Archive for the ‘KSO in the News’ Category

Keith St. Onge in the Aberdeen, SD News

Saturday, June 14th, 2014

I was lucky enough to have the Aberdeen News come out and take a few pictures of myself and my students while out barefoot water skiing at Mina Lake, SD.  I was doing a barefoot water ski clinic for the Aqua Addicts Show Ski Team this past week and it was a huge success!

To see the article and video click here

To see the pictures and students in the clinic click here:  Scott Schauer has been coming down to the World Barefoot Center Ski School for the past three years and it’s a pleasure to work with him on his own turf this time around.

Keith St. Onge on Mina Lake near Aberdeen, SD

Keith St. Onge makes the South Dakota News

Saturday, June 14th, 2014

I had the pleasure to go to Rapid City, South Dakota and barefoot water ski with the Mortimer and McGrath family the first week of June.  While I was there KOTATV came out and shot a bit of video.

Too see the news clip click on the link below.

KOTATV News in Rapid City, SD

Body Slide be Keith St. Onge

Barefoot Water Skiing in MEXICO!!

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

BAREFOOT WATER SKI DESTINATION – (MEXICO)

This was the first barefoot water ski destination trip ever and this is a trip you don’t want to miss in the future!!

After I did a clinic this past March in Mexico with Juan Carlos and Gustavo I knew I had to return!!  It was one of the best trips I had taken with awesome food, perfect weather and glass conditions every day…no lie!!

Our host Juan Carlos barefooting backwards

There isn’t a lot of Mexican barefooters (yet) so Juan Carlos invited me back down but asked if I could bring a few people with in order to help support the clinic.  We arranged a week in November, put a schedule of events together and organized a week of fun that included: Fly Boarding, barefooting, tourist trip to the town of Taxco, eating out and other local venues to see and explore.

I expressed to everyone that this trip would be a “relaxed barefoot clinic.”  This clinic wasn’t going to be pressed for time, we would start a bit later than usual, lunch wasn’t served till 3pm and we would enjoy the surroundings and live in the moment.  This is exactly how most Mexicans live and it was something I needed to learn and practice along with other busy businessmen.

I invited several people on this trip and the guys that decided to give it a go were Lee Stone, Don Stoppe, Glen Kinnear and Jimmy Stone.  My wife Lauren accompanied us and Juan Carlos’s wife Edith was so gracious to pick us all up from Mexico City airport.

The night or our arrival: L-R, Gus, Glen, Don, Juan, Jimmy, Keith & Lee

Here is how our schedule went:

Arrive in Mexico City on Nov. 10th, late morning or early afternoon.

Drive to Tequesquitengo on the 10th    (2 hours depending on traffic)

This trip is about the “experience, culture and relaxation.”  Nobody is in a hurry in Mexico.  Lunch is typically around 3pm, a siesta and late dinners similar to Europe.  Instruction will be from Keith St. Onge and four sets per day is not our priority, purpose or guaranteed.  This clinic will a two set or three set kind of clinic.  There will be plenty of skiing to do.  The sets may be slightly shorter or longer depending on the weather, physical ability and number of skiers.  Some days we may have seven skiers and other days we may have four or less.  I also want this trip to be fun and relaxing.  This will be a stress free and fun environment.

There will be internet/wifi available at Gustavo’s house, which will be one of the homes used for Lodging.

Nov. 11th

Wake up at 7am-ish Central Time

Eat breakfast, leave at 8am-ish (20min.) drive to site.  The ride is a great experience, seeing how people live off the land in Mexico.  Very poor area’s but amazing to witness.  Horses and donkeys are used to transport local crops.
For more info visit this link. http://www.worldbarefootcenter.com/barefootblog/barefoot-water-skiing-in-mexico

Put boat in the water and begin skiing at 9am or earlier or later.  One or two mornings we will do a Mexican style breakfast at the site.

Jimmy Stone enjoying his 1st run in Mexico

Lauren St.Onge relaxing while foot'n in Mexico

Don Stoppe foot'n with his sunglasses on.

Everyone skis two sets and we have a late lunch around 2-3pm, which is customary in Mexico

Everyone skis one set and we leave at 5pm or earlier or later.

The two homes used for lodging are on a beautiful lake that is very populated and busy.  We will not be skiing there.  The site we are skiing on will be private to us with no other motorboats. It has shorelines like our lakes in Florida.  No back wash and great for wind protection.  I can just about guarantee glassy conditions based on my first trip there.

At the end of the day Don pays the Mariachi Band to play some Mexican music for us.

Nov. 12th

Wake up at 7am or earlier and leave at 7:30 for breakfast at the lake.

