Roswell, Georgia

July 1, 2012, Department, by NRPA

In Roswell, Georgia, several park facilities played host to international Olympic teams for the 1996 Atlanta Games.Olympic Ambitions 

Municipality: City of Roswell, Georgia.  
Population: 88,000 (39 square miles)
Year Founded: 1965
Annual Budget (operating):  $12.1 million
Agency Head: Joe Glover, Director of Recreation, Parks, Historic & Cultural Affairs

Essential Information:
•    914 acres of parkland, Four Community/Recreation Centers; 3 historic antebellum houses; cultural and visual arts centers; gymnastic/performing arts center, riverfront parks, trails, skate park.
•    Programs: Extensive athletic programs for all ages and skill levels, gymnastics and performing arts programs with classes & competitive teams; numerous events.
•    Awards: Agency of the Year in Georgia, CAPRA Certified since 2002, Gold Medal Award finalist in 2011 and 2012, Named WE CAN! by the National Institute of Health

An Olympian Legacy:
 In 1996, the Olympic Games came to Atlanta.  As a major suburb of Atlanta, Roswell hosted two international Olympic teams in our City:  The Fiji Island Swim Team; and the Belarus Gymnastics Team.  The Fiji Island Team enjoyed our Olympic-size swimming facility, while the Belarus Team practiced in our state-of-the-art gymnastics training facility.

Following the Games, and mainly through the efforts of Cindy Furman, the Coordinator of the Gymnastics and Performing Arts program and facility, several of the Belarus coaches and team members returned to Roswell to teach.  The level of instruction increased as these world-class athletes and coaches shared their expertise and love of the sport with the children of Roswell.  Now, 16 years later, several of these coaches and athletes are still a vital part of the Roswell Gymnastics program which has grown to capacity and has several Olympic hopefuls for the 2016 Olympic Games.