Monday, July 02, 2012
This is a big week for US gymnastics -- the 2012 U.S. Olympic Gymnastics trials were held in San Jose this weekend, and we finally have a 2012 US Olympic Gymnastics team! With all the excitement surrounding one of America's favorite Olympic sports, the timing couldn't be better to introduce a girl who has some Olympic dreams of her own: McKenna Brooks. Actually, millions of girls around the country already know McKenna, because she's American Girl's 2012 Girl of the Year. Her movie, McKenna Shoots for the Stars, debuts tomorrow, June 2, on Blu-Ray and DVD. The Pea owns a McKenna doll, so she was so happy when American Girl sent us an advance copy of McKenna's movie to review, as well as supplies to host a McKenna viewing party!
American Girl holiday party last December, so they were happy to dress up and socialize!). Each girl got a cute American Girl rubber bracelet and a McKenna activity sheet.
American Girl partyware and crafts to liven things up, so the girls started out by making craft boxes and cards. Once they had glued and glittered to their satisfaction, we watched the McKenna movie. After that, we all took a deep breath, had some muffins and fruit on cute American Girl party plates, then watched the US Gymnastics Olympics trials and cheered on Gabby Douglas as she won the all-around competition and made the team! What an exciting, inspiring afternoon!
So what did we think of the movie? All the girls loved it! The movie is based on the 2 McKenna books, McKenna and McKenna, Ready to Fly, so they all knew the story, but I think that seeing it performed by real girls on screen really brought home the challenges that all girls face: being ashamed to ask for help, getting into fights with friends, dealing with frustration and disappointment, facing up to your fears. The girls did say there was far too much hugging and kissing than you would normally see between real girls in real life, but they all agreed that it was a good movie. I even caught The Pea with tears in her eyes :)
As a parent, I would definitely recommend McKenna Shoots for the Stars. The gymnastics sequences are really entertaining-- advanced enough for viewers to Oooh and Ahh, but not so advanced to make them skeptical that McKenna, who is supposed to be a typical 4th grader, would be able to do them. The movie has some really good messages: finding balance between schoolwork and extracurriculars, between old friends and new. Having read Little Girls in Pretty Boxes decades ago, I'm well aware of the dark side of women's elite gymnastics, and I'm glad that the movie emphasizes that gymnastics is supposed to be fun, to take things one step at a time, and enjoy the sport no matter what level you're in. It's a great movie for little girls with big dreams!
Win a McKenna Movie Prize Pack
I have an extra copy of the movie, and one of The Pea's friends couldn't make it to the party, so I'm giving some of our party goodies to one lucky Bonggamom Finds reader! The winner of this giveaway will receive:
* 2 McKenna activity sheets
* 2 McKenna bracelets
* 1 McKenna Shoots for the Stars Blu-Ray DVD
Leave a comment on this post and tell me which character in the McKenna movie inspires your daughter (or which character is your favorite). This entry must be completed before any extra entries will count.
For extra entries, you can do any or all of the following. Please leave a separate comment for each extra entry with a way to verify the entry (i.e. tweet link, blog post link, Facebook id, Twitter id, etc.).
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4) Repin any of the pins on my American Girl crafts Pinterest pinboard (1 entry for each repin, max 5 repins/entries).
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I entered the McKenna movie giveaway! http://bit.ly/OXeOvd
7) Write this on the American Girl Facebook page (1 entry):
I entered to win a copy of the new McKenna movie on Bonggamom Finds! Giveaway ends July 30 at http://bit.ly/OXeOvd
8) Share the my Facebook posting about the giveaway on your own Facebook page (1 entry). Here is the link to share:
9) Follow @bonggafinds on Twitter and tweet this (1 entry per day):
RT @bonggafinds Win a copy of the new American Girl McKenna movie! Enter by 7/30 at http://bit.ly/OXeOvd #giveaway
10) Enter any open giveaway on Bonggamom Finds (1 entry for each giveaway you've joined)
This giveaway ends at 11:59PM PST on July30, 2012; I will draw a winner at random on July 31 and post his/her name after she/he confirms acceptance. Continental US residents only. For additional giveaway rules, click here. Good luck!
Disclosure: I received 2 complimentary copies of the DVD plus activity sheets and a gift card to purchase party supplies and crafts. The views and opinions expressed here are my own.