GAGE Parents share your thoughts

Posted: October 19, 2010 by thetrooth in Uncategorized

Has your child attended GAGE?  Everyone has a story…WE WANT TO HEAR YOURS!

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Comments
  1. Gym Mom says:

    Lies. That is all I need to say. I hope they don’t reopen. I would advise parents to checkout other options for gymnastics. There are plenty of great gymnastic centers in the area.

    • Anonymous says:

      We are sending our son to Xtreme Gymnastics in Lee’s Summit.

      • EX-GAGE Parent says:

        I will also be sending my child to Xtreme Gymnastics. I went by to check them out today. Nice, clean, friendly staff. Drama Free is the way to be!

      • Anonymous says:

        We were there for 3 yrs. Good luck with that, we left xtreme for a reason!! Their are lies everywhere and if you would like to pay as much as you did at GAGE for very little discipline and waisted of hours of practice, then I highly recommend xtreme. There were about 7 of us that left to go to GAGE and never looked back!

    • thetrooth says:

      Listing of some gymnastics facilities close to Blue Springs: Dave’s Gymnastics, Eagles, EDGE, KC Gymnastics, Rebound Gymnastics, and Xtreme Gymnastics.

  2. GymnasticGirls says:

    If you are in the Northland, there is only one great choice — so much better than GAGE is EDGE GYMNASTICS in Liberty. That is where my girl now trains!

  3. Gym Dad says:

    Sum sing feeshee in den mok !
    Seriously, why would one need to pack up in the middle of the night and move without saying a thing. If I was renting an apartment in mid-town I would expect that sort of thing. I doubt anyone will be going back to Al Fong. Hopefully the coaches can figure something out to save the teams that have worked so hard and suddenly had the rug pulled from under them. Bad business Al ! As this website insinuates, there must be much more to the story. I would only hope , though I don’t expect, refunds are in mail.
    I would suggest, strongly suggest, that any Gage coaches willing to start their own businesses would approach the parents ASAP before it’s too late. I think they’d be surprised how much support thet would get $$. All those clients without having to start from the ground and build up. It’s just a no brainer guys.

    • Jerry says:

      I don’t think these coaches at gage should start their own business, it takes alot of money to get a business going and I think parents should now send their kids to a gym that is already established. I now send my daughter to Xtreame and they are awesome. Good people, great business and awesome coaches. Its the only way to go!!!

  4. GAGEemployee says:

    There actually are a lot of people coming back. We are now a stronger gym because of this. Sorry to say, Xtreme is owned by the same person that owned GAGE. Really, we had no choice. This was the only way we could save our business before HE took us down.

    • thetrooth says:

      Xtreme Gymnastics has no connection to GAGE except they are both gymnastic businesses.

      • GAGEemployee says:

        Yes, Xtreme is owned by the same person that owned GAGE. I know for a fact. Maybe you are someone from Xtreme.

      • thetrooth says:

        Buildings are different than businesses. Same LANDLORD different BUSINESS OWNERS.

    • LOL says:

      I agree… Just because one tenant could not pay their lease does not mean that the tenants of other buildings have the same problems.

      • Anonymous says:

        Believe me, Xtreme has absolutely 100% NO affiliation with GAGE. They were businesses in competition with each other. Different owners, different gyms, and different final outcomes….

    • Anonymous says:

      No……… Xtreme is not owned by the same person that owns GAGE. Jake owns the building but not the business. Two different situations. And the owner of xtreme pays rent in full every month on time. Jake has nothing to do with the business end of Xtreme.

    • Glad to be gone says:

      Mr Fong is a very good speaker. He knows what people want to hear and when they want to hear it. He can change the story to fit the audience and/or situation. He is very good at understanding his audience. He is not very good at taking responsibility for his own actions…… unless it makes him look good. Then he will toot his horn all day long.

      There are at least two sides to this story. Have you heard the other side of the story from someone besides Al? Do you think that it is possible that Al could, conveniently, be leaving out some pertinent information?

      • Rainydydayfun says:

        I’ve heard nothing from Jake other than what “Nurse Ann” wrote on this website. Jake won’t speak to the public or to the media, so what do we have to go on? Al’s the only one who’s brave enough to come out and speak. I don’t know Jake’s side of the story and I’m not judging him, but it feels like he’s hiding. I’d like to hear what he could say.

  5. Curious says:

    I think the person who made this website is not allowing all of the comments being made to be shown…so this may not even get to be posted!

    • gymnastics mom says:

      The building that Xtreme Gymnastics is in is owned by the same landlord that owns GAGE. The big difference is that Xtreme pays their bills on time every month!!! Al needs to get a clue and that the cities of Blue Spring, Lee’s Summit and surrounding areas owe him NOTHING!!! He is nothing but a liar and a very BAD business man.

