Brooke Goldberg, an energetic and ambitious 17-year-old from Arnold, Md., competed in Almere, The Netherlands in August at the World Baton Twirling Federation’s Seventh International Cup.
Aspiring athletes came from 15 countries to vie for top honors. Brooke finished 10th in the artistic A senior division and ninth in the solo A senior division.
Besides having the opportunity to compete, Brooke said that it was “an amazing experience.”
Her twirling career began when she was 41⁄2, and soon after, she dropped her other sports programs to master the baton. For the past 14 years her coach and trainer has been Colleen Rowe. She is assisted by her daughter, Breanne, who, Brooke says, is her hero. To augment her skills, she flew to Sacramento, Calif., a couple of times a month for a year-and-a-half to work with highly regarded trainer Sandi Rios and was part of Rios’ Syndication Baton Club team.
When her father, Roger Goldberg, died, Brooke used twirling as a way to deal with his death and heal.
“He is always in my heart when I am on the floor,” she said.
She comes from a very close-knit family. Her biggest cheerleaders are her twin brothers, Stuart and Ethan Goldberg, and Sam Boquist, in addition to her grandparents, Sandy and Marty Pollinger.
When she is not twirling, Brooke participates with Broadneck High School’s dance team, which performs at pep rallies, galleries and festivals throughout the country. She also performs during the halftime of sporting events with the United States Twirling Association trio team, where she showcases her baton talents, including fire twirling. As a way of passing the torch, she hopes to teach “little kids” as she grows older.
Brooke has high aspirations. She would welcome the chance to be a featured twirler with a college band to keep her passion alive. A junior, she hopes to become a nurse anesthetist or, perhaps, to work in pediatric oncology.
Brooke does not forego her Judaic heritage. She is involved in tzedakah projects and embraces the tenants of chesed (kindness), which she said her mother, Margie Goldberg, taught her.