Merry Christmas from the JWC!

by Thom Van Vleck

Me driving my Ol' Truck in the Christmas parade pulling our float.

Recently the Jackson Weightlifting Club had a float in the Kirksville Kiwanis Christmas Parade.  The take collections for warm hats, gloves, and scarves for the needy and we added to their collection. We decorated up the truck and trailer and my kids got about a dozen friends to walk in the parade, hand out candy, and ride on the trailer that was covered in lights and loaded with boxes wrapped to look like presents.  Sure, the “presents” were really my boxes used for weight training but it looked good!

My lovely wife rode on the trailer. She has been my personal Christmas present that I've gotten to wake up to every year for nearly 3 decades!

What you can’t see is my two oldest were carrying a JWC banner to lead our group and all the kids handing out candy along the side.  A bonus was it was Ethan Van Vleck’s birthday so we all went out for a birthday dinner afterwards.

We are a small town but I'd guess about 500 folks were out for the parade! And Santa was even there....though he looks suspiciously familiar...like someone I know.

The Jackson Weightlifting Club has been a part of my family’s life for over 75 years and 4 generations.  What you see is the 5th generation.  The JWC is much more than just lifting weights.  So, from the JWC family to your family….Merry CHRISTmas and a happy 2015!  As my Grandpa Dalton Jackson, the founder of the club would ALWAYS say, “The best is yet to come”!   Amen!

A Little Christmas Story

by Denny Habecker

When four of Santa’s elves got sick, the trainee elves did not produce toys as fast as the regular ones, and Santa began to feel the Pre-Christmas pressure.

Then Mrs. Claus told Santa her Mother was coming to visit, which stressed Santa even more.

When he went to harness the reindeer, he found that three of them were about to give birth and two others had jumped the fence and were out, Heaven knows where.

Then when he began to load the sleigh, one of the floorboards cracked, the toy bag fell to the ground and all the toys were scattered.

Frustrated, Santa went in the house for a cup of apple cider and a shot of rum. When he went to the cupboard, he discovered the elves had drunk all the cider and hidden the liquor.

In his frustration, he accidentally dropped the cider jug, and it broke into hundreds of little glass pieces all over the kitchen floor. He went to get the broom and found the mice had eaten all the straw off the end of the broom.

Just then the doorbell rang, and an irritated Santa marched to the door, yanked it open, and there stood a little angel with a great big Christmas tree.

The angel said very cheerfully, ‘Merry Christmas, Santa. Isn’t this a lovely day? I have a beautiful tree for you. Where would you like me to stick it?’

And so began the tradition of the little angel on top of the Christmas tree.

OLE JOHN AND SALLY

BY DAVE GLASGOW

(A SEASONAL, NON-LIFTING, BUT UP-LIFTING STORY)

I ENJOY HISTORY, ESPECIALLY MY OWN FAMILY HISTORY. ONE STORY I HEARD MANY TIMES WAS TOLD BY MY DAD, JOHN. IT WAS ABOUT MY GREAT GRAND DAD, WHO I HAVE ALWAYS CALLED ‘OLE JOHN’, TO DIFFERENTIATE HIM FROM MY DAD. I THINK THIS IS THE APPROPRIATE TIME OF YEAR TO PASS THE STORY ON.

OLE JOHN WAS A SOLDIER IN THE ‘CIVIL WAR’. HE WAS IN THE CAVALRY, WHICH SEEMED ODD TO ME, AS HE WAS A SAILOR FROM THE TIME HE WAS TWELVE YEARS OLD. AT ANY RATE, HE WAS CAPTURED BY THE CONFEDERATES AND SENT TO THE NOTORIOUS PRISON CAMP, ANDERSONVILLE, IN GEORGIA. THE CONDITIONS IN THIS CAMP WERE HORRID. MANY DIED OF DISEASE, STARVATION AND JUST PLAIN LOSS OF HOPE. SOMEHOW, OLE JOHN SURVIVED, BUT HE DID NOT GO UNSCATHED. HE LOST ALL HIS UPPER TEETH AND HAD PERMANENT SKELETAL PROBLEMS FROM SCURY AND MALNUTRITION.

AS THE STORY GOES, OLE JOHN TOLD HOW THE MEMBERS OF THE SALVATION ARMY (WHOM I HAVE ALWAYS CALLED ‘SALLY’) WOULD SNEAK UP TO THE WALLS AT NIGHT AND THROW SWEET POTATOES OVER THE FENCE TO THE PRISONERS. HE SAID THAT THIS KIND, HUMANITARIAN GESTURE WAS ONE OF THE REASONS HE MADE IT OUT ALIVE.