  6. gym mom says:

    My children have been taking classes at GAGE for a long time. I love our coaches. I will absolutely follow them to the new location.

  7. Gymnasticsisno1 says:

    Eagles is better than all of them. Well established and wonderful environment. My team gymnast is going there! Al did this to himself. I don’t feel sorry for him in the least. Any parent that stays with this is not thinking clearly and is being pulled into the lies.

  8. Gym Rats Mom says:

    I’m curious what your purpose is in starting this blog. This particular post appears to have become an “advertisement” for ONE of the many places to do gymnatisc in the Lee’s Summit/Blue Springs area. I find that interesting and very possibly telling. But then after more than a decade of involvement with gymnastics, I very well may be jaded.

  9. Anon2 says:

    Obviously, Al Fong was looking after himself and not the best interests of his clientele and employees. I will be surprised if he has a gym set up in the time frame he’s stated. Who’s going to rent to him ? Who’s going to sit back and wait to see if they still have a job in 2 weeks? Who’s going to trust he won’t pull the same thing again? Maybe right in the middle of the season… or anytime. This was a very bad move. If I closed my doors for 2 weeks without warning my customers “That have PAID for a service” in advance….. No, I don’t think a comeback is in the cards for Al Fong. This will COMPLETELY destroy his reputation. Oh, sure their will be few “We Love Al Fongers” out there, but not enough to make a whit of difference. We’re going to look into other gyms if the coaches don’t come up with a plan………..quickly! I get madder every time I think about it.

  10. Mom of 3 says:

    We left GAGE and found Rebound in Blue Springs! Love it there! Coaches are amazing! Class sizes are small so the girls get a lot of attention and skills that they “learned” at GAGE are being fixed!! So happy there!!! Glad we made the change!!!

  11. Glad to be gone says:

    My daughter learned a lot at GAGE, and she is happy that she has left. After a long time of paying more than 50% higher monthly fees than any other gym in the Kansas City area PLUS the quarterly “Assessment” fee. As a parent, I am happy to be free from the fees. Our family is happy to be free from Al treating us poorly.

    Most businesses treat their customers with respect, Not Al.
    Most businesses value their customers opinions.
    Most business owners do not send out nasty messages to it’s customers about other customers…..

    HEY AL!!! YOU CAN ONLY TREAT PEOPLE LIKE CRAP FOR SO LONG!!! Then they get tired of it.

    After having so many gymnasts for so many years, why do you not get more gymnasts coming back to visit you? At holidays, during the summer?

    Is it because you treat them so poorly?
    Once they see how other places treat them with respect, they realize how much they hate you.

    I feel bad for the employees that were as suprised as the customers.
    I feel bad for the children that made GAGE their home.

    Al mentioned on the news that he was looking out for his customers????

    3 1/2 yrs ago he had a wake up call…. there were a number of stories (excuses) of why the gym was about to be sold on the courthouse steps.
    MOST “businessmen” would have taken the opportunity that was handed to him ( the bailout that allowed him to continue his “dream”) and changed some of the things that got him into the mess he was in then. If you spend all of your money and don’t look at where it is going, it will continue to go out the door!

    Insanity – Doing the same things, the same ways, but expect different results.

    • Food4thought says:

      Did you ever think about the fact that you are getting what you pay for? Sure, other gyms may have cheaper tuition, but how many of them have sent anyone to the Olympics?

      • thoughts says:

        Ok but the majority of gymnasts are not going to the olympics..if your child is congrats and by all means stay and pay the fees. However good gymnastics careers have come from other gyms around the KC area. Many kids have recieved scolarships or simply enjoyed the sport and all it has to offer without having to pay thousands of dollars.

      • seriously says:

        Yes he sent 3 girls to the Olympics, but out of how many kids who have stepped into his gym. There have been thousands over the past 30+ years. With those odds, you had to get lucky at least a few times that the right kids would walk through your doors. How many ended up hating the sport because of him? It that really worth the cost? Ask those 3 girls when he isn’t around and find out. Ivona seems to have spoken out pretty loudly!

  12. Cheer Parent says:

    As a former gage cheer parent, I’m relieved there is finally some justice in the world! Yes, our coaches were great, but not the gym owners. Mr. Fong and especially his wife made no bones about the fact that they extremely disliked cheerleading and were only in it for the money. Sadly, there are around 150 cheerleaders who have paid for all new uniforms and haven’t received them (which say GAGE by the way – how’s that going to work with a new entity name?), not to mention competition fees, class fees, etc. He says he is going to repay them for missed classes… I wouldn’t hold my breath. I think those parents who involved themselves in cleaning out that gym were schmoozed yet again by Mr. Fong, getting them to do his dirty work, and they are probably guilty of theft by helping him store that equipment that was meant to be collateral. If this was just an unfortunate business transaction and he was a victim of a slum lord, why was it all done over the weekend, no pre-planning, no phone calls, no parent meetings ahead of time, and after 3 years what was the urgency? If he really cared about the future of his students, you would tell people straight up what’s happening, not wait for people to hear it on the news. That’s just asking for people to think the worst.

