February 06, 2019
By: Cassie Schmidt
I can be the first to admit that I don’t know everything there is to know about gymnastics. I know the girls events consist of uneven bars, vault, floor and the balance beam. I know the boys do six events, the floor and vault being the same as the girls, but they also have the pommel horse, rings, high bar and parallel bars. While I may not be able to score the performances of any of those events, I can however, tell how just how truly exciting they are to watch.
Last weekend, I was able to attend the 21st Annual Brian Babcock Invitational at the Parkettes Gym in Allentown. The girls hosted their own Invitational the weekend prior, but this weekend was just for the guys. The meet had boys competing all the way from level 4 to level 10. I was there to witness the highest level of competition; Level 10. The invitational attracts competition from across the United States and abroad. There was a team there from Canada this year and many from within the U.S.
The Brian Babcock Invitational in its’ 21st year was named after 1985 USA World Championship team member and 6-time US National Team Member, Brian Babcock. Following the, Babcock was a boys program director at Parkettes for 7 years. Bill & Donna Strauss named the Invitational after Babcock after passing away from myeldoyplasia, commonly referred to as “smoldering leukemia”. After undergoing a bone marrow transplant, in efforts to defeat his disease, Babcock lost his battle in October of 1998. Since then, the Invitational has been in his name in efforts to help carry on his name and everything he did for the sport as well as what he did during his time at Parkettes.
The event was a pleasure to be apart of and after seeing the turnout you know that this Invitational will certainly never waiver in the years to come. ‘Misses’ or Donna Strauss spoke on how empowering and exciting the event was. She expressed how awesome it was to see the boys cheering for each other during the team events, no matter the team they represented. This event was and always will be open to the public, so if you missed it this year be sure to catch it in 2020! You can also check out my coverage of the event on tonight’s TV2 Sports Scene show at 6, 6:30 and 9PM.