January 30, 2007 > Olympians return to Union City
Olympians return to Union City
Olympic greats gather for Willie Davenport Track and Field Clinic
Each year, the spirit of Willie Davenport returns to Union City. James Logan High School's track and field area becomes a key destination for past Olympian greats who gather to honor the great sprinter, reminisce and spend time with future Olympic hopefuls and others who want to learn from track and field legends. This year, Saturday, February 3rd is the magic day and Logan Coach Lee Webb, host of the event, expects several thousand to attend. This is quite an increase from the small group of 60 who attended the first gathering 20 years ago. During the all day event, attendees will have an opportunity to mingle with athletes whose names are indelibly printed in sports history.
A leader on the track for many years as one of the fastest men to sprint and hurdle, five-time Olympian Willie Davenport led an exemplary life off the track as well, serving as Director of the Mayor-President Council for Youth Opportunity in Baton Rouge in 1972, earning a Master's degree from Southern University and becoming the first U.S. sprinter to compete in both Summer and Winter Olympic Games. Davenport was happy to lend his support to local coach Lee Webb of Union City's James Logan High School when he proposed the creation a Track and Field Clinic for aspiring athletes to "learn by doing."
Davenport's legacy lives on through the efforts of Webb and the enthusiastic participation by Olympic champions who return year after year. Those attending the clinic can move between disciplines and meet all the athletes. Participants are free to join instruction and critique sessions on events including Triple Jump/Long Jump, High Jump, Pole Vault, Sprints, Hurdles, Distance, Shot Put, Discus and Javelin. Each year, new faces stop by. Coach Webb says that the circle of "Olympian friends" who attend grows. "They are like family," says Webb.
Some of the Olympians expected to attend: Mike Powell-World Record Holder-Long Jump; Roger Kingdom-2 Time Olympic Champion-110 Meter Hurdles; Al Joyner-Olympic Champion-Triple Jump; Dick Fosbury-Olympic Champion-High Jump; Tom Petranoff-Former World Record Holder-Javelin; Tommie Smith-Olympic Champion-200 Meters; John Carlos-Olympian; Mel Pender-Olympic Champion-Sprints; Eddie Hart-Olympic Champion-Sprints; Charlie Greene-Olympic Champion-Sprints; Wyomia Tyus-Olympic Champion-100 Meters-2 Times; Edith McGuire-Olympic Champion-200 Meters; Tonie Campbell-4 Time Olympian-Hurdles; Thomas Hill-Olympian-Hurdles; LaTanya Sheffield-Olympian- 400 Meter Hurdles; Reynaldo Brown-Olympian-High Jump; Marilyn King-2 Time Olympian-Pentathlon; James Robinson-11 Time U.S. National Champion-800 Meters; Hal Connolly-3 time Olympian-Hammer; Wolfgang Schmidt-Olympian-Discus; Mac Wilkins-Olympic Champion-Discus; Billy Mills-Olympic Champion-10,000 Meters; Stephanie Brown-2 Time Olympian-Discus; Pam Dukes-Olympian-Shot Put; Karin Smith-American Record Holder-Javelin; Suzy Powell-American Record Holder-Discus and believe it or not, many more.
Willie Davenport Olympian Track and Field Clinic
James Logan High School, 1800 H Street, Union City
Saturday, February 3rd, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (youths ages 4-12, 8 a.m.-12 noon)
$20 individuals, $350 teams, $10 youths
Learn by doing from the Olympians
For more information contract, Lee Webb(510) 471-2520 Ext. 5113
Proceeds go to Special Olympics, Olympians in Need, and local track and field teams.
Additional Olympian activities:
Evening of Champions
Olympic champions will also be in town for a special "Evening of Champions" on Saturday, February 3rd at the new Union City Sports Center. This dinner program will be attended by many notable Olympians and each table will host an Olympian. Proceeds will go to support community track and field, Special Olympics and Olympians in Need programs. Festivities will include an evening of jazz and a silent auction of sports memorabilia
Formal dinner and evening with the Olympians
Union City Sports Center, Union City Blvd., Union City
Saturday, February 3rd, 6:30 p.m.-10 p.m.
$60 per ticket or $600 per table which includes eight individuals and two athletes
50 per cent or $300 of table costs will be considered a donation in support of Coach Lee Webb's Olympian Track and Field Clinic.
Program will consist of music, catered dinner, eight Olympians giving motivational speeches, an introduction of all Olympians in attendance and comedy relief from "Krazy George" Henderson.
Highlights from last year can be seen at website: www.worldathletesonline.com/champs/
For more information contact Ron Mickle (408) 229-8854 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
For those who prefer to rub shoulders with Olympians on the golf course, The Willie Davenport Celebrity Golf Tournament will allow you to match your skills with Olympians at the Metropolitan Golf Course in Oakland. This event will be held on Friday, February 2nd.
Willie Davenport Celebrity Golf Tournament
Metropolitan Golf Links, 10051 Doolittle Dr. Oakland.
Friday, February 2nd, 11:30 a.m., shot gun start, four player scramble
$150 per person, includes green fees, cart, tee prizes, goodie bag, and buffet lunch
Awards to teams, closet to the pin, and longest drive
Toyota has sponsored a car on all the par threes for a hole in one
For more information contact, Vivian DiSano (650) 438-3837
Olympians at Bay Area Schools
If you are interested in an Olympian coming to your school, please contact Lee Webb (510) 471-2520 Ext. 5113. Olympians will be available Tuesday - Friday, January 30-February 2.