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Misawa gymnasts welcome new facility, begin team-building routines

Charisma with cheerleaders

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Jody Wynans, the 35th Force Support Squadron commander, addresses families about the gymnastic program in the Weasel’s Den at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Nov. 10, 2018. The program offers beginner, intermediate and advanced level classes. (U.S. Air Force photo by 2nd Lt. Jeremy Garcia)

Families gather around for fun and entertainment

Misawa Air Base cheerleaders perform a routine in the gymnastics area during the grand opening ceremony in the Weasel’s Den at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Nov. 10, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by 2nd Lt. Jeremy Garcia)

Cheerleaders show off their routine

Misawa Air Base cheerleaders perform at the ending of the ceremony in the Weasel’s Den at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Nov. 10, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by 2nd Lt. Jeremy Garcia)

MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan -- The 35th Force Support Squadron hosted a grand opening of the new gymnastics facility in the Weasel's Den at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Nov. 10.
 
Interested members can use the preschool, beginner and intermediate level classes for both cheerleading and tumbling. Its intent is to teach students basic techniques such as straddle rolls and hand stands and then building on these skills in the intermediate level by creating routines. As the bench of coaches grows, the program will offer more classes.
 
It took more than three years from design to construction completion to bring this facility and program offerings to Misawa AB families.   
 
“Anytime we can offer more to our members, it's a win for Team Misawa,” said Lt. Col. Jody Wynans, the 35th FSS commander. “We thank all the organizations who helped make this possible. It has been a very collaborative effort to get the program where it is today.”
 
Stephanie Morris, the head gymnastics coach and military spouse with the 35th Civil Engineer Squadron, explained why gymnastics is important for the Misawa community.
 
“The purpose of this program is to build character and strengthen the children’s athletic skills,” said Morris. “Having a safe place where kids can demonstrate their physical abilities and strengthen their social skills helps them create trust and companionship among their peers.”
 
Not only did Morris stress the importance of the program, but the parents at Misawa AB thought it was beneficial for the children as well.
 
“The best thing about having the program here is that the kids who are interested in learning these techniques and skills can finally participate and learn to be a gymnast,” said Erica Lewis, a parent of one of the children participating in gymnastics. “It will definitely boost the morale of the kids because they have been wanting a program like this for a long time.”
 
For more information, please check the 35th FSS official website at https://www.35fss.com/youth-programs/ or call DSN 226-3220.