It isn’t often you get to see someone who is the best in the world at what they do and especially not this close to home.

The public will have the opportunity to do just that Saturday in Barker Common when Olympic Gold Medalist Jenn Suhr participates in a pole vaulting competition.

Jenn’s coach and husband Rick Suhr explained this event is the first part of the three-stop tour.

“This is a phenomenal opportunity. This stop in Fredonia is the first of three stops on the tour with other stops in Rochester and at the Bills-New England Patriots game,” he said.

The event is free and open to the public and will begin at 5 p.m. Jenn will jump against local pole vaulters from the Buffalo and Rochester areas. Following the competition Jenn will autograph posters for fans.

Rick said Jenn wanted to jump in Fredonia to give her home town a chance to see her first hand.

“It is not often you get to see somebody who is the best in the world perform. If you were to go to the Olympics in London it would have cost you $13,000 to $15,000. The main reason we wanted to do this is because it enables everybody in the Chautauqua County area to see Jenn jump. That is the main reason Jenn wanted to it in Barker Common,” he said.

“I am really excited about the event. It isn’t often that you get to put on a show for the people who have supported you all this time. I wanted it to be a thank you for my supporters and to show off the gold medal and show people what pole vaulting is and maybe inspire someone to take up the sport,” Jenn said.

Rick explained Jenn will be going for the world lead trying to top the highest height jumped this year of 15 feet 10 inches (4.82 meters) by Silke Spiegelburg of Germany.

“This is a sanctioned competition and Jenn will be jumping against the five best pole vaulters in the Buffalo and Rochester areas and will be trying to go for a record. She is literally 1-centimeter away from the world record and what better place to do it than Fredonia? … Jenn has never jumped in Chautauqua County and it is a once in a lifetime opportunity and all you need to bring is a lawn chair,” he added.

The Fredonia Olympic Celebration committee is urging residents to put their Jenn Suhr signs back in their yards to show support for the event. In a press release, the group said it “would be delighted if the residents of our area would place the yard signs back in their yards for the week in honor of her homecoming.”

by: Nicole Gugino


Jenn Suhr
Jenn Suhr

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