SO, EVERY CHRISTMAS, WHEN MY KIDS WERE GROWING UP, I WOULD ENCOURAGE AMBER AND DEREK TO ‘THROW SOMETHING IN SALLY’S POT’, IN HONOR OF OLE JOHN AND TO HELP OUT SALLY, WITHOUT WHOM WE WOULD , PROBABLY, NOT BE AROUND.

THEN, A FEW YEARS BACK, I WAS LISTENING TO THE RADIO AND THEY WERE SPEAKING TO SOME MEMBERS OF THE SALVATION ARMY, AS IT WAS CHRISTMAS TIME AND THEY WERE IN NEED OF MONIES AND CLOTHING DONATIONS TO GIVE TO THOSE IN NEED. NATURALLY, I THOUGHT OF OLE JOHN. SO, WHEN I HAD TIME I DID A LITTLE RESEARCH ABOUT ‘SALLY’. WHAT I DISCOVERED DISAPPOINTED ME, GREATLY.

SEEMS THAT SALLY WAS STARTED IN ENGLAND IN 1865, AND WAS NOT FOUNDED IN THE STATES UNTIL 1880! CLEARLY WELL PAST THE TIME OF OLE JOHN’S CONFINEMENT!! IMMEDIATELY, QUESTIONS FORMED IN MY MIND AS TO THE VALIDITY OF THIS CONTRADITION IN THE STORY. UNFORTUNATELY, ANYONE WHO WOULD KNOW THE ANSWER TO THIS MYSTERY HAS LONG SINCE PASSED.

AFTER A LOT OF DILIBERATIONS, I CAME TO SOME OF MY OWN CONCLUSIONS. COULD IT BE IT WAS THE BAPTISTS, METHODISTS OR MEMBERS OF SOME OTHER RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION WHO FOUND THE COMPASSION TO HELP THESE UNFORTUNATE INDIVIDUALS?

TO HAVE SURVIVED ALMOST A YEAR IN THAT FILTH AND DEGRADATION, CERTAINLY, BRINGS TO MY MIND THAT SOMEONE WAS HELPING THOSE PRISONERS! JUST BECAUSE THE DISCREPANCY OF THE ORGANIZATION IS IN QUESTION DOES NOT TAKE AWAY FROM THE MEAT OF THE STORY. ORAL HISTORY HANDED DOWN FROM ONE TO ANOTHER LEAVES THE DOOR OPEN TO ERRORS AND A MISTAKE COULD HAVE VERY WELL BEEN MADE BY ONE WHO HAD ONLY HEARD THE STORY, NOT THE ONE THAT WAS THERE, LIVING IT.

REGARDLESS, DO I THINK THAT SWEET POTATOES MADE THEIR WAY INTO UNION PRISONERS HANDS? ABSOLUTELY! A STORY, SUCH AS THIS, IS TOO GOOD TO HAVE BEEN ‘MADE UP’. FURTHER, WHY WOULD HE FABRICATE SUCH A TALE IF IT WERE NOT TRUE?? IN MY MIND, OLE JOHN WAS THE RECIPIENT OF A KINDNESS THAT CAN NEVER BE REPAID.

SO, IN THIS SEASON OF GIVING, MIGHT I ENCOURAGE EACH OF YOU TO ‘THROW SOMETHING IN SALLY’S POT’? THEY ARE A VERY WORTHY ORGANIZATION AND HELP UNTOLD NUMBERS OF THOSE LESS FORTUNATE. EVEN IF SALLY WAS NOT THE ONES THAT HELPED OLE JOHN, MAYBE, JUST MAYBE, YOU WILL HELP THEM HELP SOMEONE ELSE THAT NEEDS A HAND UP!

JUST TELL THEM ‘OLE JOHN’ SENT YA…..

