Press Release

'Fever on Ice' wins Team USA grant from USOC

Gregory, Petukhov's program one of six to receive $12,000 from USOC

Melissa Gregory and Denis Petukhov perform in a "Fever on Ice" show.
Melissa Gregory and Denis Petukhov perform in a "Fever on Ice" show. (courtesy Melissa Gregory)

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By United States Olympic Committee
(09/20/2011) - Following a 12-day voting period on Facebook, six grand prize winners of the inaugural Team USA Grants have been determined. The grand prize is a $12,000 grant to assist programs within the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic family that aim to improve sustained competitive excellence, instill the Olympic Values and grow sport participation in the U.S.

"On behalf of the U.S. Olympic Committee, a big thanks goes out to the organizations who applied for Team USA Grants and also to all the people that voted on Facebook. Additionally, congratulations to the winning organizations for their commitment to spreading the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect through this initiative," said USOC Chief Communications Officer Patrick Sandusky.

The winners in the Excellence category are PossAbilities Paralympic Training Program and USA Triathlon's Veterans to Victors.

"On behalf of USA Triathlon, we're honored to be voted as a winner in the Excellence category for Team USA Grants," said Chuck Menke, marketing and communications director for USA Triathlon. "We believe the 'Veterans to Victors' program will aid greatly in the development of our Paratriathlon High Performance Plan as we prepare for the sport's debut at the Paralympic Games in 2016. We'd also like to extend our appreciation to the U.S. Olympic Committee for providing this generous opportunity, as well as to our members and online community for voting."

Winning in the Friendship category are Fever on Ice and USRowing's America Rows Program.

"We are very honored and excited to be grand prize winners of the Team USA Grant!" said the founders of Fever on Ice, U.S. Olympic figure skaters Melissa Gregory and Denis Petukhov. "We are eager to put these funds to good use by improving and expanding Fever on Ice and offering this unique fusion of academics and Olympic sports to more schools."

As previously released, the winners of the Respect category are Legends of the Olympiad presented by Art of the Olympians and the Western Wisconsin Speed Team.

Brief descriptions of the categories and grand prize winners are below.

"Excellence"

These programs aim to provide coaching, equipment, sport technology, sport science, or training and competition expenses to competitive athletes in order to facilitate improvement and sport development.

PossAbilities Paralympic Training Program - PossAbilities (Loma Linda, Calif.)
PossAbilities would like to expand its reach as a Paralympic Sport Club. With the grant funds, PossAbilities hopes to provide additional sports equipment, training, travel expenses, and coaching to those athletes interested in participating in its Paralympic handcycling program.

Veterans to Victors - USA Triathlon (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
The Veterans to Victors program will not only help introduce wounded U.S. veterans to the sport of paratriathlon through instructional camps, it will also promote a healthy lifestyle and provide a challenging competitive outlet. In addition, the program will assist USA Triathlon in identifying talented paratriathletes for the 2016 Paralympic Games and beyond. This program can help the U.S. maintain its spot as the world leader in the sport of paratriathlon while also playing a key role in both the physical and mental rehabilitation of veterans.

"Friendship"

These programs aim to introduce Olympic or Paralympic sports to youth, secure instructors, expand the reach of programs to diverse populations, overcome barriers to sport access, and may include providing equipment, facilities and transportation.

Fever on Ice - G&P Love on Ice, LLC (Hartford, Conn.)
Through the Fever on Ice program, students participate in weekly training sessions where they are mentored in mathematics, science, reading and writing - all fused with learning about figure skating and the history of the Olympic movement. The program would like to take Fever on Ice to more schools, communities, cities and states to include more students in the Olympic movement and introduce the sport of figure skating to those who otherwise would not have the opportunity.

USRowing's America Rows Program - USRowing (Princeton, N.J.)
USRowing's membership is presently 97 percent Caucasian. America Rows, a nationwide diversity and inclusion initiative aimed at increasing awareness of rowing and introducing the sport of rowing to a diverse group of Americans, hopes to increase the number of Hispanic and Latino Americans, African Americans and Asian Americans who participate in rowing, as well as the participation of the physically disabled.

"Respect"

These programs aim to teach and cultivate Olympic education through such topics as character and life skill development, health and nutrition, blending sport with culture and education, peace through sport, and a sustainable environment or fair play.

Legends of the Olympiad - Art of the Olympians(Ft. Myers, Fla.)
Art of the Olympians hopes to create a permanent exhibition, Legends of the Olympiad, to connect individuals to Olympic history, discover unsung heroes and Olympic legends, and to learn about the quest for excellence in mind, body and spirit. With this grant money, AOTO will create a multimedia exhibition in its Olympic Sport Gallery to spark imagination, arouse curiosity, inspire creativity and explore Olympic-value based education. This interactive museum display will transform the learning landscape by encouraging individuals to embrace the Olympic values of fair play, respect, friendship, passion for excellence, determination, courage and inspiration.

Western Wisconsin Speed Team - US Speedskating (Onalaska, Wis.)
The goal of the Western Wisconsin Speed Team, a US Speedskating member since 2010, is to develop a successful youth team of 20-30 skaters. Using Olympism and respect as founding pillars of the program, the speed team will help to spread an appreciation of the sport of speedskating, healthful attitudes and a sense fair play in all of its young skaters. Regardless of individual accomplishments, the program will provide an environment in which youthful energy is focused on the Olympic ideals.

About Team USA Grants
As part of its Join Team USA initiative, which provides Americans with opportunities to support and join team USA, the U.S. Olympic Committee created the Team USA Grants to assist organizations within the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic family and also provide a platform for fan interaction. To enter, eligible organizations submitted a video clip describing their program, its need for funding and how it met the criteria of the selected Olympic Value category. The top videos were then posted to the US Olympic Team Facebook page for fans to determine six grand prize winners, two from each category. The categories were excellence, friendship and respect. More information, including the official contest rules, can be found at teamusa.org/teamusagrants.