Ski at 9am-ish

Lunch at 2-3pm

Leave at 5pm-ish

Pina coladas with fresh Pineapple & coconut milk (Rum optional)

Nov. 13th

Touring Day

9am – FlyBoarding

Lauren taught local Mexican lady how to water ski for the 1st time and Jimmy Stone enjoying the FlyBoarding in the back ground!

Don Stoppe getting ready for a rib shot, ouch!

Visit local Pyramids, and then drive to the city of Taxco, which is known for their Silver mining.  Silver can be found very reasonable here.  I explain this town like Greece without the ocean.  The city is built on the side of a mountain overlooking the valley below. Beautiful!

The crew visiting the local Pyramids

Mexican barefoot water skier Juan Carlos giving us the tour of the Pyramids

Nov. 14th

Wake up at 7am or early or later

Eat breakfast

Leave at 8am

Ski at 9am

Lunch 2-3pm

Leave at 5-ish

Pick up Coco’s to hydrate and visit the Estate of wealthy Cane Sugar owner.  Dinner was amazing with a beautiful atmosphere!

Awesome Dinner at the old sugar cane factory

Glen Kinnear loving the warm weather!!

Nov. 15th

Wake up at 7am

Leave at 7:30am

Eat breakfast at the lake at 8am

Ski at 9am – 9:30am

Lunch at 2-3pm

Finish at 5pm-ish

Pure glass everyday!!

Lee Stone striking a pose after enjoying a relaxing message!

Nov. 16th

Fly home early afternoon or evening

Time to head home

To say the least this trip was well organized and a compete SUCCESS!!  We plan on doing this trip again in November and possibly twice a year if we have the demand.  So, if you are interested please contact the World Barefoot Center, inquire and put your name on the list.

Private instructor: Keith St. Onge

Keith St. Onge coaching in Mexico

Thank you Gustavo for the amazing dinner on your terrace over looking the lake!!

Gustavo Barefoot water skiing backwards in Mexico

After the clinic in Tequesquitengo we said our good byes to Lee, Jim, Don and Glen.  Lauren and I along with Gustavo and his girlfriend Fernanda drove two hours South to Acapulco.  We met Juan Carlos and his wife Edith there.  The plan was to search for a barefoot paradise on one of the local lagoons.  We heard about some great places there and thought it would be a great place to host a clinic in the future.

We went up and down the coast and found many lagoons that would work out but the wind always blows off the ocean around noon.  This would hinder our plan to barefoot all day.  We then found a spot that has wakeboard boats and my next favorite thing to do on the water after barefoot water skiing is wake surfing.  It’s so fun because it’s slow pace, the falls don’t hurt, smooth water is not required and you can load the boat up with people.

My plan is to barefoot water ski in the morning, have lunch and then wake surf in the afternoon.  If this is something you want to be a part of please contact the World Barefoot Center or private message me on FaceBook.  I’m looking for four people that would be interested in this trip.

Here is one of the places we stayed at, which is only a ten minute drive from the site.

Lauren St. Onge relaxing in the infinity pool in Acapulco

Keith St. Onge taking it all in while in Acapulco Mexico

By: Keith St.Onge

My 1st Cover on the Water Skier Magazine

Thursday, May 2nd, 2013

I had no idea I was going to be on the cover.  The photographer, Zenon Bilas had a few different idea’s for me one day during a shoot.  He asked me if I could ski a few feet off the swim platform of an inboard boat?  I had barefoot skied there before but only on two feet.  He thought we could get a sweet angle while standing on the back storage of the boat while looking down on me.  I was up for the challenge and off we went.

I quickly realized I had only a few troffs to stand in while the frothy white water came roaring out from the bottom of the boat.  I had a hard time balancing on one foot.  I got knocked off my foot several times while crashing into the turbulent water.  If there’s one place I hate falling it’s directly behind the boat because the water feels like concrete.  I was able to pull off a front toe hold for a few short seconds and Zenon Bilas landed a sweet shot.

Sometimes we have to try new things to get results and in this case we did it.  I’d like to thank Zenon for being so creative and The Water Skier magazine for putting me on the cover when I needed it most in my career.  This cover rejuvenated me and kept me in the sport to want to achieve more!

Keith St Onge

1st WaterSkier cover for Keith St.Onge

By: Keith St. Onge

Keith St.Onge’s 2nd WaterSkier Magazine Cover

Thursday, April 25th, 2013

After years and years of falling short of my dream to win the World Overall Title, it finally happened in 2006.  I trained harder than ever before and it all paid off.  After returning to Winter Haven, Florida, I received a call from photographer Lynn Novakovski.  “I’d like to come out and get a cover shot.” he said.  I couldn’t wait for the opportunity, and Lynn came out the next day.

I tried to remember the covers from other athletes from years back.  I never saw or at least did not remember anybody ever wearing medals around their neck.  I thought this would be a great idea, so I brought my hardware along.