    I can’t speak for the gymnastic side of things, but the cheerleaders were treated as cash cows which he now intends to “outsource” to a separate location, I assume so they never have to associate with them. My sincere hope is that the Cheer Staff takes this opportunity to create their own team and leave the Fongs behind.

  13. EX-GAGER says:

    Al is a total ASS!! This is exactly what he gets. I remember paying 3000.00 a year in “assessment” costs which were to go to equipment costs, new equipment, and coaching fees. So why is this equipment not the gyms and where did the thousands in “assessments” go. I for one would like to know. He is a professional bullshitter and damn good at it too……better at BSing then coaching. I fell for it as did many others. Don’t get me wrong my daughter learned great basics and did well on their team…..but there was a huge sacrifice in the process: my daughters mental well being and my pockets. He picked on her, called her names in front of others, would ignore her for days……..she was a living breathing robot. The day I MADE her leave was the best day of her life. She stepped into a new gym and discovered gymnastics is not all tears, pain, and dickhead coaches. This should be a wake-up call to all the parents out there still hangin on to GAGE……..AL ONLY THINKS OF AL! He will NEVER change. This is his way out…..he WILL leave all of the gymnasts high and dry. There is nothing left for him here in Missouri and it is legally unsafe for him to stay. You can’t treat little girls the way you do and not have karma come back and bite you in the ass. Al screwed himself……if he even cared a little about any of these girls he would have had something on the backburner long ago. There is WAY better gyms out there……and it’s even possible to smile in these gyms too. You are allowed to take bathroom and water breaks no matter how long the workout……hey you’re even allowed to laugh around the chalkbowl. I know for one my daughter had no clue these things even existed before she left GAGE. Sad.

  14. For gymnasts that have moved on says:

    • truth says:

      Ivana Hong is a completely different story. The only reason she became the alternate was because she never worked hard in practice anyways. Always had an attitude and didn’t listen to her coaches. It was her own fault she didn’t make it.

      • Hello?? says:

        “the only reason she was an alternate was because she didn’t work hard”?? Are you serious?? I would tend to think you would have to work pretty hard to even get close to making it into the alternate spot on the US team.

      • umm yeah! says:

        Sure she worked hard in the beginning. But when it was closer, Al and Armine pushed her harder…naturally. She thought she could do it without the help of her coaches. Pride comes before the fall.

    • Laura says:

      How can this news story even make a comment about Al being the coach of 2 girls that have died? I have heard stories of the girl with anorexia but to mention that a girl died in a train wreck?? What does that have to do with Al??

      • well says:

        The other girl didnt die in a train wreck! She died from breaking her neck while vaulting and then becoming disconected from a ventilator. The theory is the vault not safe for her to perform but he pushed her to do so anyway despite the danger many others could see.

  15. Cheer Dad says:

    We left GAGE immediately after the second building was built and our fees doubled. We moved to another team in Blue Springs.

    We are Blue Springs residents, but have noticed the same problems at both teams: the parents. It must be something in the water, but Blue Springs parents seem to think they run the programs they participate in; and that their children are elite athletes. At both programs there was incessant drama with the mothers and all they did was bitch, moan, complain and talk about everyone else and the coaches. They seemed to think they needed to be involved in every business decision made by the owners and coaches.

    We moved to another team in Lee’s Summit and the environment is completely different. We LOVE it! No DRAMA! It is refreshing when the parents are supportive of the coaches and, *gasp*, actually get along. They have realistic expectations for their children and understand that every girl cannot be a flyer or featured tumbler, and don’t complain when the coach makes them do push-ups for screwing up. Most of the parents are from Lee’s Summit or Raymore.

    I don’t harbor any ill will towards Al, but think he was probably a helluva coach but a poor businessman. It happens all the time.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I’m not going to badmouth Al, although I think he is willing to say anything at this point, but I’ll just say that we made the switch to Eagles Gym Centre and we have been sooo much happier. I mean, Eagles runs the business fairly, they really enjoy working with the girls, they have an incredible program – there are always girls in Nationals that come from Eagles – and after their remodel this summer the place looks awesome too! I feel alot more like a human being there for sure, not just a number or a money train!

  17. Parent says:

    The Fongs are stellar Coaches and produce the BEST Gymnast!!! You can’t go anywhere else in the state of Missouri to get what you pay for. Fongs are doing what everyone else is doing to survive the bad economy. You can take your child where ever you are comfortable, but they will never never never be the gymnast that Al and Armine can produce. Gymnastics is a very hard sport and allot of the gymnast parents take their kids to Eagles after they can not handle the pressure of what hard work is all about. At Eagles the coaches sit and watch instead of hands on coaching. They take your money toooo. Don’t let them fool you. Extreme Coaches are ex-Gage gymnast and coaches. They all learned gymnastics form Al and Armine. Edge Liberty is an outstanding gym for those families up north. They are great coaches that really care for your child. Of course my child goes there!!! Coaches of the Year 2010! For Cheer, Gymnastics Rocks! Move on! Have a great Day!

