Monday , 14 June 2021
14 year old Chaya Koluk (right), 13 year old Rhianna Poltorak (left). Alberta Winter Games this weekend in Airdie, representing Zone 7.

Two Bonnyville gymnasts competing at Alberta Winter Games

13-year-old Rhianna Poltorak, left, and 14-year-old Chaya Koluk, right. 

Two Bonnyville gymnasts are competing on the Provincial stage this weekend.

Chaya Koluk and Rhianna Poltorak are representing Zone 7 at Alberta Winter Games in Airdrie.

It’s Poltorak’s second time going to compete – two years ago she had the opportunity at 11 years old.

“I got two bronze medals, a silver medal and two ribbons,” she said in order to qualify.

Meanwhile, Koluk earned two gold, one silver, and two bronze medals to qualify for Winter Games.

Combined they’ve been at Ashlin Gymnastics Club for 13 years and they’ll team up with fellow gymnasts from Fort McMurray to represent the northeast part of Alberta.

“Maybe [we’ll] work together with them and make some new friends,” said Koluk.

Watch the live interview and bars demonstration

Kirby Palkovic at Ashlin Gymnastics has been coaching for 14 years and says it’s a boost to send girls to big competitions like this.

“I think the biggest thing is that it drives the energy for the other girls. They see we can go somewhere where the big cities are going and it makes it a little more exciting,” she said.

She says it’s one of the biggest competitions of the year along with Provincials.

“They’ll be seeing the best we have in Alberta…the top four for every zone is pretty competitive, especially in Calgary and Edmonton so all the girls they’re usually against, but in the top tier.

“It’s all based on score. They get scored out of 10 for all four of their events and then they add it together and make an all-around score.”

Twenty kids are in Ashlin’s competitive program.

The Alberta Winter Games are happening Feb. 14-17.

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.