My first run was quite sketchy because my medals were swinging everywhere in the wind.  My friend Char had a hair band in the boat and suggested I tighten up the medals on my neck.  The trick worked as the medals were much tighter and did not flap in the wind.  Of course I was taking a chance if I fell, but I wanted to get a unique cover.

Keith Stonge Waterskier magazine cover shot

1st Waterskier Cover shot for Keith St. Onge after winning the 2006 World Overall Title

By: Keith St.Onge


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World Barefoot Center ski school presents, Patrick Wehner Award

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

The Water Skier magazine associated with USA Waterski has published the October issue and mentioned the award given out to Patrick Wehner.  This award is given to an athlete or someone involved in barefoot water skiing as an official etcetera.  This individual must show true “Sportsmanship” on the water and/or off the water.

The World Barefoot Center will give this award out at every World Championship with one FREE week of bare foot skiing at the WBC.  The award is named the Patrick Wehner Sportsmanship Award.

World Barefoot Center presents the Patrick Wehner Sportsmanship Award

Printed in the Oct. issue of The Water Skier magazine


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Regina Jaquess & Keith St.Onge Awarded Athletes of the Month for September

Saturday, October 6th, 2012

USA Water Ski has selected Keith St. Onge (Winter Haven, Fla.) and Regina Jaquess (Santa Rosa Beach, Fla.) as its Male Athlete of the Month and Female Athlete of the Month, respectively, for September. The U.S. Elite Water Ski Team was selected USA Water Ski’s Team of the Month. St. Onge, Jaquess and the U.S. Elite Water Ski Team are now eligible for the United States Olympic Committee’s Athlete of the Month and Team of the Month honors.

St. Onge won gold medals in Open Men’s slalom (20.2 points) and tricks (11,350 points), and the silver medal in overall (2,846.39 points) at the 18th Barefoot Water Ski World Championships, Aug. 27-Sept. 2, at the Barefoot Ski Ranch in Waco, Texas. He also contributed a team-high 2,728.02 points to the U.S. Elite Barefoot Water Ski Team’s 7,735.47-point total, leading the team to the silver medal at the biennial event.

Sept. Athlete of the Month Keith St.Onge

Jaquess won gold medals in Elite women’s slalom, jumping and overall, and the bronze medal in tricks at the 2012 Malibu Pan American Water Ski Championships, Sept. 12-15, at the Pickos World Ski Resort in Santa Rosa Beach, Fla. Her performances – including a Pan American tournament record 4-1/2 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off in slalom – helped lead the U.S. Elite Water Ski Team to the overall team gold medal at the biennial event. Jaquess also won women’s slalom titles at the 2012 Diablo Shores Pro-Am on Sept. 23 in Brentwood, Calif., and at the inaugural Soaked Orlando water sports festival on Sept. 8 in Orlando, Fla.

September Athlete of the Month, Regina Jaquess

Keith St.Onge “TIES” Ron Scarpa’s National Overall Titles

Monday, October 1st, 2012

Read about Keith St.Onge in the local news.  Just click on The Ledger link below.

www.THELEDGER.com

Breaking Ron Scarpa’s record of National Overall titles has been a dream of mine since he retired in 2005.  I had beaten Ron Scarpa at six Nationals before his retirement and I never thought the record could be broken until I received my seventh National Overall Title.  I would have to win seven more titles and I had a few tough competitors like Lane Bowers and AJ Porreca.  Lane Bowers was showing sings of retiring and his strong event was jumping, which was my weakest event and that put me in a bad position for the Overall.  I was able to hold off Lane in the 2006 Nationals but it wasn’t an easy one…”he kept me honest!”  is the least I can say.

Keith St.Onge & Lane Bowers

L-R, Keith St.Onge & Lane "Dawg" Bowers competing against each other many years prior.

AJ Porreca was a young man climbing the ladder quickly in the sport with the help of my coach Swampy and I.  He was showing signs of being the next US super star!  He was skiing so good and I was being pressured not to make one little mistake!  Otherwise, he would slide in for the Overall Title.  Granted, he still had a lot to learn but again, I was being kept honest.

AJ Porreca the 2012 Open Pro Trick Champion, left - Keith St.Onge

2010 was a breakout year for AJ and he became the forth person in history to score over 11,000 points.  He stood up incredible trick runs at the 2010 Nationals again putting pressure on me.  He came runner up to me in the tricks event.

In 2011 he again put a great score on the board.  In 2012 he skied great in choppy water conditions.  He skied about 7,500 points from what we gathered before my run.  I knew what I needed to beat him and fell about 3/4 of the way through my first pass.  Coming back I was bouncing all over and thought how in the heck am I going to beat him?  I needed at least two back to back 360’s and two 720 back to backs.  I got through my 360’s miraculously and now it was time to pray for the next two tricks.  I started my first 720 and instantly caught sideways.  I knew AJ had beaten me in tricks for the first time in his career.  I was happy for him and taking second place to him was an honor.  When he received his first place medal he got a standing ovation!

