Natchez Gymnastics Club

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 23, 2001

College football kicks off this Saturday with a small slate of games. But for a group of area children, it means the kick off of the gymnastics season.

The Natchez Gymnastics Club will celebrate National Gymnastics Day at the Natchez Mall from noon to 2 p.m. During the club’s two-hour session, area gymnastics will perform warm-up drills, tumbling exercises and floor routines. It’s the club official kick off to the gymnastics season.

&uot;We want to wish the girls good luck for the year,&uot; said Christy Delaney.

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Fifteen girls ages 6-13 and ranging from various skill levels will perform. The club has been in training since the early part of the summer. The club’s first meet should be scheduled for October in Baton Rouge, La., Delaney said.

&uot;They’re doing great. We’ve got a lot of new girls,&uot; Delaney said. &uot;They’re really catching on fast. They’ve put in long hours and putting in good work.&uot;

In particular, Stevie Dillinger has fared well, Deaney said. The 13-year-old has just moved up from a level four to level five gymnast. There are several levels of gymnastics. Each gymnast must pass skill tests to move up to the next level. USA Gymnastics judges each gymnast.

&uot;She’s a powerful tumbler. Very strong,&uot; Delaney said. &uot;We expect her to explode in level five.&uot;

Beth Floyd has also done well. She just graduated form level three to level four. The other gymnasts are coming along just fine , too.

&uot;We’re really excited,&uot; Delaney said. &uot;We got a good little bunch of gymnasts coming up in level two and four.&uot;

The club hopes to make about 15 meets this fall and winter.

Kim Strawbridge is Delaney’s assistant coach.