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The much anticipated movie for the American Girl doll of the year, who just happens to be a gymnast, An American Girl: McKenna Shoots for the Stars will be out this summer – specifically July 14 at 8pm on NBC right before the Olympics and it will be available on DVD & Blu-Ray July 3rd. The trailer for the movie is out and can be found on YouTube. You can also read my interview with one of the movie’s main characters, Toulane, played by Ysa Penarejo.

The story is about McKenna Brooks, a young gymnast with her sites set on the Olympics. The side story has to do with keeping the balance in your life as McKenna struggles in school. An injury seems like the end of the world to McKenna at first, but ends up being the catalyst for taking on other challenges in her life. It will probably have just enough gymnastics in the movie to make gymnastic fans not want to change the channel and the story line will be popular with girls and their parents, too. In a way it reminds me of a Disney-fied version of Stick It– specifically the pretend telephone scene right at the beginning, but I think it will be fun!

Official movie synopsis: Meet McKenna Brooks™, a determined and confident young gymnast, in this all-new modern-day adventure. McKenna™ is on track to make the regional competitive gymnastics team but off-track in school, where she’s suddenly struggling to keep up. When her teacher suggests a tutor, she’s embarrassed and desperate to keep it a secret from her friends. Then a bad fall at the gym sidetracks her from her favorite sport. Will she recover in time to make the team? Can she succeed in school, too? McKenna™ needs to focus on her strengths to overcome her challenges – and, with the help of family and friends, find a way to believe in herself again.

And Olympic legend, Cathy Rigby, stars as McKenna’s coach. Got your DVR set?

For more on American Girl’s McKenna, her collection (much of which is already sold out – so glad we got her bars and beam when we did), and more on the movie, visit You can also get her books – which my daughter loved – McKenna (American Girl) (American Girl Today) and McKenna (American Girl) (American Girl Today).

Categories : Gymnastics, Olympics, Videos
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We are watching preseason NHL hockey tonight and I just saw my new favorite commercial!! Technically this is part of the NHL’s Hockey is for Everyone public service campaign, but the focus is on girls and dispelling the notion that hockey is a boy’s sport. “Whoever says girls can’t play hockey hasn’t seen me” is the best line!

I love that they show that girls can be girls – purple nail polish and all – and still like to put on their skates, shoulder pads and helmets and skate FAST. I love that it talks about making friends through hockey. I love that it shows little girls doing hockey drills side by side with older girls.

Well done NHL!! This commercial is a great way to show girls that hockey is a fun, challenging and rewarding sport that everyone can play.

Categories : Ice Hockey, On TV, Videos
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The NCAA Pacific Athletic Conference (PAC-10) has released a series of commercials celebrating 25 years of women’s sports in their conference. One focuses on the fans, one on the athletes and my personal favorite – one on the impact of the victories – big or small – on the next generation of student athletes. Click to play below or watch on YouTube.

WomenTalkSports highlighted the athlete video which is narrated by Natalie Coughlin. There is also one celebrating the PAC-10 fans. Check out all three videos, they really are very powerful.

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