All I could concentrate on was landing a jump to secure my 13th Overall Title, which would tie Ron Scarpa.  I was able to land my first jump to secure the title but winning these titles has not been an easy task.

As my body gets older and my mind becomes wise I can’t wait to surpass the legends record of 13 Overall National Titles.  Everyone keeps asking me how many more Nationals will I be skiing in the future but all I can think about is winning one at a time for now.  One more will break the record and that’s what I’ll focus on.

By: Keith St.Onge

Finding your Passion

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

This world and our lives are all about people!!  Helping others, serving others and always believing you can do it.  I look up to many top athletes and I know many people that look up to me.  Meeting people and seeing their achievements only help our own personal growth!

Back in 2009, Judy Myers had a segment on the Today Show and the husband of Karen Putz forwarded the segment to her.  She saw this 66-year-old woman barefoot water skiing.  Karen had not barefoot skied in two decades due to losing her hearing while taking a barefoot water skiing fall.  Her family had a rare gene; if they hit their head hard on something it would cause them to lose their hearing.  Her sister tripped on a throw rug, hit her head on the floor and lost her hearing just like that, and her brother also lost some hearing from barefooting.

Karen contacted Judy Myers, and in no time was down at the World Barefoot Center ski school in Winter Haven, Florida in the spring of 2010.

Judy Myers helped Karen Putz pursue her passion for Barefoot Water Skiing

I got Karen to barefoot water ski again for the first time in twenty years.  After her second visit just two weeks later, Karen asked me, “Where do you see yourself in five years?”  I told her I would like to be a keynote speaker.  She immediately asked me if I would ever be interested in writing a book.  “Funny you ask.” I said.  I began writing a book with my cousin Matt, but we had too many other things going on and the project never took off.  After Karen went home, we continued our discussion about writing a book. “I would be interested in writing your book.” Karen said without hesitation.  We discussed it some more and decided we could do it.

Two and a half years later, we have the book nearly complete.  Just imagine the communication barrier!  My hat is off to Karen on this one.  I had to speak to an interpreter over the phone.  The interpreter would then sign what I was saying to Karen and Karen would type out what I was saying.  Wow, made for some interesting conversations to say the least, haha!

The Book, "Gliding Soles" Lessons from a Life on Water

The book should be released in September on Amazon.com   Here is a great video below on Karen, with a small plug for the book called “Gliding Soles, Lessons from a Life on Water.”  Gliding Soles Barefoot Camp was the name of my first barefoot ski school.

Visit the link below to view the video on Karen Putz & Keith St.Onge:

http://www.kwtx.com/ourtown/home/headlines/Axtell-Deaf-Barefoot-Skier-Overcomes-Adversity-165939516.html

By: Keith St.Onge

www.keithstonge.com

Please welcome “Keynote” Speaker Keith St.Onge

Thursday, July 5th, 2012

My second grade teacher Mrs. Provencher emailed me one day.  She explained the Title 1 reading program she now directs had an open house with many activities including barefoot water skiing.  They used me and barefoot water skiing as one of their topics.  I was excited to hear this and not long afterwards Mrs. Provencher asked me if I would come up and speak to the Berlin Middle School in New Hampshire, which is where I went to school also.  I had been wanting to get into speaking part time and she was giving me a perfect opportunity to do so.  I agreed and we set the date for the middle of May.

To drum up an audience Mrs. P and I hit up seventeen classrooms before lunch and I spoke to them briefly.  I basically told them how I followed my passion and became a World Champion one day.  If they have a passion they could also follow it and do what they love! I was on stage in the auditorium for an hour and signed autographs for all the kids and adults afterwards.  Thank you Mrs. P. for your support!

Mrs. Provencher (My second grade teacher) & I

We had a huge line for autographs and everyone got a free poster!

Bruce Bunnel & wife Nicole. Bruce was with me the first time I barefoot water skied.

Line for Autographs

I remember how excited I used to be waiting for an autograph so,  I give my time to the kids and make sure everyone gets one!

My two cousins Shauna & Ryleigh

My middle school Gym teacher Mr. Enman even showed up!

My first speaking engagement went great but I was a little long winded…go figure.  There were over 200 people that were present.  We had a Question & Answer at the end and gave out free games and books.

My mother organized a get together at the Mill Yard Restaurant afterwards and it was a great night hanging out with friends and family.  My next stop was Chicago for a barefoot water ski clinic.

It was a great experience for me and I look forward to speaking to many more children!  I hope I can encourage the kids I speak to find their passion in life.

For more information on Keith speaking for you contact him through, www.keithstonge.com (708) 668-2961

Keith St.Onge