Nick Baumgartner, gold medalist in the Team Snowboard Cross event, is in Detroit for America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Gardner White. He joined Michelle Oliver and Meredith Bruckner on “Live in the D” to discuss his accomplishments, and tomorrow’s holiday celebration.
According to Baumgartner, he is looking forward to being surrounded by amazing people and celebrities.
“It’s just an honor to be asked to come and be a part of this, and then you see these other celebrities in there and for me, Tony Hawk is someone I’ve looked up to for a very long time, and I remember his movies back in the 80s, and just to be in the same presence as people like that is pretty cool,” he said.
Baumgartner said he’s accomplished so much by working hard and not making excuses, and he hopes to inspire other people from small towns to do the same.
“To me, it’s just not believing the excuses that I’m from too small of a town,” he said. “I don’t come from the monetary background to be able to chase this dream. I had to find a way to make it work; and when you’re trying to do something and you’re trying to work for something big, there’s always that saying that it’s you that stops you. If you believe those excuses, and I wasn’t going to let that happen.”
According to Baumgartner, it took a mix of work ethic and passion to win a gold medal.
“Luckily, I have the Midwest work ethic that you get here in Michigan, and that’s all it took. And, then a little bit of a dream, and a little bit of a passion from being from a small ski hill in my hometown,” Baumgartner said. “It’s a very small ski hill compared to the mountains I go to, but I wasn’t going to let that stop me. It was enough for me to gain a passion for something, and then with a little bit of hard work, hard work is always the answer if you want something.”
Baumgartner said his favorite part about Thanksgiving is spending it with family.
“Just being around the family. Just all the heckling and the talking and laughing and the food,” he said. “My family is very, very close and I am very thankful to have the family that I have.”
To learn more, watch the video above.