Utahns aren't the only ones who have taken Denise Parker's Olympic quests to heart: She's caught the attention of the Japanese, too.
A film crew from a popular Japanese television show has been making visits to Salt Lake City to find out more about the youngest member of the U.S. Olympic team and the state she comes from."We expect something good, or some medals, from Denise," said Yasuhiro Asai of NTVIC, a Japanese TV network. Asai and a TV crew first came to Salt Lake Sept. 2 and followed the young archer as she practiced and made preparations for her Olympic trip to Seoul, Korea.
This week, the crew went to Denise's school in South Jordan and asked her classmates what they thought of the 14-year-old Olympian, and also interviewed Deseret News promotions director Keith West about the paper's drive that raised funds to help pay for training and travel expenses.
Parker was eliminated from individual competition Thursday but still has a shot at a medal in the team competition that will take place Saturday.
Asai said the 30-minute program has two hosts - a Japanese person and a former Utahn, Kent Derricott, who he said is "very, very famous right now" in Japan. He said the program makes comparisons with different aspects of the Japanese and the American cultures, and this particular program will focus on the Salt Lake City community, as well as Parker. Asai interviewed Salt Lake Mayor Palmer DePaulis Thursday.
Although Asai said Salt Lake is very different from Tokyo, he said he thinks the city is beautiful. "The local community has very polite people and very kind people," he said, adding that it is different from New York, where he is currently stationed.
Asai said the program will air in Japan sometime in mid-October.