facebook page. Select youth wrestlers will participate in an exhibition at the Palaestra, the original Olympic wrestling stadium. In addition to the matches, wrestlers will have the opportunity to walk the grounds of Ancient Olympia, including the Palaestra and the Stadium at Olympia. Both of these locations hold significant meaning to the sport of wrestling, as heroes of the sport, such as Milo of Croton, have stepped foot on the very same ground. We look forward to returning to our roots with this special event that shows the passion of the sport of wrestling. We want our wrestlers to reach back and feel what those special athletes on the fields of Olympia did those many years ago when our sport helped start the Olympic Games,” said FILA President Nenad Lalovic.
·USA Wrestling pulled together a competitive group of men and women wrestlers to compete in the event in Ancient Olympia, Greece. A pair of 2012 Olympians, Elena Pirozhkova and Ellis Coleman are part of the team. Pirozhkova won a World title in 2002 and a World silver medal in 2010. Coleman, famous for his Flying Squirrel move in Greco-Roman, will compete in both freestyle and Greco-Roman in Greece. Also on the U.S. team is Greek-American Helen Maroulis, a World silver medalist. Maroulis has family in Greece and has travelled there often, but has never wrestled in her family’s native country. “I go to Greece a lot to visit family, but we go straight to the islands. I found out we are going to the mainland, to the big city, and I’ve always wanted to wrestle in Greece. I am excited to experience wrestling in that country,” said Maroulis.
·CPOW, in conjunction with USA Wrestling and FILA, debuted a series of weekly Google+ On Air Hangouts on July 11th, featuring Olympian, World medalist and Keep Olympic Wrestling leader Jake Herbert. He was the first of several current and former Olympic wrestlers as well as global wrestling leaders who will educate and answer questions from fans about the Keep Olympic Wrestling movement. Wrestling is the first Olympic sport to hold a series of Google+ On Air Hangouts. Some of the biggest names in global wrestling and the Keep Olympic Wrestling movement will participate in the series including Olympic gold medalist Jordan Burroughs, FILA President Nenad Lalovic, FILA representative and Olympic gold medalist Daniel Igali, Executive Director of USA Wrestling Rich Bender, CPOW chairman Bill Scherr, actor Billy Baldwin, and more.
·CPOW and actor Billy Baldwin announced an auction to benefit the Keep Olympic Wrestling movement. The auction, hosted online by eBay, will feature various items from Hollywood celebrities, wrestling and MMA legends, and one-of-a-kind experiences. Some of the items people can bid on include: Rio 2016 Summer Games packages, including event tickets and VIP access, a walk-on role on “Boardwalk Empire” and a meet and greet with Steve Buscemi, a premier of “Foxcatcher” starring Mark Ruffalo, Channing Tatum, and Sienna Miller, a one-hour training session with “The Natural” Randy Couture; includes 3 days/2 nights at the D Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, a meet with Jay Leno at “The Tonight Show” with a backstage visit to the legendary green room, an afternoon with Mario Lopez on the set of “Extra,” lunch with Tom Arnold, a visit to the Mike& Mike Show live at ESPN and lunch with Mike Golic, a pre-fight experience with IMPACT star and former Olympian Kurt Angle and more. Most of these celebrities have a strong connection to wrestling. The first of three auctions launched on Friday, July 12th at www.ebay.com/savewrestling. "The values of work ethic, discipline and mental toughness that are instilled through training and competition transcend the sport of wrestling,” said Baldwin, a high school and college wrestler and a member of CPOW.
·The largest wrestling tournament in the world, the ASICS/Vaughan Junior and Cadet National Championships, which is hosted by USA Wrestling, has been started in Fargo, North Dakota and will run July 13-20. Over 4,000 boys and girls, aged 15-18, come together to compete in the Olympic styles of freestyle and Greco-Roman in an indoor football stadium, with 23 mats filling the floor of the arena. Every match of the event is streamed live to the world through a partnership with USA Wrestling and Flowrestling. A number of activities promoting the Keep Olympic Wrestling movement, have been scheduled. Known just as “Fargo” in U.S. wrestling circles, the event shows the popularity of wrestling in the United States and the passion that young people have for the Olympic styles of the sport.
