Olympic medalist Aly Raisman will be welcomed home Saturday morning at a rally in Needham that will feature an interview with a sports reporter about her career.
While in Rio, Raisman won silver medals in the women’s floor exercise and women’s individual all-around. She also received a gold medal as part of her winning team. In London in 2012, Raisman was awarded gold medals for her team and her floor exercise. She also received a bronze medal in balance beam.
Raisman will be greeted at 11 a.m. Saturday in the Town Common by Needham residents, according to Sandy Cincotta, the support services manager for the board of selectmen.
Then she will sit down for a Q and A session. “We’re looking for a more intimate discussion,” Cincotta said. “We want to talk with her about her experiences in the last two Olympics and anything else she wants to talk about.”
Cincotta said that while officials have yet to determine the questions they will be asking Raisman, they have chosen an interviewer. Mike Riley, a WBZ-AM sports anchor who is also originally from Needham, will interview Raisman on the steps of the Town Hall.
Cincotta said they’re hoping people from the crowd will be able to ask Raisman a few questions themselves.
“We’re all still riding on the high from 2012,” Cincotta said. “Everyone is just so happy, and Needham gets really excited about our hometown heroes.”
Cincotta said the town hosted a parade and large rally back in 2012, when Raisman returned from her Olympic debut. This year, the town is eliminating the parade and hoping to focus more on the conversation with Raisman.
“It was a big fanfare,” Cincotta said. “We had a big parade and a huge rally, and there was overwhelming support and so many people. It was a wonderful event, but this time we want to do something a little different.”
Cincotta said the whole town is looking forward to celebrating Raisman’s accomplishments.
“We’ve been watching her all through the Olympics and paid attention to what she was doing between the two Olympics,” Cincotta said. “We’re very excited for her and we’re just happy to give her her accolades once again.”Olivia Quintana can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @oliviasquintana.