Elinor Rogers-Class of 2019 Courtland High School
Elinor has been at Paragon for nine years and will be attending University of Iowa were she will be competing in gymnastics as a Hawkeye.
"Wow. It’s hard to believe that gymnastics and I have been together now for about 14 years. And while we’ve definitely had our ups and downs, I wouldn’t trade a second of it. This sport has shaped me into the person I am today. It has given me life-long friendships - a family. It has given me countless, unforgettable memories that I will forever hold onto and cherish. I can’t thank this sport enough for teaching me that even though you may fall over and over and over again, you still get back up and you try again. Despite how hard it is, or how badly you want to give up, always remember your end goal, push through, and persevere.
I would like to thank all of my coaches for never giving up on me. Thank you
for pushing me to reach my dreams, and for being my life mentors and teaching me all of these valuable lessons that will stick with me throughout my whole life.
I would also like to thank my teammates who have had by back through thick and thin. These girls are literally my family; heck we’ve seen each other bleed, sweat, cry….. I mean they’ve all seen me fall on my face countless times again. They’ve made me laugh until I cry and have given me so many indelible memories. They have been some of my biggest motivators, and in all honesty, I would not be where I am today without them. Love you guys.
And of course, I cannot thank my parents and my brother enough.They have been through it all with me - all the highs, and all the lows. They have made countless sacrifices in order to see that my dreams come true. Thanks for paying the bills, travelling with me across the country, and just being the best supporters. I seriously could not have done any of this without you. Thank you for always being there for me. I love you so much.
If I have learned anything from this sport, it’s to be patient with yourself. It’s easy to get caught up in thinking you aren’t good enough, or you’re not where you should be. But nobody’s perfect. Everyone falls. Everyone gets hurt, everyone gets upset and frustrated, has bad days; we’re all human here. But all of those bumps in the road only make your victories that much more meaningful. Mistakes are how you learn and grow; embrace that.
And finally, all I have to say, is enjoy every second. Enjoy the victories, enjoy the mistakes; it’s all part of the journey. It’s a tough sport, there’s no denying that. So remember that just the fact that you are trying, and you are taking that leap of faith already makes you absolutely incredible. Trust yourself and your abilities and enjoy the ride. If things get tough, don’t forget why you started, and ALWAYS remember to have fun with it. After all, how many other sports do you get to fly?
Thank you Paragon for everything, I am so glad I was able to be a part of this program and represent for the last nine years. I’m so excited to continue this incredible sport at the University of Iowa as a Hawkeye!! Paragon will always hold a special place in my heart, even while out in the corn fields ;P Go Hawks"
Rose Fanara- Class of 2018 Riverbend High School
Rose has been part of Paragon for the last 16 1/2 years and will be attending West Chester University where she will be competing gymnastics and majoring in History.
"Back in 1986, a wise high school senior said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” (Ferris Bueller). My parents made me watch Ferris Bueller’s Day Off the summer before high school but looking back on my senior year that quote has never resonated more. It seems like just yesterday I was flittering with the little butterflies (Miss Risё) and I sure have dodged and received a few mud pies in my time at Paragon (Miss Rachael). I am so thankful the springs in my feet (Miss Sandy) have helped me reach my goals as a gymnast. After all, they were all in my head (Ken). I found that all I had to do was get out of the chalk (Ryan) and embrace my powerful inner saurus (Ashley) to fulfill my dreams. To each of the coaches I’ve ever had, you are right. Thank you for never giving up on me. I am so proud to have represented Paragon my entire JO career and look forward to continuing in college! Go Rams!"
Casey Meinert-Class of 2018 Mountain Veiw High School
Casey started gymnastics in 4th grade so she has been a gymnast for 9 years. She is graduating from Mountain View High School and will attend Appalacian State University where she will be in the Plemmons leadership program. She will major in Nutrition and Dietetics and will be pole vaulting on the track team.
USAG’s motto “begin here, go anywhere” truly does describe my gymnastics experience. When I stepped into a gym for the first time, I immediately fell in love with the sport of gymnastics. I did not start training and competing seriously until my middle school years but the skills I learned in gymnastics opened the door into a world of athletics in high school. I will graduate with twelve varsity letters, and I have no doubt that if I hadn’t been a gymnast first, I would not have found success outside of the gym. Gymnastics has taught me dedication, discipline and left me with a strong work ethic that will not be forgotten. During my time as a gymnast I was beyond blessed with AMAZING coaches and teammates who always saw and brought out the best in me. I loved being a member of Paragon’s Xcel team for the past five years and will always value my experience here. Thank you to all of my coaches and teammates, this journey would be incomplete without you. Thank you Mom and Dad for paying the bills and being my biggest fans, this journey never would have taken place without you!
Maci Wineberger -Class of 2015 Riverbend High School
Maci has been part of Paragon for the last 16 years. She will be attending University of Mary Washington and will be a coach at Paragon!
"Gymnastics has taught me so many things, not just as an athlete, but as a person too. The many people I have come across and who have come into my life, these and so many others, have made such a huge impact and I don’t know that I would do without them. Thanks Mom and dad for spending endless amounts of time and money just so I can do what I love. You guys are the best and I couldn’t have gotten through all of it without you. Thank you to all my teammates, past and present, for always putting up with all I gave you. I wouldn’t trade any of you for the world. To all the coaches I have had, thank you for helping me get where I am today and for continuously pushing me and believing in me even when I didn’t believe in myself. To all my younger teammates: make every moment you get the best you can possibly make it. Its not going to be easy by any means, but all of you are incredibly talents and I know each one of you can do whatever it is you want to do if you put your mind to it.
Paragon has been nothing but wonderful to me all these year. Thank you so much to everyone who has supported me. It truly does mean so much to me. Remember, once a gymnast, ALWAYS a gymnast!"