Quality over Quantity

by Thom Van Vleck

I love being in the gym.  When I first caught the “iron bug” I’d spend hours in the Jackson Weightlifing Club gym.  While I would always be training….not all that time was working out.  I recall reading a story about Paul Anderson.  He would rest for up to 15 minutes between sets while visiting with others  …… More

GUNNER TO THE RESCUE

BY DAVE GLASGOW

I MARRIED ONE HELL OF AN ATHLETE. MY WIFE, GUNNER, WAS BORN AT A TIME WHEN WOMEN’S SPORTS WERE NOT AS PROMINENT AS THEY ARE NOW. WHAT A SHAME! I ALWAYS FELT AS THOUGH SHE COULD HAVE ‘BEEN SOMEBODY’ IN THE ATHLETIC WORLD. SHE IS FAST, COORDINATED AND HAS THAT MAGIC ELEMENT THAT YOU CAN’T TEACH OR  …… More

Heavy Lift Championships

[ May 2, 2015; 9:00 am; ]

by Eric Todd

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT
2015 USAWA HEAVY LIFT CHAMPIONSHIPS

Make plans now! The 2015 USAWA Heavy Lift Championship will be held on May 2 at ET’s House of Iron and Stone. This location is about an hour north of Kansas City right in the center of God’s Country. We will be contesting the three traditional lifts  …… More

Osteoblasters Update

by Thom Van Vleck

I’ve share information before about the lifting club I started on campus.  We continue to grow and make progress.  We hold one or two workouts every day except Sunday.  We are one the youngest, yet largest, club on campus.  We provide supervision to over 200 workouts every week!  While I am the staff adviser the growth  …… More

Florida Record Day

[ January 24, 2015; 8:00 am; ]

by Derek Prior

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT
FLORIDA RECORD DAY

Cast Iron Training is pleased to announce the first ever Florida USAWA record day on Saturday 24th January 2015 at 11 A.M. The event is open to all USAWA members.

Venue:

The Iron Cave
13680 101st Street
Fellsmere
Florida
32948

Contact: (Derek Prior) 772 766 2119

Email: castirontraining@zoho.com

New England Gold Cup

by Frank Ciavattone

The New England Gold Cup was a big success! On that particular week Jeff my son was in England! Steve Gardner would also have his team compete as well that day Nov. 29! They competed as a record breaker day as well. They had three referee’s on all lifts and lifted under the New England Gold Cup  …… More

Lifter of the Month – Denny Habecker

by Al Myers

A big CONGRATS goes to our USAWA President, Denny Habecker, for being selected as the USAWA Lifter of the Month for October.  The “big meet” in October was the IAWA Gold Cup in England, and Denny was there to represent the USA.  Denny has been a loyal lifter at Gold Cups, and can always be counted on  …… More

Dino Gym RD

[ February 15, 2015; 9:00 am; ]

by Al Myers

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT
DINO GYM RECORD DAY

Meet Director: Al Myers and the Dino Gym

Meet Date: Sunday, February 15th, 2014 10:00 AM-4:00PM

Location: Dino Gym, Abilene, Kansas

Sanction: USAWA

Entry Form: None – just show up

Entry Fee: None

Lifts: Record Day – Pick any lifts you can set a USAWA record in!

Contact  …… More

Grip Championships

[ February 14, 2015; 9:00 am; ]

by Al Myers

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT
2015 USAWA GRIP CHAMPIONSHIPS

The 2015 USAWA Grip Championships will again be held the second Saturday of February, on February 14th.  I know this is Valentine’s Day, and the Grip Champs has been held on this day before as well.  Instead of using this as an excuse not to attend, I recommend that  …… More

The Race

By Eric Todd

I remember the race very clearly. I was in the 8th grade and had been lifting weights for a spell, when a couple of my school chums became interested in the iron as well. Both were rather athletic. One was the biggest guy in our grade, the star tackle on our junior high football team. The other  …… More

Colorado Record Breaker

[ December 27, 2014; 12:00 pm; ]

by Al Myers

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT

Jarrod Fobes has sanctioned a record breaker day at his gym on December 27th.  The location of the meet is:

6441 E. Evans
Denver, CO

The meet will start at 10:30 AM.  If you plan to attend please contact Jarrod for further information on this meet.  He can be reached by cell phone or  …… More

Clarks RD

by Al Myers

MEET RESULTS

CLARK’S RECORD DAY

Bill just sent me the results from his meet last weekend.  It looks like it was a busy affair!  I’ll start with the bad news before the good.  Bill had sanctioned the Backbreaker along with a record day on this day, but he had no entries  …… More

The Smartest Man in the World!

by Thom Van Vleck

Recently I was talking to someone about lifting and why it’s a great idea to lift weights.  They seemed to struggle with the idea of lifting unless they were going to be the best at it.   Otherwise, why not find something else to do!  I enjoy weightlifting but in case you didn’t notice….I’ve yet to  …… More

