GYMNASTS’ HOMECOMING: Tour Hits Des Moines

Posted on: 10:31 pm, October 12, 2012, by , updated on: 10:33pm, October 12, 2012

The Kellogg’s Tour of Gymnastics arrived in Des Moines Friday night, but the stars who took the stage weren’t the only ones being honored at the event.

There was a little time before the big event to do some celebrating- not just for the gymnasts, but for the man who got them here. Coach Chow was recognized and thanked for all he’s done for the city, state and his students with a gold medal of his own.

“I like the feeling of helping the kids, my students of achieving their goals and their dreams. Nothing can make you feel better than that,” said Coach Chow.

That’s happened in a big way for two of Coach Chow’s students, Gabby Douglas and Shawn Johnson, both whom appeared on stage together, Friday night.

The theme of the night, for everyone involved, was just to have a good time.

“There are no judges there to judge you or give you scores, it’s just mainly about interacting with the crowd and giving high fives,” said Gabby Douglas.

“It’s always great when you get competitors who are now just entertaining you know they`re just doing a show,” said Derek Hough, from Dancing With The Stars.

But competition isn’t far away. Derek Hough and Gold Medalist Shawn Johnson are partners on this season of Dancing With The Stars.

“We`ve been rehearsing like all day every day since we`ve been here. If anything it’s even more stressful because we have to leave and make sure we stay caught up with everything,” said Shawn Johnson.

 But Friday night, the hometown crowd gave her a break from that stress.

“It feels great being back home. My heart was about to beat out of my chest on the flight here because I feel like I`ve been gone forever,” said Johnson.

Gabby said she hopes to make a spot on the team for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.