Alaska’s first Professional Natural Bodybuilding show debuted October 6 in Anchorage as part of the 19th Annual Anchorage Bodybuilding, Figure and Fitness Championships. The Williamson Auditorium of University of Alaska, Anchorage was wall to wall with more than 1000 fans cheering on their favorite amateur and pro athletes.
The Opening Fitness Routine:
The show got off to an energized start as Guest Poser Dana Snelson lit up the auditorium with her fast paced and dynamic fitness routine. Dana is a fourth generation Alaskan and the winner of the 2007 Northern Classic Overall Fitness. Her routine featured aerial acrobatics and strength moves that elicited gasps of admiration and wonder from the crowd.
Women's Figure Divisions:
In Women’s Figure, short class, Pauline Mitchell surprised many with her narrow win over longtime competitor Debbie Fowler. This was Mitchell’s first figure competition and it will be exciting to see how her career continues. Fowler came in looking better than ever, with tight lines and near-perfect symmetry. Hopefully both these ladies will return to compete again.
Victoria Clark was the winning competitor in Women’s Figure, tall class. Clark normally competes in fitness, but was sidelined late last month with a knee injury. Clark’s physique has improved greatly over the last competition. She’s significantly improved her symmetry, coming in with a nice shape and increased muscle mass, while maintaining her long, lean lines.
Beth Davis was the lone Women’s Figure, master’s class, competitor. New to competing, Beth has excellent shape and conditioning. With a little fine tuning and some more stage experience, Davis should make her mark in Alaska figure. Mitchell won the overall.
Novice Bodybuilding Divsions:
Novice Men’s Bodybuilding was taken by Mark Baldwin, from Fort Richardson, Alaska. Baldwin has great conditioning and was fun to watch; he clearly enjoyed himself on stage. James Bradford and Steven Fidelin went head-to-head in the Junior Men’s Bodybuilding category, with Bradford walking away with the title.
Gene Lawrence from Anchorage and from Elmendorf Air Force Base battled it out for the Master’s Men’s Bodybuilding title, and Lawrence’s sleek lines beat out Brit.
Novice Women’s Bodybuilding was a highlight of the evening, as Jennifer Johnson took the stage. Johnson also competed in Mixed Pairs with her husband, John Wayne, and her love of the sport and complete enjoyment showed in her every movement. Laura Boisacq easily won the Light Weight Women’s Bodybuilding, taking home the Overall Title, Best Poser Award, and Most Muscular Award.
Laura has very successfully competed in National bodybuilding shows in the past, and is just making a comeback after having her fourth child. She is an inspiration to women everywhere. Laura came back onstage to compete in Mixed Pairs Bodybuilding with her husband, Shawn. Their routine was light-hearted and fun and the two worked the stage well together.
Their only competition was John Wayne Johnson and his wife, Jennifer. In the end, the Boisacq’s walked away with the Mixed Pairs Title.
Rodney Hawthorne from Vancouver, Washington, was the featured guest poser, and he delighted the crowd with his military themed and dramatic performance. Hawthorne has an impressive bodybuilding history, dating back to 1984. Some highlights from his career include the Oregon State Bodybuilding Championship, the Pro-Atlas Champion, 2003 and 2004 NGA Natural Universe champion, the 2004 INBA World Champion, and the 2004 INBA Natural Olympia Champion.
Currently, Hawthorne acts as President and Founder of Ironfish Athletic Ministries (I AM Fitness), which promotes Natural Bodybuilding Shows and sporting events to raise funds for non-profits. I AM Fitness provides free personal training and mentoring for overweight, fatherless, and at-risk kids.
The top 2 competitors in each class are now eligible to compete in his upcoming Golden Kingdom Pro-Am Bodybuilding, Fitness and Figure Championship in the professional class. It was truly an honor to have this man in attendance.
Men's Open Bodybuilding Divisions:
John Wayne Johnson, fresh off his performance in Mixed Pairs, won the Light Weight Men’s Bodybuilding award, taking the stage in a cowboy hat that made its way into the crowd during his bodybuilding routine.
Middle Weight Men’s Bodybuilding was the biggest class of the evening, and the competition was fierce. Chris Goepfert from Moses Lake, Washington, was the eventual winner, coming in with unbeatable conditioning and excellent symmetry. Scott Lyons was a close second, and Scott Griebel placed a solid third.
Jeremiah Mims and Josh Peters rounded out the top five. Both Mims and Peters are to be given credit for competing in the open category their first time on stage. These young men from Elmendorf Air Force Base will hopefully be back again.
Rob Crews from Anchorage beat Matthew Tompkins for the Light Heavy Weight Men’s title. Both are seasoned competitors who have continued to improve in each competition.
The Judges had a tough decision when the class winners took the stage to compete for the Overall Men’s Bodybuilding Title. After a rigorous and exhausting pose down, Chris Goepfert claimed the overall title, taking home a 3 foot tall trophy and the Overall Sword. John Wayne Johnson earned the Men’s Best Poser Award.
The Natural Pro Division:
The Natural Men’s Professional Bodybuilding division featured some of the best competitors to ever take the stage in Alaskan bodybuilding. There is a definite look to natural bodybuilding, and the crowd seemed to appreciate the hard work put into sculpting the physiques. Craig Toth from Boise, Idaho, won a unanimous judging decision for first place and a hefty check.
Toth is a staunch supporter of Natural Bodybuilding with an impressive resume of competitions dating back to 1994. He earned his pro status in 1999 and has had a steady succession of wins since. Robert Green from Wichita, Kansas, took second place, coming in with clean lines and excellent shape. Green is a two time NGA Mr. Universe and works as a personal trainer.
Anchorage’s own Shawn Boisacq (who earlier in the evening competed in and won the Mixed Pairs division) took third place. Shawn is a longtime competitor who brings drama and power in his every performance. Shawn got his start bodybuilding in high school, where he twice earned the Mr. West High School Title. He earned his pro card in Rocky Mountain in 2004.
Geoff Bonin from Soldotna took fourth, and Al Wilson came in fifth. Bonin competed in the same show last year as an amateur and definitely held his own in the pro ranks. Wilson took the stage after an 18 year hiatus, and was a crowd favorite. In all, over $2,000 in prize money was handed out! All the professional bodybuilders were drug tested by the ABFF’s Dr. Andy Evanger from Fairbanks, Alaska.
The 2007 Anchorage PRO-AM Bodybuilding, Fitness and Figure Championships were captured in video by Roman Moreno, of Fox Sports NW Portland. Official photographs of the competitors, both onstage and backstage, were taken by Javier Robinson and Janna Maile. As always, Powerhouse Gym and Fitness Center generously sponsored the show and the athletes.
Other sponsors include GNC of Huffman Carrs and the Sears Mall, Kre-Alkalyn, Inlet Tower Hotel and Suites, Muscle Milk, Bodybuilding.com, and Musclemag International, who generously gave of their time, products, and sponsorship. Last but not least, Derek Snelson of Performance Productions promoted the show and worked to make it one of the best in Alaskan history.
The ABFF is an organization committed to furthering natural bodybuilding, fitness and figure. The founders, Tony Weaver and Derek Snelson, have provided a competitive and performance outlet to all the hard working, dedicated, and natural physique athletes in Alaska.
The next ABFF show will be in March 2008, the 25th Annual Alaska State Bodybuilding, Fitness, and Figure Championships held at the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts. For further information, please visit