    • Gymnasticsisno1 says:

      Eagles coaches never sit – nor do they take your money. All GAGE gymnasts that end up at Eagles are happy that they have almost half the fees of GAGE! Coaches are amazing. Never have the DRAMA there! Eagles all the way for our family!

      • Laughing says:

        They do sit they don’t spot and the belittle the child I have seen it!!! And they do take your money. Recruits from college go there only cause the follow the kid from Gage. They know where the actual coaching came from. All gyms have drama don’t kid yourself!!! And its not half the price when you include dance recitals and costumes which they make you do!!! If this makes you happy, your in it for all the wrong reasons!

      • Gymnasticsisno1 says:

        Are you crazy??? They haven’t done dance for years!! And it is amazing coaches and great college prep gym! Do your homework!

    • oh boy its hit the fan says:

      we may have to check out extreme if there are former athletes and coaches around there it may be cheaper and very similar to the higher expectation we have come to know. i think i may check the scores from state and regionals and nationals, who knows you may have helped us find a new home!

  18. GAGE parent/Xtreme USED to be! says:

    I personally think whoever created this site needs to grow the @#$% up. Stuff happens and many make bad decisions, GET OVER IT!!! If you need to pull your child pull them. GOOD luck to all of you honestly for your childrens sake XTREME has just as many demons, lies and manipulation behind them as everyone else which is WHY WE NO LONGER go there..3 YEARS ON XTREME was 3 too many! When we left 7 other parents did too and NEVER looked back and are staying with GAGE! Many reasons I could list but I wont so those of you who see that as light at the end of the tunnel, as I said GOOD LUCK. The price is the exact same!! My child has never been happier than she is a GAGE, she agreed at the age of 8 that we have never made a better move. Even though I disagree with the last min notification of the move and the rush to get out, since then, I have been well informed by the staff! GAGE DRAGONS ALL THE WAY!!!!!!!

    • gymparent says:

      Everything people are saying about each and every one of these gyms is their own opinion! Nobody knows for sure what gym is right for their child until they try it! And i can say for sure that there have been more girls come BACK to Xtreme from other gyms because of the way they were treated at the other gyms. Again, times change, goals change and coaches change. You have to adjust to the changing times! Good luck to ALL gymnasts in the up coming meet season, REGARDLESS of what gym you are at. All these gymansts want to have fun and do well, and we as parents need to support them!

    • Anon2 says:

      The “grown up” thing to do would have been to inform the parents and have plan in place as to where and when practices would be held. And how do you know there won’t be a repeat of this 6 months from know in the middle of a season?

    • whoareyou says:

      ok who are you?? Because I definitely do not know anyone that went from Xtreme to Gage. And if you did, it must have been awhile ago because Xtreme now has new coaches.

  19. GAGEemployee says:

    You people can all have your opinions, but really you are making this a bigger deal than it really is. This isn’t life or death. We are a gymnastics company that still has a great background. Some people have called me brainwashed, but that is definately not what i am. This whole site is a joke and a disgrace.

    • Anon2 says:

      Call us NOW and tell us when and where practice is and we’ll be there. Wait 2 weeks and everyone will be GONE!

      • Upset Mommy says:

        Two weeks I was told classes were cancelled till after Thanksgiving, wow been the employees can’t get their stories straight

    • gymparent says:

      If you think this site is a joke then why do you keep coming back? And believe me, university coaches are not only looking at GAGE gymnasts. Yes they have good gymnast, but there are just as good if not better gymnasts at other clubs in the area!! GAGE is NOT the ONLY GOOD gym around and I’m so tired of everyone saying they are the best. My daughter has competed against GAGE girls before and has beaten them EVERY TIME, and that is a fact!!!! So take your GREAT AMERICAN GYMASTICS and MOVE ON!!!

    • thoughts says:

      you people??? nice really:) I believe you person also seem to have your own opinion, odd isnt that different people will see things differently.

    • thoughts says:

      GAGEemployee…I am going to go out on a limb here and guess you have no kids. You see everything that affects the lives of our children IS a big deal. The time, money and effort put into this facility by gymnast and families alike make it a VERY big deal to many people. On one hand you talk about what a strong family GAGE is but then you flip it and say its not such a big deal…well you cant have it both ways.

      • Gym Rats Mom says:

        It is a sport. It shouldn’t be the center of your life. I’m a mother of two. Good heavens.