Dino Gym Challenge

[ January 17, 2015; 12:00 pm; ]

by Al Myers

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT
DINO GYM CHALLENGE PRESENTS THE -

“Herman Goerner Deadlift Medley”

Every year I like to change up the theme of the Dino Gym Challenge to give it variety.   I have honored several of my favorite Old Time Strongmen in the past by hosting meets in their memory, ie Arthur Saxon and  …… More

Four Corners

by Thom Van Vleck

The Jackson Weightlifting Club has been a big part of my life.  As those who know me will already be aware it was started by my grandfather Dalton Jackson in 1928.  It was just him and some friends who were interested in weightlifting.  They never competed.  They were interested in training to get better, be stronger,  …… More

Taking 2015 Memberships

by Al Myers

It’s time to start renewing your USAWA memberships for the next year!  Memberships in the USAWA run for the calendar year – first of January to the end of December. A few have already renewed their memberships, and are listed at bottom of the membership roster under 2015 memberships.  Once January 1st rolls around, the 2014 membership  …… More

OTSM Championships

by Eric Todd

This Saturday past, ET’s House of Iron and Stone played host to the third annual “Battle in the Barn”. This year’s affair also served as the Old Time Strongman Championship for the USAWA. It turned out to be a great competition with some new lifters as well as some of the old players as well. The weather  …… More

Burton Record Session

by Al Myers

I had an absolutely great time last weekend in England at the 2014 IAWA Gold Cup, promoted by Steve Gardner of the Burton Powerhouse Gym.   I met so many great enthusiastic all rounders, and witnessed some outstanding lifting.  Plus I got to share stories with many ole friends from overseas, and be part of the largest attended  …… More

My Gyms

by Eric Todd

I expect everyone has an aptitude for something. Everyone else in my immediate family has an aptitude for art or music. About as far as my aptitude for anything artistic goes, however, is listening to songs on the radio in my truck. I always leaned more to the physical side of things. It is not that I  …… More

Gold Cup

by Steve Gardner

The Gold Cup took place at the Burton Powerhouse All Round Weightlifting Academy in Burton on Trent on Saturday 25th October. In short…it was a fantastic day! We had 56 lifters entered for the day, the biggest turnout in IAWA’s 28 year history for an International event, with 6 Nations represented (Unfortunately Kim and Graham Alway had  …… More

Art’s Birthday Bash

by John McKean

Since it’s impossible to drive to Ambridge from any direction without going through beautiful wooded hills and dense forest lands, our visitors this year were treated to this Fall’s most spectacular leaf colors, on a perfect bluebird sky day! It was almost a shame to have to go indoors to lift weights! HOWEVER, that was immediately corrected  …… More

Lifter of the Month: Frank Ciavattone

by Al Myers

Congrats goes to Frank Ciavattone for being selected as the Lifter of the Month for the month of September. Frank is definitely deserving of this award after the unbelievable contributions he made to the USAWA during the past month. Frank not only promoted the IAWA World Championships, but competed and won his 20th IAWA World Championships. He also  …… More

Update on the OTSM Championships

by Al Myers

***NEWS FLASH***

It has recently been decided that this year’s USAWA Old Time Strongman Championships will be held in conjunction with Eric Todd’s “Battle in the Barn.” Eric has promoted several OTSM competitions over the past few years, and his facility will make the perfect venue for our OTSM Championships.

If you haven’t decided to  …… More

Postal Championships

[ December 31, 2014; 12:00 pm; ]

by Al Myers

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT
2014 USAWA POSTAL CHAMPIONSHIPS

The big finale of our USAWA Postal Meet Series is upon us!

The Postal Championships will be held during the full month of December, with the entry deadline the last day of the month.  USAWA Postal Meet Director Denny Habecker has picked a good selection of lifts to  …… More

Are you feeling Slunk?

by Thom Van Vleck

Slunk [sluhngk]

Adjective

1.  Being in a temporary state where one’s mental and physical abilities are impaired by a lack of sleep achieving a similar state to being drunk.

