Shawn Johnson Day

Mary Lou Retton got a Wheaties box.

Carly Patterson got a Wheaties box, the talk show circuit and a fledgling singing career.

Shawn Johnson doesn’t have the Wheaties box yet, but she’s doing the talk show circuit and she’s already got something neither Olympic champions Retton nor Patterson did: A day.

Iowa governor Chet Culver will personally welcome the newly crowned world all-around champ to the Iowa State Historical Building Oct. 17 for what the Des Moines Register calls “Shawn Johnson Day.”

Forget day. 2007 has clearly been Shawn Johnson year. She’s been American Cup Champion, American Classic Champion, Pan American Games Champion, U.S. National Champion, World All-Around Champion, World Floor Champion, all within the span of about seven months. 

It’s worth noting that Johsnon only lost one meet as a junior in 2006 as well.

2007 World All-Around Champion Shawn Johnson performing the floor routine the solidified her title.

With all the positive energy swirling around her, one has to wonder what’s in store for the 15-year-old dynamo in 2008. When Kim Zmeskal became the first American woman to win a world all-around title in 1991, there were few media appearances and those focused on what the Olympic year would bring.

To paraphrase a Sports Illustrated article written four years later, after the 1991 Worlds in Indianapolis, the doors of Karolyi’s gym were open and herds of reporters were asking, “How many golds will you get in Barcelona?”

How things have changed in a decade and a half. Everyone’s so stoked about Johnson’s win in Stuttgart that Beijing still seems very far off. Johnson’s also been featured on ABC News as Person of the Week, and she just did a spot on Ellen Degeneres’ daytime show. Nobody’s really talking about Beijing, and when they do, it’s about whether or not she’ll make the team, not how many medals she’s worth.

That’s as it should be. Charmed as her life may seem, Johnson’s going to be under pressure like she’s never known next summer. She should get the opportunity to savor her latest triumph without having to focus on the unknown future.

Johnson on Ellen:

And as ABC News’s Person of the Week:

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2 Responses to “Shawn Johnson Day”

  1. FireDannyAinge Says:

    Kim Zmeskal actually was on Aresenio Hall which was big back then. Shannon Miller is the gymnast that has been royally you know what when it comes to talk shows. Also the Mag 7 had a Wheaties box . Also after Shannon Miller won 5 medals in 92 she had her own day in Oklahoma. Carly’s Texas is too big a sports town to give her a day.

  2. Rootserver Says:

    Windows Server…

    Shawn Johnson Day « The Gymblog…

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