Lawrenceburg rallies behind native son Goepper
Lawrenceburg is a small city, but it's big on spirit for native son Olympian Nick Goepper.
Residents painted Olympic rings on a snowy hillside as a show of support for Goepper, who competed early Thursday morning in freestyle skiing slopestyle.
"It is great. It is great for a small town," said Lawrenceburg resident Eric Schwier.
You don't have to look far to see cities and towns all around Lawrenceburg united in support for Goepper. One man was even dressed as the Statue of Liberty to advertise Liberty Tax Service, which Goepper's mother owns.
"Everyone asks, 'How is Nick? What's the latest news on him?' So that's been really fun," said Liberty Tax General Manager Cynthia Stafford.
But to truly get to know him, just head to the Perfect North Slopes off of State Road 1.
"He got noticed at an early age. He was out here at 9, 10 and 11," said Chip Perfect of Perfect North.
The slopes were like a second home for Goepper, at least until the snow started falling.
"I think in the wintertime, it was more like his first home," Perfect laughed.
He weaved his way around the slopes, mastering them at a young age, making him a star early in life.
"When Nick was in the park, everyone would kind of stop what they were doing and take notice and watch," Perfect said.
Now, he's being watched on an international stage, in what could be the biggest competition of his life - and there is life-size support. The painted rings are on a hillside not far from his parents' home.
"That is definitely a powerful statement that is showing the world is here and that we are a piece of it," said resident Jodi Beeman.
As a community bursts with pride, it's not hard not to let emotions show.
"For me, it is a big challenge. I get choked up big time," Perfect said.
Several locations in Lawrenceburg are hosting viewing parties to watch Goepper's slopestyle performance. It will air on NBC's prime time Olympic coverage, starting at 8:00 p.m.