      • GAGE parent2 says:

        @gym rat, I agree it should not be the center of your life. However, to say it is not that important is incorrect. It affects our children, it affects our families and to say otherwise is just untrue. Many of us have put in our time and money and our children have also. They believed in and trusted this system and the man who ran it, as did we the parents. So many people are just searching for answers. GAGE has never been forthcoming with where the money was going and look what has happened so trusting is difficult at a time like this.

      • Gym Rats Mom says:

        It’s a teachable moment. Stuff happens that we can’t control. We mourn and move on. Or we don’t and get stuck in bitterness.

    • longmemory says:

      “A great background.” Are you serious?!?

  20. P's mom says:

    I went to GAGE when I was younger, and my daughter has went there too. I was disappointed in the class and how the kid’s who did better were treated. I’m not saying my daughter was the best, she wasn’t…but to see how the staff handled the other kids who weren’t top was sad. (Keep in mind, I’m talking about 4 and 5 year olds!!) I think that there were problems starting to set in, but I’m still shocked at what happened. It’s sad to see a business that I grew up with close like this, but it sounds like it was a long time coming. Fortunately, there are several other great facilities in the area for the gymnists to grow in.

  21. Bizman says:

    I was a former gym owner, biz consultant to Al, former coach at GAGE, and parent of three GAGE gymnasts at GAGE, and intimately know the business as well as the coaching staff. GAGE is a phenomenal organization with excellent coaches. To attempt to slander an organization without adequate information is simply reckless. Yes, there were numerous biz and coaching decisions that were not well thought out and resulted in considerable negative outcomes, but every company and gym is going to experience good times and bad times. I think all who have commented must consider their motives and reflect on them. The fact that this issue has become a public spectacle is a poor demonstration of those that lack the ability to focus on constructive thoughts or suggestions. Although, I understand this is an open forum and respect those rights I believe those that cannot get past the negativity simply need to take their own advice and MOVE ON. Al knows his shortcomings and will be dealing with them every waking moment. Those that have never failed or made a mistake feel free to continue publicly demonstrating what a poor role model really looks like.

    • GYM COACH says:

      I am a gym coach, and would like to say every child has a place in whatever gym they feel comfortable in. folks lets keep your children in mind and not make this a big “al bash”.take your child to other gyms and have them try something new. You might be surprised that they can be happy there too. I know for a fact that there are other coaches out there that can teach big skills and help your child succed at their goals in this sport. I do not coach at gage but have respect for what AL has accomplished with some of his kids. and to all you gyms out there this page should not be your personal yellow pages ad.

    • thank you says:

      THANK YOU!!!! Glad to see that somebody is being sensible

  22. bgsugymnast says:

    Al and Armine are elite caliber coaches. Enough said. They coached me to a full-ride scholarship. Parents and coaches can talk them down all they want but their coaching shows visible results in their gymnasts. Parents, if your kids can’t take the heat or aren’t tough enough to become a high caliber gymnast, then take them to another gym. It’s that easy. Will your child ever go farther than doing gymnastics through their high school careers? NOPE. I wish GAGE the best of luck in their move and hope that they will continue to produce successful gymnasts in the future.

    • thoughts says:

      Thats very rude! If your gymnast cant handle it?! Your air of supperiority is awefull! Other kids have recieved scholarships and have continued on in college from all over the KC area. You should not say such negative things like, if your kids arent tough enough take them to another gym. I am so glad it was a great place for you but just because it isnt for other CHILDREN does not make them lesser or you better as your attitude would express.

  23. TBG says:

    We were warned by a college gymnastics coach to stay away from GAGE when we moved here a couple years ago so I don’t have much first hand knowledge of them.

    We weren’t overly impressed with Extreme either. A couple of the coaches are verbally abusive to the girls and we don’t tolerate that. Also the only thing the bars coach there knows about gymnastics is that his girlfriend is the head coach. I don’t think he had ever been in a gym until he started dating the coach, but with new talent on the market, I expect an upgrade will forthcoming.

    My advice is to try two or three places before making a decision. Don’t let the fact that the meet season is fast approaching persuade you into making a rash decision.

  24. makesmesad says:

    Ok.. so my heart is sad for these girls especially for the competitive cheer teams. These girls have a comp in 2 weeks. Where are they to practice? What uniforms will they wear? What a sad unfortunate image to put in their heads 😦 I hope someone has their best interests at heart and makes sure they get something out what they have worked so hard to build. Lets not forget who this is really about here. OUR KIDS! Might I suggest Edge/TC in Riverside for cheer or gymnastics. My child goes there and does both >FANTASTIC coaches and wonderful atmosphere

  25. GageCheerMom says:

    I would like to say a BIG thank you to all of our Gage Cheer Coaches they are simply the best! They have worked very hard to make sure that our practices have continued without interruption! My daughter has been at Gage for four wonderful years, and we could not be happier with the program. They always looked out for our girls and they continued to do just that. Gage Cheer is here to stay!

