Almost a year after TARGET 13 exposed allegations of past child sex abuse against two Colorado Springs gymnastics coaches, some parents have banded together to start their own gym.
A group of elite gymnasts who used to train at ArtSports World now meet at a small building near Garden of the Gods Road and 30th Street.
"Several parents got together and we found a warehouse here, bought a lot of expensive equipment, and we've been going since then," said Keith Howard, one of the parents who helped start High Country Gymnastics.
Howard said the transition from ArtSports World was difficult, but necessary. Last fall, TARGET 13 found out a coach at ArtSports, Doug Boger, had been banned by USA Gymnastics for past allegations of child sex abuse. Boger's friend and the owner of the gym, Michael Zapp, was convicted of second-degree child sex abuse in the 1980s.
"Several parents felt like we wanted someplace that was more secure and a little bit safer for our kids," said Howard.
It was a big change for the gymnasts, some who'd trained at ArtSports most of their lives.
"It was was hard at first, leaving someplace you've known for so long," said gymnast Sam Chiacchia.
"Everything was in fast-forward, I didn't know what was happening," said gymnast Paige Howard. "I was just pretty confused."
Gymnasts have bounced back from the change. At a recent national championship, eight out of nine High Country gymnasts medaled. Chiacchia and Howard are both ranked among the top in the nation for trampoline events, and have ambitions to go on to the Olympics.
Their coach from ArtSports, Tex Womack, helped their parents start the gym, and serves as head coach. Womack was fired from ArtSports after the scandal broke, he says because he talked to the media.
"I'm here with my coach," said Chiacchia. "He's been my coach for seven years. I'm getting my work done and it's great."
ArtSports has changed its name to Trampoline World. Boger was fired after it was revealed he was on the banned coaches list, but Zapp remains the owner.