·FILA President Nenad Lalovic announced an updated advertising campaign for the federation. FILA moved into the second phase of its campaign with ads entitled “All Nations. All People. For All Time.” It reflects some of the themes that are central to the sport: wrestling is everywhere, wrestling is for everyone and wrestling is an original sport.The interactive campaign will used in various print and online media outlets around the world in the upcoming months. The new ad includes an image of two girl wrestlers from the United States, Patricia Arana and Viviana Garcia of California, who competed in the United 4 Wrestling competition in Los Angeles on May 19.
·Olympic Day is one of the most important celebrations of the Olympic movement and USA Wrestling and CPOW took an active role in its celebration. The U.S. World Team Trials, held in Stillwater, Okla., June 21-22, was named an official Olympic Day event by the U.S. Olympic Committee. Olympic Day has been recognized each year since 1948 to commemorate the birth of the modern Olympic Games on June 23, 1894. Olympic Day's mission is to promote fitness, well-being, culture and education, while promoting the Olympic ideals of fair play, perseverance and respect in every corner of the globe. At the World Team Trials, USA Wrestling set up a photo featuring 22 past Olympic wrestlers and coaches, including two-time Olympic champion John Smith and Olympic champions Jake Varner, Kevin Jackson, Rulon Gardner, Brandon Slay, Wayne Wells and Steve Fraser. CPOW also took an active role in the presentation of the event with a number of production enhancements to make the competition more exciting, in addition to funding a national telecast of the event on the Universal Sports Network.
·Award winning international wrestling photographer John Sachs created a Limited Edition "Rumble on the Rails" Commemorative poster available for sale. The Rumble on the Rails was an international wrestling match between the United States, Iran and Russia on May 15 in New York City’s Vanderbilt Hall, located in Grand Central Terminal. The poster costs $20.20, with a portion of the sales donated to USA Wrestling's 2020 Vision Campaign to help Keep Olympic Wrestling. The poster design is by Mark Kosman, who has developed numerous quality wrestling-related projects.
·USA Wrestling and the CPOW has launched a new Keep Olympic Wrestling website, working with Sport Ngin, a leading provider of web software and mobile applications for youth, amateur, and professional sports based in Minneapolis, Minn. The newly designed website, www.keepolympicwrestling.com, is providing expanded support to the 2020 Vision Campaign to keep wrestling a core Olympic sport. "The website has been and will continue to be an important touchpoint with the public concerning our cause," said Rich Bender, Executive Director of USA Wrestling. “Our mission is to enhance the sports experience for all participants in all sports, and we are honored to support the Wrestling community in their drive to keep Wrestling in the Olympics,” said Travis Shives, of Sport Ngin.
·USA Wrestling hosted a Keep Olympic Wrestling Dual at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. on July 13, featuring men’s freestyle wrestlers from the United States, Kazakhstan and Canada. This friendly dual was held as a fundraiser for a local charity, Care and Share, which provided food for those in need in the community, as well as support for first responders and families affected by the recent fires in Colorado Springs. The event was streamed live to the world on TheMat.tv, and was another example of cooperation between wrestling nations in support of Olympic wrestling.
·CPOW has named Mike Rosati as its Chief of Operations. Rosati first joined the 2020 Vision: Keep the Dream Alive campaign in March as a liaison between USA Wrestling and CPOW. As the campaign evolved, Mike took on many responsibilities beyond the scope of his initial position. “Designating Mike as the Chief of Operations is not so much about additional responsibilities to come, but to better reflect the job that he has already been doing,” said USA Wrestling Executive Director Rich Bender. Rosati, a former wrestler from Rider University and a twelve-year veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard, has taken a 6-month leave-of-absence to assist USA Wrestling and CPOW.
·The Fourth of July, America’s independence celebration each year, is celebrated across the nation with traditional activities such as parades and community activities. In the city of Greeley, Colo., the annual July 4 parade included a Keep Olympic Wrestling float, designed by the Predator Wrestling Club and its supporters. The float featured wrestling mats, a podium, and “Save Olympic Wrestling” and “2020 Vision” banners. The young wrestlers, several dressed in togas and carrying symbolic torches, jumped around to music played by a DJ on the float. The club also made T-shirts and posters to send the message that they have dreams of becoming Olympic wrestlers and will do whatever they can to keep those dreams alive. “This was big motivation for the kids. They needed something to latch onto,” said Coach Lance Mijares.
We ask one thing from the wrestling community. Please stay informed and stay involved. You can do this by registering on www.KeepOlympicWrestling.com. We will give you weekly updates on the activities of CPOW and the international wrestling community so you can truly be a part of the solution.