  26. Kim says:

    I am Eagles Gym owner Kim. I was shown this site and started to read some of the entries and was amazed at the way people are trash talking all the other gyms in the area. I know there are many great gymnastic programs in the area and there is no reason to bring them down just because GAGE is having problems. Al and his staff have been around a long time and I am sure that his members loved that gym. We as a gymnastics community should hot bad mouth any other gyms but only try to run the best program for our gyms. I know that the gyms mentioned in this blog Edge, Xtreme, Rebound and Eagles along with many other great gyms make up a wonderful and talented gymnastics community in KC and the surrounding area’s. I am sorry for what has happened to GAGE but if the parents decide that it is time for a change, looking at several gyms to see which one fits your needs is essential. The untrue comments being posted about our gym and others is just not neccessary. I hope the best for everyone involved in the unfortunate situation with GAGE.

    • Anonymous says:

      I dont think it is just GAGE families that are on this blog “bad mouthing” other gyms. This whole site was set up to “bad mouth GAGE”. Your post should have stated that as well. The situation is unfortunate and everyone, all gyms included have people that have left unhappy and gone elsewhere. Lets not forgot. Every gymnast needs to find the program that best fits his/her needs wether that be GAGE, Xtreme, Eagles etc.

  27. Anonymous says:

    I Agree completely!!! My daughter has been there for 3 and absolutely loves it!!! GO GAGE!!

    • Anonymous says:

      There are other gyms that are using this situation as a previous post said as a yellow pages ad. If you are not a member of GAGE as part of the cheer, rec, gymnastics, boys team program etc. there is no reason to be posting these hateful mean comments. This does not effect you in any way. If your child is happy at another program, why waste your time bashing a gym you no longer attend?

  28. Another mom says:

    The only thing I am going to say is that the Fongs are great with their gymnasts. My daughter has being part of the dragon team for four years and she LOVEs every part of it. Everyone at GAGE has being good with us…they are very patient.There are times that we are not able to pay for months and they wait for us. They provide good quality gymnastics to my daughter. We will follow them and support them in whatever we can!
    Another thing to remember is that not every gymnast has what it takes in such as difficult sport.

  29. stan says:

    I am a GAGE Parent. I was told that the Missouri State Committee has taken away the Level 4 State Meet in December and the Level 4 Qualifier in February that GAGE was hosting. I can only assume that Al did not convince them that he had a “for sure” location for these meets. I have been waiting, patiently, to find out where GAGE is moving to. I would like GAGE to address this issue immediately, so I can make an informed decision about what to do with my daughter. Thank you.

    • Anonymous says:

      I was told this today as well from another gym and am also a level 4 parent. We can’t make the meeting tonight but I hope someone will let us know what goes on. At this point, I just don’t know if we are willing to put up with all the uncertainty that surrounds all of this.

      • mommy says:

        I was not able to attend the meeting tonight.
        I hope someone will post notes from the meeting and ,hopefully,
        we will get some answers. Good Luck Parents, we have been through enough!

  30. Anonymous says:

    GAGE is in the new cheer bldg this morning already..here’s the info I received for cheer!!…
    Gage Cheer We have a cheer gym!!! We will be located on 40 high way in Blue Springs just past Woods Chapel Rd. (going West – next to Direct TV and the New Hope Church). We will get our electricity on this morning

  31. Anonymous says:

    Gage Cheer We have a cheer gym!!! We will be located on 40 high way in Blue Springs just past Woods Chapel Rd. (going West – next to Direct TV and the New Hope Church). We will get our electricity on this morning Gage Cheer We have a cheer gym!!! We will be located on 40 high way in Blue Springs just past Woods Chapel Rd. (going West – next to Direct TV and the New Hope Church). We will get our electricity on this morning

    • oh boy its hit the fan says:

      and to think the cheer girls were shoved to the back of the gym! go cheer, at least you have a place!

    • confused says:

      Now that the cheer program has their own building, are they still under the GAGE Business.? Or have they succeeded from GAGE to start their own business?

