via press release:
NEW YORK, April 9, 2012 – Nick News with Linda Ellerbee will introduce you to some dedicated and talented teen competitors who are also Olympic hopefuls in the new half-hour special, “Going for the Games, Glory and Gold: Will These Kids Make It?,” premiering Sunday, April 15, at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT) on Nickelodeon. Which, if any of them, will make it? And if they make the team, will they win a medal?
The kids featured in the special are constantly training and have little time to hang with friends.
“I smell like chlorine all the time,” says 16-year-old swimmer Missy Franklin of Centennial, Colo., who trains anywhere from seven to eight times a week.
They’re so busy training that some of them are home-schooled or even leave home. “I had a huge lab kit sent to my house,” says 17-year-old table tennis player Michael Landers of Old Westbury, N.Y. “I mean, it was the worst thing ever.”
“I live with a host family,” says 16-year-old gymnast Gabrielle Douglas of Virginia Beach, Va. “When my mom left, I cried.”
They’re still kids, but they’re also athletes, potential Olympic athletes, and their dreams of making it to London this summer make them willing to do whatever it takes.
“It gave us the correct discipline that we needed to be good at something,” says 18-year-old weightlifter Darrel Barnes of Florissant, Mo.
“The main thing is to have a clear mind and let yourself do what you already know how to do,” says Darrel’s twin brother and fellow weightlifter, Darren Barnes.
“For young athletes, the Olympics are the stuff of which dreams are made,” says Ellerbee. But it takes more than dreaming to make it to the Olympics.”
“They’re what I’ve been training for the past four years or so,” says Michael, the table tennis player. “It’s what I’ve basically dedicated my entire life to.”
“Sometimes, I come in and feel like, ‘Can I just take the day off?’” says gymnast Gabrielle. “But I came here not to play around.”
“I don’t want to just make it to the Olympics,” says 16-year-old diver Kassidy from Houston, Texas. “I want to win the Olympics.”
Nick News, produced by Lucky Duck Productions, is now in its 21st year and is the longest-running kids’ news show in television history. It has built its reputation on the respectful and direct way it speaks to kids about the important issues of the day. Over the years, Nick News has received more than 21 Emmy nominations and recently won its ninth Emmy Award for Under the Influence: Kids of Alcoholics in the category of Outstanding Children’s Nonfiction Program. Additional Emmy wins for outstanding children’s programming include: The Face of Courage: Kids Living with Cancer (2010); Coming Home: When Parents Return from War (2009); The Untouchable Kids of India (2008); Private Worlds: Kids and Autism (2007); Never Again: From the Holocaust to the Sudan (2005); Faces of Hope: The Kids of Afghanistan (2002) and What Are You Staring At? (1998). In addition, in 1995, the entire series won the Emmy. In 2009, Nick News was honored with the Edward R. Murrow Award for best Network News Documentary for Coming Home: When Parents Return from War — the first-ever kids’ television program to receive this prestigious award. Nick News has also received three Peabody Awards, including a personal award given to Ellerbee for explaining the impeachment of President Clinton to kids, as well as a Columbia duPont Award and more than a dozen Parents’ Choice Awards.