West Hartford resident Ryan Radmanovich, a Canadian Olympian, celebrated his new U.S. citizenship at the 2-4-1 Sports camp where is working this summer.
Submitted by Abby Moore
Wearing red, white, and blue, campers at the 2-4-1 Sports camp celebrated the nation’s birthday early, on July 1, with newly-minted U.S. citizen Ryan Radmanovich, a two-time Canadian Olympian, former Major League Baseball player, and for a fortunate, two-week stint this summer, the co-baseball director at their camp on the Kingswood Oxford campus.
Founded by former Division 1 college athletes and area coaches Steve and Kerry Boyle of West Hartford, the 2-4-1 Sports Camp offers children the opportunity to experience multiple sports under the guidance of elite athletes, now coaches. The camp’s philosophy is captured in its catchy tagline of Life’s 2-Short-4-Just-1 Sport – a response to the trend of young children specializing in a single sport, raising their risk for injury and burn out. Recently, 2-4-1 has been in the national spotlight as a model of how to help kids become physically literate – the ability, confidence, and desire to be physically active for life.
Radmanovich played for the Canadian baseball team in the 2004 and 2008 Olympics and the Seattle Mariners in 1998. Now retired from competitive sports, the West Hartford resident is a hockey and baseball coach at Kingswood-Oxford.
Earlier in the day, Radmanovich was sworn in as U.S. citizen in Hartford. When “Rad” returned to the camp on the Kingswood Oxford campus, staffers and campers cheered and clapped in a surprise celebration. Standing against the backdrop of a giant-size American flag and bright blue skies, “Rad” beamed as campers danced to Miley Cyrus’s “Party in the USA,” sang the National Anthem, and then dined on frozen treats, donated by G-Form.
Celebrating his citizenship at a camp that encourages children to play multiple sports resonated with Radmanovich.
“I want the kids to know that sports actually brought me to this country, he said. “ I wanted to play professional hockey, but baseball proved to be my sport and because of it, I’ve spent half of my life here so far and now I’m a citizen.”
The Boyles were happy to arrange the party. “To celebrate this with Rad on Canada Day was an honor in so many ways,” said Steve Boyle. “There’s great karma in it really as it was our friends from Canadian Sport 4 Life that presented the concept of physical literacy to us for the first time. Ryan personifies Physical Literacy on a number of levels. Kerry and I are so happy to have him here at camp, but more importantly, we’re blessed to call him our friend.”