  32. Diana Luppens says:

    I am AMAZED at how all these comments are aimed at innocent people. GAGE does have a GOOD program…..my daughter went there for 5 years… we moved on because the program didn’t match our needs at the time…we are happy with our move to Xtreme and wish ALL the gymnasts well in their seasons, no matter WHERE they practice… the main thing is that each gymnast is happy wherever they practice and that they are able to practice in a positive environment and enjoy what they do….. they ALL work hard….the coaches at EVERY gym are dedicated to their girls and their TEAMS… My daughter learned a LOT from GAGE…. she is ALSO learning ALOT at Xtreme… ALL the coaches have the potential to make a positive impact on our gymnasts. It is unfortunate that GAGE is having to deal with the issues at hand…. the bottom line is that the girls need a place to practice a sport that they LOVE…..We as parents have to support whatever decision we make as a family….this is an ENTIRE family sacrifice that we make to support our girls love of GYMNASTICS….I am also amazed at how such AWFUL things are said about other coaches and gyms and YET these comments are made by Anonymous people….. OWN your words and stand behind them….that is the BEST example we can give our girls in any situation… Don’t lash out at people anonymously… EVERY gym, EVERY coach, EVERY situation in life has positives and negatives……we all make the BEST decision that we can for our girls and our families with the information that we have at that time. We ALL make mistakes and we all have choices….it is what you learn and how you react that truly matter in the moment….GAGE has some talented young athletes and so do ALL the other gyms…..Thanks to all those who give their time and energy and resources to support these athletes…I hope they find a HOME soon, wherever that may be and get back to the sport that they LOVE….Like I tell my kids all the time….The situations we face in life, we must learn from and those situations are what make us stronger and better in the end…..

  33. anotherpissedoffparent says:

    “Apparently” they are setting up a gym in Blue Springs for cheer and a few younger kids groups, baby dragons, etc.. Also, apparently, USAG teams have a place to practice, but not a new gym. The AAU silver dragon teams, maybe, just might, if any show up, can practice on Sundays only…. an hour drive out of town . no surprise there…if a gymnast is not “Olympic Material”, to the Fongs, they don’t exist. And I’m not “bashing” this is just a blatant fact that only a blind person wouldn’t spot. Nothing wrong with fame and fortune seekers !… There is an ongoing dispute over the equipment taken from the building. All GAGE meets canceled, not a good sign. Who knows where this will all go !

    • Anonymous says:

      They have already signed a lease and our setting up the new location in Blue Springs. They are still in the process of finding a team location, but they are currently practicing 45 minutes away too, so none of them must be “olympic material”. The Fongs did not decide when and where the Silver Dragons would practice… that would be up to the coach! Get the facts first befor you post!

      • confused says:

        a new location for Gymnastics?
        If they have signed the lease, why don’t they tell us and let us know where it is and when it will open?

      • GAGEemployee says:

        This is true. ^^ Please don’t start rumors.

      • Anonymous says:

        They haven’t let you know when it will open because they’re probably not certain themselves. They have a lot of work to do to the building to make it ready.

        They may not have told you WHERE because they may not want a bunch of people in the way while they’re doing all the work. There are nails, boards, chainsaws, ladders, and all manner of things being used, ripped up, torn down, and thrown out and the last thing they need is an injury because someone was where they shoulnd’t be.

      • JustaNote says:

        Anonymous….You should THINK before you post. The coaches ARE NOT making the decision where to practice. They’ve only had the responsibility dumped on them to FIND the least expensive place to suit the man with the checkbook. Come on…… Al admited he removed property that didn’t belong to him….so they could sort it out ??? Come ON….. The gym owner, Al Fong, doesn’t know whats his, what’s rented and what belongs with the building??? That’s like saying I’m going to take everything out of my furnished apartment until the owner can prove what’s his. There is much more to this story than we’re being told. Notice he didn’t answer any questions on his own. It’s a matter of deniabilty! When the legal battle gets going that equipment is going to seized, then what do we do? Just go on waiting for Al to correct yet another mistake?

  34. Anonymous says:

    Yes, it is on the GAGE facebook page.

    We have our first new location out of the two! This location is on West 40 Highway in Blue Springs. This location is where our recreational, preschool, parent tot, cheer, and some boys team will be held! We will be getting in touch with all of our customers very soon to let you know specifics and answer any questions you might have!

    The address is : 3713 W 40 Highway Blue Springs, MO

  35. Who's at fault says:

    Don’t forget to fwd 51% of the dues.

  36. Nurse Ann says:

    I am a long-time acquaintance of Jake Tonsfeldt and ran into him at a function last night and when I mentioned the GAGE gym situation that I had been hearing about in the media and he explained some things to me that I am sure the public does not know. In the first place, the rent that Al Fong says is too high was based on what Jake had to borrow to pay off all Al’s outstanding bills and a bank note which he was ready to be foreclosed on in 2007. Jake agreed to put up large sums of his own money and to sign for a bank loan that would take care of Al’s problems. The rent rate was set to allow the payments to be made on the new bank loan and to pay Jake back over the 10 years of the lease he is now walking out of. Yea, the lease rate may have be higher than the market rate but the reason for this is this was Al’s agreement within the lease to pay these monies back. Jake is still hung out with these banks for the total amount they borrowed and now Al thinks just because the market rates dropped he doesn’t have to pay. Al has really skipped out on his obligations here and left Jake holding the bag. Jake Tonsfeldt owns several properties around town and leases one to a major hospital that I work for and they are very happy with him. To see him made out to be a mean, vindictive landlord makes my blood boil.