Every year there are new words added to the dictionary. This past year words like “Crap Shoot” and “Demonizing” were added among several HUNDRED others.  While the  …… More

3rd Quarter Postal

by Al Myers

MEET RESULTS

THIRD QUARTER POSTAL MEET

MEET RESULTS:

3rd Quarter Postal Meet
September 1st – September 30th, 2014

Meet Director: Denny Habecker

Lifts: Holdout -Raised, Deadlift – Ciavattone Grip, One Arm, Continental to Belt

Officials:
Ruth Jackson – Certified Official Jarod Fobes
Crystal Diggs – Certified Official Ruth Jackson
Barry Bryan – Certified Official Denny  …… More

Gold Cup Getting Close!

by Al Myers

Well the entry deadline has “came and went” for the 2014 IAWA Gold Cup in Burton, England – hosted by Steve Gardner.  This is one of the premier competitions with the IAWA, and attending it is a prestigious occasion for all those involved.  All USAWA members should at least once attend an IAWA Gold Cup.   The USAWA  …… More

Joe Garcia Appreciation Award

by Al Myers

Another USAWA appreciation award was given to another great contributor to the USAWA.  Joe Garcia has been the USAWA Records Director/Record Keeper for the USAWA since the very beginning, and just recently stepped down from this position.  Joe’s efforts single handedly are the reason we have a very comprehensive record list in the USAWA.  We owe him eternal thanks for  …… More

John Wilmot Appreciation Award

by Al Myers

The strength of the USAWA is made up by the contributions of our membership.  One individual who has made powerful contributions to the USAWA was recently recognized by the USAWA Executive Board and the USAWA membership.  This man is John Wilmot – who spear headed the beginning of the USAWA Postal Meet Series.  John began promoting postal  …… More

New England Gold Cup

[ November 29, 2014; 7:00 am; ]

by Frank Ciavattone

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT

This meet will be the same as Art’s, a limit of 5 lifts for records.  This meet will have no entry form to fill out or need an entry.  Just an email or a call to me. The date of the meet is 11/29/2014 at the Norwood Recreational Center, 165 Nahatan St., Norwood.

E-mail: fdc2955@aol.com  …… More

IAWA Annual Meeting

by Steve Gardner

A brief run down on business at the 2014 IAWA Council Meeting…..

2014 IAWA Council Meeting – 8pm Friday 26th September – Norwood, Massachusetts USA

Members Present: Frank Ciavattone, Colleen Lane, Dave Ellis, Frank Ciavattone Jr., John Mahon, Sam Trew, George Dick, Denny Habecker, Paula Thompson, Art Montini, Steve Gardner, Chris Bass, Frank Allen, Dick Durante, Judy  …… More

World Championships

by Steve Gardner

2014 IAWA World All Round Weightlifting Championships

Norwood, Massachusetts USA September 27th and 28th

Promoter: Frank Ciavattone Snr

The 28th Annual IAWA World Championships was an outstanding success, due in no small part to the work undertaken by the promoter ‘Big Frank’ and his willing team of supporters and  …… More

All Round Mountaineering

by Thom Van Vleck

After the recent Highland Games Masters World Championships Chad Ullom joined me on a “Mountaineering” expedition.  Last time I made a pretty epic climb but this time we took it a little easier after such a tough, three day competition. It is my opinion that a true “all rounder” should be in shape to do pretty  …… More

Frank Ciavattone – IAWA Award of Merit

by Al Myers

The “second Frank” that was awarded the IAWA Presidential Award of Merit at the 2014 IAWA World Championships went to Frank Ciavattone. It was a great honor to me to be the one  that got to  make this presentation – as I’ve always looked up to Frank and have considered him a role model.  Below is my  …… More

Frank Allen – IAWA Award of Merit

by Al Myers

It was a very exciting last weekend in Boston.  One of the most important aspects of the weekend was the presentation of the IAWA Presidential Award of Merit.  This the IAWA version of the “Hall of Fame”, and only goes to individuals that are extremely worthy.  Only a handful have been presented this prestigious award, and this weekend  …… More

World Championship News Flash

by Steve Gardner

I am very proud to have been at this year’s World Championships at big Frank Ciavattones in Boston it was a great competition and the British lifters were just brilliant. In the ladies event I am so chuffed that Karen and Paula from my own club both took World titles in their weight classes and both won  …… More

Highland Games Masters 2014

by Thom Van Vleck

Recently USAWA members Dave Glasgow, Chad Ullom, and Thom Van Vleck went to Inverness, Scotland to attend the Masters World Champs of Highland Games.  Unfortunately, Dean Ross was unable to attend.  Dean was the last person to have attended EVERY SINGLE MWC since it’s inception a dozen years ago.  Larry Traub was in attendance to watch  …… More