In the upcoming week, people around the world will be closely following the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
One young Apex resident will be following the action much closer than most others.
Sydney McCoy, 11, is currently attending the Olympics festivities after she was chosen a finalist in the McDonald’s Happy Meals Chef contest. She and her father, David, entered the contest by answering a questionnaire and submitting a short video online that showcased their family mealtime.
More than 50 friends and family members gathered last week to give Sydney a sendoff party at the McDonald’s inside the Apex Walmart.
“This is the restaurant where she entered the contest so we wanted to do something special,” said McDonald’s owner Tommy Haynie. “We thought we’d give her a nice sendoff and invite her family and friends.”
Sydney said the past few weeks have been hectic as she prepared for the week-long trip.
“It’s been crazy, a real whirlwind,” said Sydney. “Everything has been going full force. It’s very exciting.”
“We’ve never been to the Olympics before so we are just looking forward to the whole experience,” said David.
Sydney, who will be joined by both her father and her mother, Hazel, left for London on Tuesday. While attending the Games she will receive tickets to both the swimming and volleyball events and receive archery lessons from the U.S. team.
She also will get the opportunity to cook a meal in the largest McDonald’s in the world that was built specifically for the Olympics.
While Sydney is excited to see all the sights in London, the most special aspect of the trip might be watching the joy felt by her mother who was once an elite swimmer in South Africa. Hazel moved to the United States to train and was even mentored by Olympic legend Mark Spitz before knee injuries dashed her dream of competing on the world stage.
“My mom was supposed to be in the Olympics but had knee surgery and couldn’t go,” said Sydney. “So, this is really special for her, to go to the Olympics with her family.”
“It’s amazing,” said Hazel. “It’s also so weird that she is going to attend the swimming (competition).”
To follow Sydney in London visit www.sydneymccoy.com.