    Jake said at best, he had a one week notice that there was a problem. He tried to talk to Al and Al refused to talk to him. Jake finally got a copy of a letter that went to his lender demanding that the lender force Jake to lower the rent to an amount that would make his loan to the bank outside the FDIC guidelines for a performing loan. And then he wanted Jake to release all the collateral on the agreements that saved him in 2007. The next thing Jake knew was that the equipment was being removed from the building. The parents that helped remove the equipment from the gyms last weekend do not know the whole story and that equipment was used under a security agreement with UCC1 filings and now belongs to the bank. That includes the specialized floors and everything. You folks should bring this back or it will just be pulled out of the new gym when it shows up there.

    I attended your big meet last year with Jake and some friends and Jake was so proud to part of this program and we all saw how much the athletes enjoyed what they were doing. Jake is really upset about the grief this has caused the students and parents who really know nothing of the business dealings. He understands their loyalties to Al Fong but they need to know the other side of the story. Jake’s attorneys have advised him to let everything work out in the courts. But as we know the courts are so slow and I think the students and parents need to hear his side of the story now. He thought it would be wonderful for a parents group to be the operator of the gym and said he would gladly let them use the equipment. The rent for such a group would be lower than current rent because they would not be paying back Al’s debt. Parents is that possible?

    • confused says:

      What an “eye-opener”! Thanks for sharing!
      Tell Jake we are pulling for him. We sure appreciate the kindness he has given to all the athletes and feel very sorry that Al has put him in such a situation.

  37. Anonymous says:

    Its amazing to me that someone can care so much to start a blog about this while a coach accused of molestation still owns and coaches at a local gym in Grain Valley. Maybe we should start a blog about that?

  38. OUTRAGED says:

    Some people just LOVE to stir the pot….GROW up and stop trying to BASH everyone and everything…..Stop deflecting the focus onto everything EXCEPT the REAL issue at hand……Al Fong is a HORRIBLE business man apparently…. he thinks he can NOT pay bills and just walk away from his obligations and contracts…..Absolutely NO accountability…BUT the people who keep trying to drag other gyms and coaches into this mess and throw them under the bus are REALLY no better…..Sinking to LOW levels and trying to deflect the real issues is cowardly. You ALL should be ashamed of yourselves….think about all the GAGE employees that have lost their jobs… think about all the Cheerleaders, preschoolers, boys team as well as the girls competitive team….there are so many victims here and those are the people who should be upset…not all you idiots who have displaced anger and try to drag others down with you…. Grow up!!!!

    • Gym Rats Mom says:

      Outraged – you appear to be trying to stir the pot yourself. If that wasn’t your intention then you would have ended your post at “GROW up and stop trying to BASH everyone and everything”. Instead you ended up in the same mud as the people you were critizing.

  39. longmemory says:

    How many of the parents here even know the names Julissa Gomez and Christy Henrich??

    I’m not being sarcastic, I am truly curious.

  40. google says:

    While Henrich was succeeding in gymnastics, her health was beginning to suffer from an eating disorder. In 1989, a judge at an international meet told her bluntly that she was fat and needed to lose weight. Apparently, Henrich took the comment to heart. Her drive to lose a few pounds progressed to unhealthy eating habits and, eventually, full-blown anorexia nervosa.[3][4] The eating disorder was fueled further by the culture of elite gymnastics—which, in the late 80s and early 90s was ruled by “pixies”, ie, small, underweight, prepubescent girls—and Henrich’s own coaches, who allegedly made insulting remarks about her size and body type. At first, neither her family nor her coaches were aware of the situation.[5] Her coach was Al Fong, who also coached Julissa Gomez, another gymnast who died, although not from anorexia.

  41. google says:

    Gomez qualified for the vault finals at the 1988 World Sports Fair, but observers had noticed her struggle with the apparatus over the months leading up to the competition, including her former coach Béla Károlyi, past and present teammates, and even her present coach Al Fong. Gomez’s technique on the extremely difficult Yurchenko vault had been described as shaky at best, and Gomez was unable to perform the vault with any consistency during practices, sometimes missing her feet on the springboard[5]. A teammate from Károlyi’s, Chelle Stack, later stated, “You could tell it was not a safe vault for her to be doing. Someone along the way should have stopped her.”[5] However, Julissa’s coaches insisted that she needed to continue training and competing the Yurchenko vault in order to achieve high scores.[5]

    During warmups for the final, Gomez continued to practice the Yurchenko. During one approach, her foot slipped off the springboard, and her head hit the vaulting horse at high speed. The resulting crash paralyzed her from the neck down.[6] A subsequent accident at a Japanese hospital, in which she became disconnected from her ventilator,[5] resulted in severe brain damage and left her in a catatonic state. Gomez’s family cared for her for three years before she succumbed to an infection and died in August 1991 in Houston, just three months shy of her nineteenth birthday.[1]

  42. Who's at fault says:

    Both sad stories.

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